Before the screening for this film started, a presenter came up on stage, like always, and introduced the movie. This time, however, they made sure we knew not to spoil a thing, and really accentuated how secretive this project was. We weren't permitted to spoil a thing, and while the film has now been released publicly, I am still going to follow through with this promise. But essentially, the film follows the story of Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), who's in a car accident and taken into an underground shelter by a mysterious man named Howard (John Goodman) and Emmet (John Gallagher Jr.). The two insist that the outside world has fallen into chaos, the air completely unbreathable, but as the poster states, monsters come in many forms.
Since it's really just about these three characters, the film relies on their performances, especially since the screenplay by Damien Chazelle, Matthew Stuecken and Josh Campbell is already utterly brilliant. Do we get good performances though? Oh, we get good performances alright. Mary Elizabeth Winstead is sensational, but it's really John Goodman who kills it in this movie, giving what I would easily consider one of his best performances to date. His character is dark and unknown, but layered with a twisted sense of humour, and Goodman brings out the best of both worlds, giving a performance that's both chilling and sympathetic.
As for first time director Dan Trachtenberg, he's making it seem that 2016 is really the year for first time directors. First, we had Deadpool, which is currently my favourite film of the year, and now we have 10 Cloverfield Lane, an exceptionally well made thriller that Trachtenberg nails. His directing in this movie is seriously on point, the camera work utterly brilliant and the score more effective than I expected it to be. He understands what this film is and how to get it to work, and he does so. If we see more of him in the near future, I certainly won't be complaining.
To sum up, 10 Cloverfield Lane is four fifths of a great movie, full of suspense, sophisticated characters, solid direction and great performances, including an absolutely chilling one from John Goodman. Then the rest of the film happens, and I can't even explain how bad it is without spoilers. It's just.... no, no.