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The Cloverfield Paradox

MV5BMTAwOTIxMDA0MjZeQTJeQWpwZ15BbWU4MDg1MjgzNzQz. V1 SY1000 CR006741000 AL  The Cloverfield Paradox

Orbiting a planet on the brink of war, scientists test a device to solve an energy crisis, and end up face-to-face with a dark alternate reality.

This is an unfortunate misstep by JJ Abrams, who I already have a low opinion of as a story teller, his movies will typically throw established cannon out the window and do whatever fits his fancy at the time of filming with no care for what he’s trampled on. Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Trek 2009 and Star Trek Into Darkness for prime examples of this. It should have been no surprise to me that he would continue down this path, after all it’s made him plenty of money and acclaim, but this time he’s doing it to his own properties with is both fitting and infuriating.

No more is the Cloverfield story about an alien monster that awoke from the depths of the ocean, this is now an Event Horizon story, just near Earth. They’re doing science and monsters come through from the other side and nothing in our reality can be trusted! The ultimate JJ Abrams story, in which he doesn’t even have to pay attention to what he’s established as normal in his own movie universe! I caught myself yelling at the screen several times in frustration: there are many times we’re shown a window out to space, which is rotating to give the space station gravity. It’s a cool concept and that’s how gravity and centripetal force work. You put a giant hollow wheel in zero G, spin it fast enough and boom, you have artificial gravity where you can walk around the inside walls. Unless I’m misunderstanding how everything is shown in TCP, the way they show the stars moving and the position of the window as seen from inside the station doesn’t work with how I understand gravity and centripetal forces work when shown from the outside of the stations.

Additionally, there’s a 3d printed gun. I can get past the idea that in the future they’ll have polymers that can withstand the pressures that firing a bullet cause, but why in the world would their 3d printer have gun powder in it?

I also have complaints about the final scene, but that skips a little too closely into spoiler territory, but suffice to say, I feel like they blew their cgi budget earlier in the film and didn’t have enough for the final 30 seconds of the film.

Like nearly every other JJ film, this is a visually gorgeous film with a story that just barely entertains. Skippable unless you’re a Clovy fan, but even then this isn’t going to impress very much.

Want to know why I think it was first announced during the Super Bowl, then was immediately available to watch on Netflix?  That’s the only way this one would have made any money, because word of mouth for this as a theatrical release would have put it in an early grave. The turn around from first trailer to launch date (hours?) means no one was able to comment on it before interested parties watched it and being on Netflix means never having to say you’re sorry.

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