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Forums - Movies Discussion - Vek & Volt Review Hub | Current Review: Black Panther | Coming Soon: Annihilation

 

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Greetings all!

Welcome to Vek & Volt, a not-so-subtle riff on Siskel & Ebert  

Since Volterra and I share a deep love for cinema, we decided to create a home for our thoughts on movies, past, present, and future. We will be posting mini-reviews for current movies and also some older flicks. If we catch enough 2018 movies in theaters maybe we can make a top 10 list at the end of the year. We may also write essays or op-eds.

So, please join us on our quest to consume as much cinema as possible, and share your thoughts on the films we cover!

Last edited by Veknoid_Outcast - on 23 February 2018

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Movie Reviews 

(Scored from 0-10, with half point intervals)

Movie Director, Year Vek's Score Volt's score
The Cloverfield Paradox Julius Onah, 2018 3/10 2.5/10
Black Panther Ryan Coogler, 2018    
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
Last edited by Veknoid_Outcast - on 23 February 2018

Other Lists & Essays

TBD



After a year (!) in the making, this thread is ready to rock!

Stay tuned for our reviews of The Cloverfield Paradox.



The Cloverfield Paradox

J.J. Abrams needs to stop slapping "Cloverfield" on unrelated properties so indiscriminately. He got away with it with 10 Cloverfield Lane, because that movie was a taut, claustrophobic thriller that worked on its own. With The Cloverfield Paradox, however, Abrams and co. aren't so lucky. The movie, born as God Particle, was irredeemable already. Its manufactured association with Cloverfield -- now revealed more as a cynical advertising stunt than an anthology series -- makes the movie worse and the name Cloverfield toxic.

The Cloverfield Paradox follows an international crew of scientists and engineers in orbit around Earth, attempting to find a new source of energy that will alleviate the energy crisis on the planet below. The movie starts off well enough, with a quiet scene showing how gasoline shortages and power-outs have become part of the daily routine. Sadly, the script abandons Earth quickly to retreat to a space station, where things go wrong in all the predictable, well trodden ways. Then, instead of original ideas, the audience is treated to a hodgepodge of sci-fi horror scenes ripped directly from Event Horizon, Prometheus, and most of all Alien. Yet where Alien worked so effectively because we knew the crew and their personalities and dynamics, Cloverfield Paradox uses a quick-moving montage to summarize two years of seclusion and failure on the Cloverfield space station. We don't see enough of the crew living, laughing, and struggling, so of course we don't care when they're killed off one by one.

I will say the international cast here is pretty great, and they do the best with the shoddy material and inexperienced direction foisted upon them. Gugu Mbatha-Raw is the standout, although even her character — by far the most developed — isn't particularly nuanced. She has a tragic backstory, sure, but a tragedy is not a character trait. Elizabeth Debicki, who shined (literally) in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is also good.

Some of the scares and shocks are also acceptable (even if derivative) in a Cronenberg body-horror type way. Hey, I'm trying to find the positive things!

Let's return to the 800-ton monster in the room. Watching Cloverfield Paradox, it's pretty clear that the original script was unrelated to Cloverfield, and that scenes that reference the name were clumsily added after Abrams' production company Bad Robot got involved. This is especially true of the film's final shot, which is so jarringly, incomprehensibly bad that it ends up being the (unintentionally) funniest part of the whole movie.

3/10



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“The Cloverfield Paradox” is the third installement in the Cloverfield anthology film series. It’s also the weakest one by miles. While “Cloverfield” was a really tense, nerve-wracking found footage horror film, and “Cloverfield 10 Lane” was a suspenseful, creepy thriller; “The Cloverfield Paradox” feels just like a pastiche of sci-fi tropes. And because of that, it totally lacks identity.

The movie starts portraying an energy crisis on Earth. To solve that, the most powerful countries in the world start an experiment. It consists on a huge hadron collider built on the space to discover the God Particle (Higgs Boson) and create sustainable and unlimited energy.

The first half hour of the movie is a really good introduction. The stakes are high, and the concept of an experiment to create unlimited energy in space has potential. Also, the cast is pretty talented and they carry the weight of the film well.

But, then, the experiment finishes and everything that was build on the first half hour collapses. The experiment was basically a mere excuse to throw into the movie tons of nonsensical, unconnected sci-fi tropes. Which was this movie’s definition of a Deus Ex Machina. Alien? Checked. Interstellar? Checked. There’s even a bit which I couldn’t help but laugh that felt like The Addams Family in space.

The movie goes then for about an hour more throwing random scenes in your face at an incredibly odd pace and you only wish it stops for good.

And, because this is a Cloverfield movie, there’s obviously some references to the Cloverfield universe. There’s a subplot on Earth which doesn’t go anywhere and it just serves to make a pretty obvious reference to the first movie. And the ending, which I feel it was supposed to feel climatic but it was totally laughable and ridiculous, in one of the worst ending I’ve seen to any movie in years.

I really can’t recommend this movie to anyone. I haven’t lost faith on the franchise because of one misstep, so I can only recommend this movie to anyone who’s interested in the Cloverfield franchise. But you can read the plot online and save yourselves two precious hours of your time. Believe me, you can thank me later.

 

2.5/10