10 Cloverfield Lane is a 2016 American science fiction psychological horror film directed by Dan Trachtenberg, produced by J. J. Abrams and Lindsey Weber and written by Josh Campbell, Matthew Stuecken and Damien Chazelle. The film stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Goodman, and John Gallagher Jr. It is the second installment in the Cloverfield franchise. The story follows a young woman who, after a car crash, wakes up in an underground bunker with two men who insist that an event has left the surface of Earth uninhabitable.
This one sees Michelle, who has broken up with her boyfriend Ben, driving through rural Louisiana. She gets hit by a truck and knocked off the road, falling unconscious. She wake up in a room in a bunker and is met by Howard, the man who owns the underground bunker. He then explains that he brought her there for her protection, claiming that the air outside has been poisoned by nuclear or chemical fallout from an unknown force. She doesn’t believe him initially but then meets Emmett, another survivor who found his way to it and has his arm fractured and in a sling.
Howard takes her to the viewport of the bunker’s exit hatch, showing her two dead pigs outside as evidence of the fallout; Michelle also sees Howard’s truck, and recognizes it from the accident. Michelle privately relays her concerns about Howard’s motivations to Emmett. At dinner Michelle takes Howard’s keys and makes her way to the hatch, but as she is about to open it, a woman, Leslie, covered in skin lesions, slams against the window demanding she be let in, then collapses. Michelle openly returns the keys and agrees that Howard was right. Howard admits to accidentally hitting her car in his panic to get to the shelter. Things settle down as the trio become more relaxed but there is a slight hostility towards Emmett from Howard though he treats Michelle like a younger girl and even mentions the fact that he had a daughter who is dead. Howard enlists Michelle to fix the air filtration unit when it fails since she is small enough to fit through the vents; while repairing it, she finds a locked skylight, with the word “HELP” scratched into its glass and visible to anyone outside.
Further suspicious of Howard, Michelle and Emmett discover that Howard’s purported daughter was a young girl who had gone missing about two years earlier, and they suspect he abducted her to the bunker. They make plans to escape the bunker, creating a makeshift Hazmat suit behind Howard’s back. When Howard discovers tools and parts missing, he accuses the two of stealing them, threatening to immerse them in a barrel of perchloric acid. Emmett quickly takes responsibility of stealing the materials to make a weapon so Michelle would respect him, the way she seemingly respects Howard for wielding a gun. Howard accepts his apology but shots Emmett in the head instantly killing him. In shock, Michelle is desperately making final preparations to leave, when she is surprised by Howard. She manages to escape from him with the suit. En route, she knocks over the acid barrel, which starts an electrical fire in the bunker. It later explodes, killing Howard.
Wearing the suit Michelle goes outside but she sees birds and realizes that the air is cleaner now so she takes off the helmet. but then she suddenly sees a giant biomechanical alien spacecraft, drawn by the bunker explosion. A quadrupedal creature drops from the craft and chases Michelle, forcing her to hide in a shed. She then races towards the farmhouse, but the craft appears and emits a green gas that forces Michelle back into the suit. Her delay allows mechanical appendages from the ship to capture her, but she is able to craft a Molotov cocktail from items in Howard’s truck to throw into the ship. The fireball causes the appendage to drop her, and she is able to take the dead woman’s car and escape. As she nears the Texas border she hears radio chatter instructing any survivors to head to Baton Rouge to evacuate, but also requesting the help of anyone with military or combat training in Houston. At a crossroads, she pauses a moment before driving off towards Houston. In the distance, two larger alien craft can be seen in the sky.
I finally have watched all 3 of the Cloverfield movies although – I wonder how connected these films really are. This one is definitely the best acted and has a great story that is well written with strong characters. As a film I give it an 8.5 outta 10!