15 January 2008 | kanerazor
Some people have derisively compared this film to The Blair Witch Project because it was all told from the point of view of someone's shaking camera. Unless you have motion sickness, I don't think that's a bad thing. What matters is who's in front of the camera. While The Blair Witch Project featured annoying people screaming at each other, this movie actually made me care about the characters. In fact if it had continued with the romantic drama tone established during the first half hour, I STILL think it would have been worth watching and that's the biggest compliment I can give it.
Of course people will be watching this movie for the visceral pleasure and Colverfield delivers. Many thrilling visual and sound effects wowed me (there were a few times I yelled out in shock at a sudden scare). Any horror film will also benefit from a sense of entrapment and this movie pulls off the seemingly impossible feat of making New York City seem claustrophobic because there was seemingly nowhere to hide from the monster.
What is the monster? Whatever it is clearly is meant to be an allegory for the carnage 9/11 inflicted on New York, much the same way Godzilla was meant to be an allegory for the damage inflicted on Japan by the atom bomb. There are moments seemingly recreating the documentary footage from 9/11, and they give the film verisimilitude. Touching upon real life horror, plus creating characters that we can relate to and care about, and assaulting our senses with incredible sights and sounds leads to entertainment worth watching many times over. Perhaps the 80 minute run time will bother some people, but on the other hand I think that's better than a film wearing out its welcome. Great job J.J. Abrams and company!