Flat out, it was super obvious that this was another movie that was just reworked in a few ways to make it fit the Cloverfield universe (or should we call it multiverse now?)… which we all know was no secret, just as it wasn’t a secret with 10 Cloverfield Lane.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing for most people, cause most people actually don’t know that fact going into it, but for those of us that have been following this stuff for a while, it’s pretty obvious.
However, that aside, let’s talk about the movie itself.
That’s the best word I can use to describe it.
It wasn’t a great movie, it had it’s moments, but it wasn’t a great movie. I’d say it’s definitely the worst of the three Cloverfield movies so far, overall, but they are all still decent flicks (although I still regard the first one as being a pretty solid movie).
The movie itself focuses around a group of scientists and engineers on a space station, “Cloverfield Station”, that is orbiting above the Earth. Their job is to bring a particle accelerator called “Shepard” online as a way to solve the energy crisis happening on Earth.
Shepard is supposed to be a way to provide unlimited power to the entire world without the need for oil, which the countries on Earth are currently getting ready to go to war for.
It takes the crew over 2-years to finally bring Shephard online to the point where it appears to be stabilized, until something goes wrong.
In an instant, Shepard shuts down and the crew finds themselves with a lot of questions… a lot of questions.
I don’t want to spoil the movie for anyone who hasn’t seen it yet, so I’m going to leave the synopsis there and let you figure it out for yourself. I’ll warn you ahead when there are spoilers, because there will be spoilers.
I thought the the movie was a decent science fiction flick with the added plus of being part of the Cloverfield franchise. However, I can definitely see why the head of Paramount watched it and decided to give up the rights to Netflix for this one, I don’t feel like it would have held its own with a theatrical release, especially with it’s budget of $45 million… It probably would have made it’s money back, but it would not have been as successful as the previous two movies considering the budgets for the previous two combined was less than this one alone.
There are definitely some cool things happening in the movie, but there are also some kind of questionable things going on that were a bit like they just threw out a million ideas and grabbed a few they thought would work.
There are going to be spoilers about the plot moving forward, so if you don’t want to read them, don’t continue on with this review until you’ve seen the movie.
Ok, so I get the idea that when they fired up Shepard, it transported Cloverfield Station into another dimension, which is what our old friend Mark Stambler was warning them about, but some of the things they tried to do, while using the alternate dimension as the explanation, was a little out there.
Finding Jensen in the wall was an interesting twist, which I didn’t see coming, so that was pretty cool, but the bit with Mundy’s arm was a bit strange for me, especially since Shephard wasn’t online, and hadn’t been online for a while, when his arm was pulled into the wall.
Jensen appearing in the wall as soon as they crossed kind of makes sense, since the Cloverfield Station we’re following would have jumped to Jensen’s dimension, presumably occupying the same space as her Cloverfield Station, so it’s plausible, that she would have appeared somewhere on the ship as she did.
At first I did question how she could appear on the ship if it our Cloverfield Station now appears on the other side of the sun from Earth in this new dimension, when in the original dimension, the station was right near Earth. If that was the case, the two stations would not have been in the same place at the same time, so there wouldn’t have been a reason that our station would have taken the exact space of the Earth 2 station… but they are different dimensions, so again, that could be used to explain the problem. The planets and sun and everything maybe in different places in the different dimensions, which could allow the stations to have been in the same place, but in different places… if that makes sense.
In addition to that nothing weird should have been happening after the station made the jump to a new dimension since Shepard wasn’t operational at that point, yet Volkov starts going crazy, creates a gun (for reasons we don’t know), and then dies before he can do anything with it… yet it was a reason for a gun to be created for later on.
And it doesn’t make sense that Mundy’s arm would have been pulled into the wall way after the event with Shepard took place… it just doesn’t really make a lot of sense.
The only way you can explain it away is if you just think that Shepard firing up tore some sort of rift in the space/time balance or something, and that was the reason. But I feel if that was the case, there would have been a lot more weird things happening on the ship, and on Earth 2 when they finally reconnect with them… but it sounds like Earth 2 is just happy that there’s still another Shepard in the sky after theirs was destroyed.
Oh, and the hand telling them to cut open Volkov to find the gyroscope which allows them to regain communications was a little off as well. The gyroscope would have had to have been inside Volkov as soon as the station jumped to the new dimension, just like how Jensen was immediately in the walls. So something that large being inside a human would have just murdered him instantly, or at the very least made him super uncomfortable… but instead it just made him hear voices, 3D print a gun, and then burst open with worms…
So there were definitely aspects of the dimensional jump that didn’t make sense…
Speaking of which, now let’s talk about the Cloverfield connection with regards to our favorite monster Clover.
Cloverfield Monster Connection
At the beginning of the movie we’re introduced to Ava and her husband on Earth. We see them sitting in a long line of cars at a gas station trying to get gas when the power goes out. This is our first insight into the power crisis and these two main characters.
We soon learn that Ava is supposed to be going up to work on the Shepard Particle Accelerator, but is having second thoughts because she doesn’t want to leave her husband. He ends up convincing her it’s the right thing to do and that’s how she ends up on the space station, but more importantly, it gives us a reason to jump back and forth between Earth to see what’s happening there while the crew is trying to solve the energy crisis in space.
Ava’s husband is our eyes and ears on the ground, and while the glimpses we get a few and far between, once the Shepard fires and ground control loses contact with Cloverfield Station, things start to get crazy on Earth.
Mark Stambler warned the public that if the particle accelerator were to fire successfully, it could have catastrophic consequences on their world… including demons or creatures appearing… see where this is going.
Again, this is a bit of a stretch in working the movie into the Cloverfield franchise, but multi dimensional travel is basically a way to explain anything.
So while Ava and her crew disappear from the sky above Earth, we see her husband rescue a little girl as he races around the city dodging random explosions and an obvious Clover monster in the smoke and shadows.
At the end of the movie, after Ava and Schmidt successfully fight off Jensen and fire up Shepard again, to bring them back to their dimension, they implement a fix that Tam discovered before being flash frozen to death, fire up Shepard once again, only this time in a stabilized manner, and jump in an escape pod towards Earth.
It’s at this point that Ava’s husband is on the phone with ground control who tells him that the station is back and they are on their way home, much to his dismay as he yells about telling them not to come back to Earth as it is overrun by these creatures.
Cut to the escape pod entering Earth’s atmosphere and Clover appearing above a cloud of smoke that hovers over the Earth.
So Earth as Ava knew it is now overrun by Clover monsters that were transported there from another dimension when Shepard as fired…
but, this Earth that we are seeing can’t be the Earth from the original Cloverfield movie… can it?
Connection to Original Cloverfield Movie
So I’ve been thinking about this problem a lot this morning. Do we think that either Earth that we see in The Cloverfield Paradox could be the same Earth from the original Cloverfield movie, or is the Cloverfield Earth another 3rd dimension?
We know there are more than 2 dimensions, because the Clover monsters were transported from another dimension to Earth (right?), so I keep going back and forth on whether or not either of these Earth’s are the Earth we see in Cloverfield.
One thing we know for sure is that it’s not the same ‘time’ as the original Cloverfield movie. So it could technically be one of these Earth’s, just in a different point in time, which Mark Stambler did touch upon in his rant about demons and creatures, and the effects on time…
My theory is that Earth 2 (Jensen’s Earth) is the Earth from the original Cloverfield, however Cloverfield takes place in 2008, while The Cloverfield Paradox takes place in 2028. This would mean that when the particle accelerator was fired up in 2028, it caused a ripple in space and time, as we know, and sent pieces of the destroyed Cloverfield Station back in time (which is what we see crash down into the water in the first movie), as well as sending (at least one) Clover monster to their dimension back in 2008.
Using the theory proposed by Mark Stambler there’s really nothing that can’t be explained by just chalking it up to Shepard being fired up in the future.
The only thing that is a little hard to grasp though, is if in 2028 Shepard sent a Clover Monster to Earth in 2008, wouldn’t that have changed the trajectory of the whole world in that dimension from 2008 on? I don’t know… again, things can just be weird because of the particle accelerator…
It’s definitely an interesting concept and idea to think about, so I hope we can get a discussion going, but I think I’m happy with my theory for now unless someone can sway me otherwise.
So what did everyone else think of the movie? What are your theories?