Saturday, July 02, 2016
10 Cloverfield Lane
The Gist: A woman wakes up in a strange place that is revealed to be a bunker. The man who owns it tells her she cannot leave because some kind of explosion made the outside air unsafe and that everyone out there is likely dead or dying. She's skeptical, but another man in the bunker tells her he actually witnessed the attack.
Back in 2008, J.J. Abrams came up with Cloverfield. It was very cleverly marketed, teasing the audience without revealing much at all. The tactic worked and the movie was fairly successful financially, but it hardly lived up to expectations.
10 Cloverfield Lane, produced once again by the famously secretive Abrams, was concealed so effectively, no one had any idea he was even producing a sequel at all! Its release was a complete surprise given the full absence of marketing.
Fortunately, the follow up is a decisive improvement. The script is streamlined and clever and the action is well balanced with periods of inaction that build on the plot's basic idea of the unknown and the insecurities it engenders.
John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and John Gallagher Jr. all do an excellent job.
The Bottom Line: Whether you liked the original or not, rest assured that you will enjoy the sequel. I am actually hoping more chapters are in the pipeline.