Cloverfield (2008) – 15th Anniversary 4K

I remember seeing Cloverfield opening weekend in the theatre. I was very excited to dig into a monster movie that saw a kaiju trampling New York City, and I loved that it was being told from the viewpoints of a group of survivors who recorded everything with their videocamera.

Unfortunately, I forgot my previous experience with found footage films on the big screen and was decidedly queasy throughout the screening because of the shakey cam that is part and parcel of the subgenre. What I did see of it, when my tummy cooled off enough, and my vertigo was washed away, was very enjoyable, and I was eager to add it to my home collection where I would be able to enjoy it on a smaller, home theatre sized-screen.

I dug this film, I loved the mythos that was built up around it with things like Slusho! The idea that something could just climb out of the ocean and wreak havoc and chaos, there’s something really engaging about that from a storytelling point of view. It puts into mind our position in the grand scheme of things.

I love that idea. And no matter what theory one subscribes to about where the monster comes from, the thought that there is something out there bigger, scarier, and maybe smarter than we are, that definitely gives one pause.

It had been a while since I last watched it, so I was very keen to take a look at Paramount Picture’s 4K update of Matt Reeves’ monster movie. Watching it now, I was struck by a couple of things, especially his use of colour and darkness – this is definitely the same director who would go on to make The Batman.

While they are different films, their colour schemes, and the way Reeves shoots, there are undeniable similarities that can be discovered as the narrative follows a group of twenty-somethings as they cross New York, led by Rob (Michael Stahl-David), who is determined to reach, and save his friend, and probably the love of his life, Beth (Odette Annable) while the entire city is tormented by a giant creature that has woken, and pulled itself out of the ocean.

Tense, scary, and fast-moving, the film continues to engage and entertain, and the 4K picture practically pops off the screen. It’s a helluva ride!

Available in a limited edition steelbook, the new 4K edition (can you believe this one came out 15 years ago?) also includes a Blu-ray version of the film, with all the previously released extras; a commentary by Matt Reeves, a making-of doc, a look at the creature designs, the visual effects, deleted scenes, additional endings, and cool little Easter eggs.

Cloverfield remains a great monster mash, who doesn’t like watching kaijus wreak destruction wherever they go?

Paramount Canada makes Cloverfield the 15th Anniversary Edition available on Blu-ray and 4K today!

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