CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery

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CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#1
Posted: 1/8/08 at 9:41am
Am I the only one who seems to be turned off by the trailer from the already derivative-looking CLOVERFIELD? The New York setting, the explosion in the distance, people yelling "oh my GAAWD"? Does this not strike one as overly imagistic of a certain heartbreaking national tragedy of some six years ago?

I hated Speilberg's WAR OF THE WORLDS for many reasons, chief among them the fact that I felt he used 9/11-ish imagery to put the audience into a tense and suspenseful place (having Dakota Fanning turn her cornflower blue eyes into the camera and intone in her best scared voice "Is it t-t-terrorists?" didn't help). But if the previews for CLOVERFIELD are any indication, WAR was a masterpiece of subtlety, this just looks tasteless and cheap. And derivative. And poorly acted.

Am I just being sensitive and reading too much into good fun entertainment or has the world such a short memory span that 9/11 is great fodder for a scary monster movie?
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#2
Posted: 1/8/08 at 11:16am
I don't know. From the previews, I didn't really associate 9/11 with it, despite the fact that it takes place in the City. I am just taking it as a run of the mill monster movie.

But sometimes I am slow on the uptake when it comes to 9/11 parallels.
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#2
Posted: 1/8/08 at 11:39am
I didn't get 9/11 from it at all. If anything, it is reminding me of the new Will Smith movie. Isn't it a monster doing all the damage in Cloverfield? Or some wolf like things?
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#3
Posted: 1/8/08 at 11:44am
I didn't get 9/11 from it - more a monster movie. But I can see where you're coming form Borstalboy.

Side note - I'm curious about it, because I'm curious about anything from J.J Abrams (big time LOST fan here. Also dig Alias).
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#4
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:02pm
Thanks, Borstal, I got 9/11 INSTANTLY. By the 3rd viewing, I was pissed off. It's kind of the Rudy Guiliani of films, exploiting 9/11 while pretending it's about something else, you know, folks, just some sci-fi fun. Watch NY implode, explode and otherwise fall to ruin! But not the way it really happens, sillies! I'm a New Yorker, I was there on 9/11, and I remember being told such imagery would likely disppear from American films forever.

I guess if this movie wasn't made, the terrorists win, huh?
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#5
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:03pm
i get it & it bugs the hell outta me.
& i got the same thing from the will smith trailers.
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#6
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:06pm
No, I take it as a monster movie a la Godzilla. I don't think they're using 9/11 imagery - it's just a monster attacking the city. Of course, one can always see the explosions and suffer upsetting flashbacks, but I think the best bet is to just take it for what it is. If it upsets you, don't see it - it'd be totally understandable. I personally am very excited and have been trying to figure out the clues!
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#7
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:06pm
Just asking, but, would it feel less 9/11 if it were set in a different city?
"TheatreDiva90016 - another good reason to frequent these boards less."<<>> I hesitate to give this line of discussion the validation it so desperately craves by perpetuating it, but the light from logic is getting further and further away with your every successive post. <<>> -whatever2
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cloverfield and 9/11 imagery#8
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:13pm
cloverfield and 9/11 imagery

nope doesn't look anything like this does it?

cloverfield and 9/11 imagery

who cold insinuate such a thing about this movie?

i almost puked when i saw that poster in the subway station at wall street. wall street!!
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Updated On: 1/8/08 at 12:13 PM
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#9
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:15pm
Whatya mean "they're not using 9/11 imagery." Excuse me, explosions around the tops of NY skyscrapers, people fleeing across Manhattan. Falling debris. What 9/11 imagery are you thinking they avoided? Cheney in a bunker? If it doesn't bother you, great, your prerogative; but I think the associations are a little more immediate than Godzilla.
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#10
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:15pm
I don't know, Diva. But something about the handheld camera angles and the verite approach to the whole thing recalls 9/11 for me. The Will Smith movie didn't bother me that much.

Filmmakers will use recent tragedy to underscore or bring depth to a scene. For instance, Arthur Penn said he used the idea of JFK's assasination for the overall effect of the last scene of BONNIE & CLYDE, with Warren Beatty's head coming apart much in the same way JFK's did. But that was integrated artfully and with no truly obvious references to the fact, it was its own thing. I truly find it hard to believe that the makers of CLOVERFIELD had no idea they were invoking the twin towers tragedy showing a New York skyline with a skyscraper partially exploding in fire while frightened New Yorkers watch helplessly from afar.
"Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they've been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It's an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It's a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing. ~ Muhammad Ali
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#11
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:16pm
yeah, but people would have said the same thing about movies like Independence Day or Godzilla if they came out after 9/11. But they didn't. But now, if one watches either of those films, especially I.D, the parallels would be there. It's all about perception, and I don't percieve Cloverfield to be a commentary on 9/11, though I understand if others do.
"I'm an American, Damnit!!! And if it's three things I don't believe in, it's quitting and math."
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#12
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:21pm
what surprises me is how the media seems to be ignoring the inevitable outcry that will happen by people who obviously did see the connection between the two. I expect to see the headline: "J.J. Abrams: Terrorism propagandist?" or "J.J Abrams: secret al Queda operative" any day now.
"I'm an American, Damnit!!! And if it's three things I don't believe in, it's quitting and math."
Updated On: 1/8/08 at 12:21 PM
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#13
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:25pm
Y'all do realize that Godzilla was "cashing in" on the Atomic Bombs being dropped on Japan, don't you? Don't you?
No good can possibly come from using this vast wasteland of error and deliberate deceit. You should get off of it and warn others away. You should make sure your children and grandchildren know what a corrupt and morally bankrupt institution it truly is.
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#14
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:50pm
I didn't really see the parallel, but that might come from not being a New Yorker. It just looks like another monster movie with Blair Witch Project undertones. Or not so under.

What I always find funny is how disasters like these mostly happen in New York and LA. The rest of the country is pretty much spared.

Do we find it appalling when they make earthquake movies that take place in LA?
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#15
Posted: 1/8/08 at 12:59pm
I don't think they purposely drew a parallel, but there is a parallel.

We learned about this in our Multicultural Film class. Whenever there's a war, the film industry busts out these movies about GOOD versus EVIL. Look at the classic horror films and when they came out. Movies about something tangible and evil, with characteristics we can distinct, and Good overcoming them.

McCarthyism started in the late 1940's and drove through the 50's. The Day the Earth Stood Still came out in 51'. Creature from the Black Lagoon came out in '54. Invasion of the Body Snatchers came out in '56. Plan 9 from OuterSpace came out in '59.

What I'm noticing about OUR own horror movies for today, post 9/11, is that the ending isn't always happy. War of the Worlds-- they were defeated, but there are more out there. The Invasion-- again, defeated, but at what costs? When a Stranger Calls-- the girl is saved, but there's that ending. Notice how these are all REMAKES too, but with different spins to fit our own social standards.
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Updated On: 1/8/08 at 12:59 PM
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#16
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:07pm
Exactly, Pippin. Auggie, I mean, "9/11 imagery," is, unfortunately, explosions and other horrible things. It's a monster movie and it's hard to make a monster movie without explosions and people screaming and running. I seriously doubt (at least I hope it's not the case) Abrams is trying to capitalize on 9/11. Again, would it affect you as much if set in another city?

Also, the explosions aren't around the tops of buildings. The big explosion is seen from the roof of a building, but the explosion itself comes from the street and blows upward.

Updated On: 1/8/08 at 01:07 PM
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#17
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:15pm
I think Papa's poster comparison pretty much says it all.
"Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they've been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It's an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It's a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing. ~ Muhammad Ali
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#18
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:16pm
"Do we find it appalling when they make earthquake movies that take place in LA? "

Actually, I get a little bit of joy whenever I see LA being destroyed, and I live here!
"TheatreDiva90016 - another good reason to frequent these boards less."<<>> I hesitate to give this line of discussion the validation it so desperately craves by perpetuating it, but the light from logic is getting further and further away with your every successive post. <<>> -whatever2
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#19
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:17pm
Actually, if you're speaking about the movie itself and not JUST the poster, I can see where the handheld camera aspect would make for comparisons. I just personally didn't get the instant connection.
Updated On: 1/8/08 at 01:17 PM
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#20
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:20pm
Actually, I get a little bit of joy whenever I see LA being destroyed, and I live here


yeah, diva- Volcano was one of the best movies, for that reason alone. (that and the fact that Anne Heche played it "straight" that year.

ahhhhh, memories of the early 90's
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#21
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:20pm
Looking at papa's posted pics, I don't think he's capitalizing on it, but rather referencing it directly. And unless I'm mistaken, his comment on it is that it's "MONSTROUS".

There might be more to this flick than meets the eye.
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#22
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:21pm
They are using 9/11 imagery. The director of the movie has said so. He compares it to movies of the 50's (like Invasion of the Body Snatchers) using the fears of the cold war to scare people.
I saw an extended sequence online where people are running from the debris of a collapsed building that looks like it was taken straight from a newsreel of 9/11.
I have no problem with horror movies taking the fears of the day and using them to scare people. My problem with this movie is how SPECIFIC the images are. It's not alluding to anything...it's using very specific images to scare people. And I think it's cheap.
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#23
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:24pm
It really is an interesting argument. For instance, is something like Law and Order, which regularly draws from horrible incidents of people being murdered, raped, etc, and sometimes uses direct parallels and images, all right as opposed to using 9/11 imagery? It's just interesting to think of where the line should be drawn where you're using that as entertainment.
Updated On: 1/8/08 at 01:24 PM
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re: CLOVERFIELD and 9/11 imagery#24
Posted: 1/8/08 at 1:33pm
Since we're in the realm of conjecture, a hypothetical:

The 'monster' is a multi-limbed or headed beast that grows more limbs/heads as you remove them. The instant societal response is to want to kill it, which only exacerbates the situation. It's only when someone attempts to find out WHY it's attacking that they find a way to become 'safe' again.

There would be some serious questions raised that few have dared to approach in the period post 9/11.

And Erik - INVASION is the first movie I thought of (the original.)