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Sunday Discussion: Will Cloverfield Live Up to the Hype?

by
January 13, 2008

Cloverfield

In only five more days a giant monster from the mind of J.J. Abrams and Matt Reeves will attack New York City and tear it to pieces. But alas, I remember back in August of 2006 saying that same sort of thing, but with a plane full of snakes. Cloverfield will drop on January 18th, this upcoming Friday, as has been promised since July when we were first introduced. I won't deny that I have this worried feeling in the back of my mind, that I'm trying to suppress, that is wondering whether this could be the next Snakes on a Plane. I really, really don't want it to flop like that, so my question is importantly, will it live up to the hype?

Before I get into the details on this, I will say up front that I'm expecting nothing but excellence. Everything I've heard from the few people who've seen it has been nothing but positive. I don't have a doubt in my mind (well, expect for what I mentioned above) that this is going to be awesome and that it'll do very well. However, I've been known to be wrong previously and over-predict certain situations. It's mid-January and people are all going back to school this week, so I'm just not entirely sure how it'll turn out. I can only cross my fingers and hope for the best.

There are a couple of things really going against Cloverfield's immense success, unfortunately. First off, in last week's Sunday Discussion, we discussed how most January movies suck, and how studios use it as dumping grounds for bad movies. Secondly, there are extensive nationwide early screenings on Tuesday night, and after the crowds who really want to see it have all done so by then, will the buzz still carry over to the weekend when it actually counts? Like Snakes on a Plane, once the people who want to really go see it have seen it, no one else will, even it is a great movie - at least, that's what I'm concerned of.

On the other side of the equation, I have a feeling that Paramount's marketing team is a lot smarter than New Line's (who put out Snakes on a Plane). And when this turns out as successful as everyone is expecting it to be, it'll go to show what great marketing can do (and become a model to follow). And more than anything it will go to show how incredible Paramount is at marketing, pulling off two non-sequels in less than a year's time that both became enormous blockbusters. Transformers has already done that, now it's Cloverfield's turn.

What do you think? Will Cloverfield live up to the hype? This is a two part question: 1) will it be as awesome as everyone wants it to be, and 2) will it perform as well at the box office as expected? What do you think? Not only do I really hope it achieves both of those, but at this moment, I actually believe it will be amazing and make money. Just wait and see!

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  • Stephen
    I think it will leave up to the hype, but like you I have that feeling back there that it could go wrong, because you never really know how it will turn out until you see it.
  • Kris
    You were seriously expecting Snakes on a Plane to be anything beyond what it was? Wow. Oh and Transformers didn't really need marketing - it needed to be a movie about giant robots called Transformers to sell tickets.
  • jason_md2020
    Will it live up to the hype? If the script & the characters are as well thought out & executed as the marketing campaign then yes it will. As for box office? Who knows? By the way, would it be to much to hope for that this will be on an IMAX screen somewhere?
  • Jojo
    No this won't live to the hype. As for you Alex i think you should adjust your expectations because this movie already got its first bad review and not only that but the director's previous movies have SUCKED hardcore. This will be a mediocre movie at best.
  • Jojo
    ^ oh i meant its first bad official professional critic review
  • Tirrell
    Lmao, you thought Snakes on a plane would be good?! Lol. Man, you was trippin. Snakes on a plane!!! Lol. Now, I do think the movie will live up to the hype based off the trailers and what few people I've talked too that have seen the movie. Lol Snakes on a plane!
  • Rew
    All the reviews I've read have been very positive. I don't think you have to worry about the early screenings thing, from what I understand about it only a lucky few are going to get in. I have absolutely no shred of doubt in my mind that this movie will live up to the hype. Box Office performance is a little more hard to predict. But I still think that the movie would do good enough to make back its production costs on the opening weekend alone. What is the opening weekend numbers that people are expecting from this movie?
  • scar
    you need some love in here alex, I feel ya....snakes on a plane is so bad ...that it's great. just like jeeper creepers (what did you think of that one)....I don't know ....I'm one of those fans that....if I like a director or music or an actor....i'll go see or listen whatever they put out.....if metallica put out a country album, spielberg/lucas/scorcese did a musical or in this case whatever JJ has ties to ....I will go see wharver....i was such a sucker for felicity, alias, now lost....and yes MI3....I'll go and love whatever hi will put out....have you seen JJ's performance in Six degrees of Separation???? yes that one with will smith (should've gotten a nominaton....but whatever)
  • Movie Lover
    I don't know what to predict. But as I mentioned a few days ago, if this is going to be an updated Godzilla movie (which is what it appears to be in the trailers I've seen), then it could certainly not live up to the hype. Also, I am worried b/c it has been said in some articles that the audience will get a good look at what is ravaging the city...and sometimes that can turn out cheesy and terrible. Sometimes the unseen or barely seen enemy is much scarier. Unless somehow JJ Abrams came up with some completely bad ass creature that will just knock your socks off. But what would that be? I think the idea of making the movie from the perspective of the 'little people' on the ground and using the hand-held video camera is what will make it unique. I'm holding out hope that it will be good. Not spectacular. But just good. That's all I really want. Please don't suck. Or be predictable.
  • Terry
    I think there are so many things we don't know about this movie that a lot of people are concerned of being disapointed. Personaly I NEVER trust those critics and their review. People have different taste. If I want to go see a movie, it's because of the passion put into it. JJ Abrams has already proved that everything he does is way more than entertaining to me. I can feel the passion on everything he does. He IS the new Spielberg. I will go to see Cloverfield next Friday without any expectations. I will sit tight for a good ride, like if I would ride a good and exciting rollercoaster... and I just can't wait :)
  • Jojo, where is this first bad professional critics review?? As far as I know, no one has reviewed it besides Harry and Jeffrey Wells, and both were very positive. Link please??
  • cornholio_by_the_sea
    I never have wasted time paying attention to a critics review. I go see what appeals to me. The Cloverfield trailers are well done in that they definately make you want to know WTF is going on. However, a truly good movie will make it on it's own merit. Anything hyped to the maximum overkill like this gives me cause to be wary. Abrams is a big name I guess if you are a TV fan. I require a bit more substance and am not impressed by that fact alone. All in all, the trailers have been done well enough so I think the initial turnout wil be quite good. It remains to be seen what the buzz after will be.
  • avoidz
    I'll see Cloverfield sometime on DVD, depending on good or bad reviews. I saw the new trailer before I Am Legend the other night, and the brief shaky cam shots gave me a headache on the huge screen I was watching. I don't think Cloverfield will be a huge hit; it has more of a cult following before it's even released.
  • chris
    i have mixed feelings on this. I think the hand held video format may be its down fall aswell as its unique selling point.... The action parts will no doubt be in shakycam-o-vision, and this will spoil it after a while (see 28 Weeks Later for a film where the shaky cam action is used to brilliant effect in the opening infected scene, then it settles down later). The Bourne series was ruined because of the shaky cam action scenes, this could follow it. Ah well,got until Feb 2nd in the UK (i think) so plenty of time to read reviews and dodge spoilers!
  • Enola
    Great movie? nah, but it will be good enough I guess. Live up to the hype? No chance in hell. This movie is more hyped than 300, and 300 was nothing more than a good at best movie. Hype just doesn't make a movie better...
  • DJ
    I think that the movie will live up to the hype.But it could be boring so I would say 50 50 on weather it lives up to the hype or just all hype
  • Nathan
    I cant believe anyone thought Snakes on a Plane would be good or gross anything spectacular. Cloverfield will live up to the hype i believe....or at least hope so.
  • Jared Mullen
    First time I saw the trailer to snakes on a plane i'm like this movie is going to suck and it did. I think it will live up to the hype. never listen to critics, have you noticed they bash horror movies and the like and hail romance and political movies. i thought AVP requiem was awesome but the critics said there was bad acting, but i didn't notice any bad acting. bottom line see it if you want to and don't listen to critics. just remember, it's going to be the best night ever.
  • Jared
    First time I saw the trailer to snakes on a plane i'm like this movie is going to suck and it did. I think it will live up to the hype. never listen to critics, have you noticed they bash horror movies and the like and hail romance and political movies. i thought AVP requiem was awesome but the critics said there was bad acting, but i didn't notice any bad acting. bottom line see it if you want to and don't listen to critics. just remember, it's going to be the best night ever.
  • Jared
    I don't understand the "Snakes On A Plane" comparison, as the movie and it's trailers (sp?) let us know what the movie was about... Snakes On A Plane. A corny movie with a corny plot. I did enjoy the movie, however. "Cloverfield," I hope and feel it will live up to o it's hype. This movie seems to have all of the popular (and maybe played out) characteristics of a big-budget alien film: pick a large US city to destroy, demolish landmarks (Statue Of Liberty), big and scary alien, send New Yorkers running for their lives, and MAYBE some sort of political undertone. If this film sucks all the way through, you have to appreciate the CGI and corny story. If this sucks, I think it will wind up being like, FOR ME that is, "Volcano." A volcano below Wilshire boulevard and Tommy Lee Jones being our savior. What's not to like about that? Okay, I'm done ranting. My first time posting, but a longtime visitor to the site. I can't wait to see "Cloverfield."
  • avoidz
    Tommy Lee Jones saving us from a volcano. That's what's been missing in cinema in recent years :)
  • Peter
    Caught a screening of it tonight... I'll just say I had goosebumps throughout darn near the whole movie. I went in with no expectations while some people were stoked to see it and others were blasé about it. The only thing I knew about it was that some thing attacks Manhattan! Trust me, you won't be disappointed. I haven't seen so many moviegoers walk out of a theater talking about this scene and that scene. Don't get sucked in and distracted by the hype. Just buy your ticket, sit down, turn your cell phone off and enjoy.
  • Susan
    I thought it was a great movie. Scary, decent acting and pretty intense the whole way through. Totally unique. If you didn't mind the shaky camera of The Blair Witch Project, it won't bother you for this one either. VERY COOL MONSTER MOVIE!! Enjoy.
  • John
    This movie was absolutely one of the worst movies I have ever seen. This movie almost made Snakes on a Plane look good... please!!

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