There’s nothing here we don’t know already, but it’s nice to get confirmation from J.J. Abrams, who explained why The Cloverfield Paradox didn’t seem to fit together narratively (the cool Easter Egg notwithstanding). Just as 10 Cloverfield Lane had been a stand-alone script retrofitted into the Cloverfield universe, so too was The Cloverfield Paradox:
“Originally, it was written by Oren Uziel, who wrote a draft that was its own thing, and was around for a while. We started to think, ‘What are ways that this might fit into the world?’ But when we started shooting the movie, it was still something we were thinking about. Because the idea for the Cloverfield series was not so much that it be this narrative throughline, but more that they be these really fun sort of thrill rides. Like, if you imagine an amusement park, that’s a Cloverfield amusement park, and every ride has a different purpose, but they all connect in some way or another.”
I think of it more like this: It’s an amusement park, but at the end of every ride, YOU GET EATEN BY THE CLOVERFIELD MONSTER.
Abrams also confirmed what was so obvious from watching the film, namely that the Earth scenes were stapled onto the film because apparently focus groups wanted to know what was happening on Earth, and we all know that the best way to make a film is to listen to a bunch of yokels in a mall eating a corn dog on a fucking stick.
Not that it matters if The Cloverfield Paradox were bad. Paramount offloaded it onto Netflix, which paid $50 million for the streaming rights to the film, and it’s probably already been seen by millions of subscribers already. No amount of negative reviews is going to keep those subscribers from watching an essentially free movie that everyone is talking about, even if it’s not for the right reasons.
The fourth Cloverfield movie is also due out in theaters this October.