The Cloverfield Paradox

  • 10 Mar - 16 Mar, 2018
  • Farheen Jawaid
  • Reviews

A Netflix release that came as a surprise to the whole world when it trailer was unveiled at the super bowl, tells us how the event in Cloverfield happened right after the super bowl match that very day. With no marketing until that trailer launch a few months back, The Cloverfield Paradox shows the studio’s and producer’s lack of understanding to market and repackage a movie to appeal to their logic.

The history of the Cloverfield franchise started with Cloverfield (2008), an enjoyable found footage monster invasion story that did well for itself making 170 million with a budget of 25 million. In 2016, came 10 Cloverfield Lane, which started as an original spec script, but then re-worked to add the Cloverfield event in its backdrop. It was a fantastic movie which does not suffer from being tied in to the franchise.

The Cloverfield Paradox isn’t that lucky. Starting out as an original sci-fi horror actioner the movie was already partially shot when it is forced into the Cloverfield event. The mash-up of an edit pulls down the movie.

The plot has husband and wife Ava (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) and Michael (Roger Davies), deciding if she should go to space for scientific research, The Shepard particle accelerator, an experiment that will bring clean energy to the world. Without their help, the world will die in five years.

In a montage opening sequence, we are shown that two years have gone by. Ava and a group of international scientists are close to finding the answer in space, but they have only a few more attempts to make things work till the space station runs out of power to make the experiment work.

Back on earth, the nations are at each other’s neck. The resources are dwindling, and a conspiracy author speaks of a theory that the particle accelerator might do more harm than good. He thinks that the experiment may open a gateway between other dimensions that might... and it might even be filled with monsters. Taking cue, something weird does happen from the experiment and the earth disappears from the front of the space station. Things go downhill from then, but you would have already guessed that.

The Cloverfield Paradox works well as with sci-fi premise, but whenever the story tries to forcibly mix elements from the Cloverfield, the movie feels like it’s trying to dance with two left feet – it is both odd and graceless.