10 Cloverfield Lane DVD Review

DVD Review by Mikey Lance

The Premise
A young woman wakes up after a terrible accident to find that she's locked in a cellar with a doomsday prepper, who insists that he saved her life and that the world outside is uninhabitable following an apocalyptic catastrophe. Uncertain what to believe, the woman soon determines that she must escape at any cost.

The Review
Appearances are not what they seem in the fantastic film from first time director Dan Trachtenberg. It can be confusing, however, deciding how to approach this film. It had almost no publicity - perhaps because of Executive Producer J. J. Abrams' association with Star Wars: The Force Awakens that was in the heart of the marketing machine only month prior. But that's fine, we don't always need marketing, and now there's another movie that's popped up on the 'Now Showing' list at the theater. So then you see the title, '10 Cloverfield Lane' and think, "Right, a sequel to that 2008 found footage movie"... but then you see the trailer and there's no found footage in sight. So what is this? A sequel, but different? Same universe, maybe? Tough to say, you have to just watch it! And in a very early M. Night Shayamalan kind of way, it probably won't be what you think.

Something that struck me straight away was casting. If your reference point for John Goodman is rested firmly in the '90s - maybe it's the TV show Roseanne, or even 94's 'The Flintstones' movie, then there's a bit a surprise in store for you. Without spoiling it, Goodman delivers a stellar performance that's made me wonder why he's never been cast in similar roles. Just a brilliantly executed performance that re-contextualizes Goodman in my mind forever. And the acting praise doesn't end with Goodman. Both lead actress Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Scott Pilgrim vs The World) and John Gallagher Jr. (Short Term 12) did great jobs playing their part in this odd little 'family', that's been thrown together because of some unspecified apocalyptic event.

The Verdict
Watch with expectations or without, but chances are you probably will be caught off your guard a few times. Have a watch!

The Trailer

The Info
DVD Releases: 6th July 2016
Rating: M – Contains Violence & content that may disturb
Duration: 103 minutes 
Genre:  Sci-Fi/Thriller
Starring: John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Gallagher Jr. Douglas M. Griffin, Suzanne Cryer, Bradley Cooper, Sumalee Montano and Frank Mottek
Director: Dan Trachtenberg (Films)

The Extras
Mary Elizabeth Winstead was the first and only choice for the lead role of Michelle.

The cast members weren't told the title of the movie during production (preserving the secret as long as possible).

The film's life began as a script called "The Cellar" (which had nothing to do with the Cloverfield universe, and was at one time also known as "Valencia"). The script was acquired by J.J. Abrams' production company Bad Robot and adapted to become "10 Cloverfield Lane".

The name of the gas station Michelle stops at to refuel is named "Kelvin". This is an Easter Egg J.J. Abrams slips into all his projects, a tribute to his maternal grandfather Henry Kelvin who owned an electronics company and influenced Abrams as a boy.

The slushie brand "Slusho" from the original Cloverfield (2008) also appears in the window of a convenience store in this film.

Dan Trachtenberg's feature directorial debut.

According to producer J.J. Abrams, this is considered a "blood-relative" to the original Cloverfield (2008).