You've been warned.
Now before anyone starts busting my balls, I begrudgingly give this movie credit for it's "realism," meaning the shaky camera POV throughout the whole movie (because obviously they wouldn't be traveling with a full-body camera stabilizer), the lack of information known by the military (too much knowledge during those scenes would denote that they knew it was coming and did nothing. OMG Terrorist Monsters!), the confused masses fleeing Manhattan like cattle, and all the time the main characters spend sitting around staring blankly or making bad jokes. Those are all things that would probably happen if this were real, but just because those touches are there doesn't mean it makes the movie GOOD.
What really blows is that you have a legitimate monster movie, but you BARELY SEE THE MONSTER. Instead what you get is Hero Boy, his frat buddy, and two other tag-alongs plodding through Manhattan with the notion that they must "save the damsel in distress," aka the girl with whom Hero Boy recently became "more than just friends." To the writer and director, you guys have months of hype and a real element of surprise and that's the plot line you go after? Weak, man, weak. Let me tell you something: if realism is what you were going for, then you should know that boy heroes do not exist. Boys nowadays...they're not going to rescue some one-night stand who's already hooked up with another guy. No fucking way. And especially not if there's some giant outer space praying mantis-looking thing out tearing up the city. Real boys would be tuck-tailing and saving their own skinny asses, and I wouldn't blame them one bit. Shit, I'd probably knock them down trying to get out myself. My friends should know that, while I love them dearly, if a enormous mutant whale-o-pus should venture from the briny deep with a raging case of PMS and begins wreaking havoc in the city we're residing in, then all bets are off, and you're on your own. No hard feelings, guys. I'd expect you to do the same. I can hear some of you saying, "But Iris, he loved her! They said so to each other at the end of the film!" Yeah, yeah, yeah...well I'd be saying some crazy shit too if I were being bombed and death were knocking at the bridge. I mean, no one wants to die single. Am I right?
And while we're on the topic, what about that shitty ending? Just "Hi, I'm so-n-so," bombs drop, and *poof* they're dead, so let's roll the credits? Come on! Obviously the government is still intact enough to send a recovery team/cleanup crew, who found the tape. The opening credits with all the DoD warnings tell us that much, so why not let us in on a little more like where the hell did it come from, what the hell did they do about it, or what the hell was it? Or are the producers trying to set the stage for a sequel with a static-y radio broadcast clue that when played backwards whispers, "it's still alive". Nuccas, please! There isn't enough Dramamine in the world to get me to go to another installment of Gyrating Camera Theater.
And for those that are saying "Jesus, Iris, where's your suspension of disbelief? Can't you just give in a little for the sake of entertainment?" Well, folks, it was all consumed with believing that cell phone batteries come fully charged direct from the package at the local Radio Shack, that the characters are in possession of a SUPER CAMERA that comes with standard lighting, night vision mode, unending amounts of battery power, limitless amounts of video tape, and is also apparently made from that indestructible black box material they use on aircrafts, and that the cameraman's name just happened to be "Hud" (Head-Up Display anyone?). Oh, and the fact Hud films the entire time even while being attacked by the monsters. Not just attacked once--but twice! Okay, so maybe Hud took the "How to Film Bjork in Airports" class and really is that tough. But still...do I have "sucker" written on my forehead?
A big thumbs down for Cloverfield for me. By hey no surprise here...the Big Giant Head liked it. I'd just be careful of his judgment. The Christ Clone Trilogies and Rob Sheridan. 'Nuff said.