Saturday 7 July 2018

10 Cloverfield Lane

This is a fairly well paced low-budget thriller which keeps the audience guessing until the end, creating a suspenseful journey. The basic plot is that a girl is in a car crash, passes out and when she wakes, is in a Nuclear Bomb Shelter under a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere with the owner of the facility and another bloke, who says that he helped the owner to build it.

The owner claims that there has been "an invasion" and that he had happened upon the girl’s accident, scooped her up (for reasons that become clear later) and given her the gift of safety when everyone outside is dead or dying. He goes on to demonstrate that he's clearly in control and in command of the other two, having prepared for this for a long time, and that their survival depends on them doing just as he tells them.

John Goodman (best known to me for Roseanne, The Big Lebowski, Argo) plays the lead in such a way that you really can’t tell if he’s got a screw loose, whether he’s a murderer, if he’s telling a pack of lies or has become the saviour of the pair of them and is doing the decent thing. He does it very well and you’re not sure what’s really going on until the end, like any good suspense film. The other two, Mary Elizabeth Winstead (A Good Day to Die Hard, Death Proof, The Returned) and John Gallagher Jr. (Whatever Works, Hush, Short Term 12) also play their roles well, depicting the plight of the unknowing, unwilling, unbelieving and untrusting.

Claustrophobic and taut, 95% of the film is set in the bunker which gives the audience some understanding and sympathy for the situation. It’s a good yarn and worth a viewing. Currently available via a subscription to NowTV in the UK.

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