I will of course lj-cut all this spoiler-laden description of it's awfulness and why I thought it was so awful.
So here's the movie. Monster appears out nowhere and blunders about NYC destroying buildings at random and roaring. People act like idiots. Little monsters that look nothing like big monster drop off it for unknown reasons. Little monsters bite people (once?) which causes bitten person to explode? Military acts like scared little girls. People die occasionally. Military levels NYC with nuke. Monster is dead? Who the fuck knows.
In more detail...
So a giant monster appears in NYC during some 20-30 somethings party. The city shakes like an earthquake. Idiots decide the best place to go during what feels like an earthquake... is the roof. Flaming debris rains down on them and they decide the roof isn't such a great place after all so lets run down willy-nilly into the street instead. Oh wait, flaming debris can fall to street level too, oops. A miniature Statue of Liberty head drops into the street from way the fuck over there presumably because the monster hit it/threw it... why just the head? Who the fuck knows, the rest of the statue seems fine later minus it's head. So hey, the streets are dangerous too,a nd the Empire State Building (?) is coming down now too, let's run back inside where we probably should have stayed in the first place.
Okay, so dust has cleared almost immediately, so let's move out, we live in downtown NYC so of course we have no cars, and public transportation has completely disappeared in the 15 minutes since the attack started... so it's the walking ticket. So when a giant monster is attacking, let's head for a bridge where we're completely exposed... cool. So on the bridge... drama element girl calls... I'm hurt... can't move... bleeding... save me. Of course, have to go do that... she did sleep with him a month ago, and they were best friends since they were kids after all...a nd she's the hottest girl in the movie apparently, so why not? But wait... we've gotten separated on the bridge... and oh no, the monster randomly attacks the bridge where we're completely exposed, and oh no, the brother is dead. Run off the bridge!
So his brother is dead, and for some reason, his friend keeps taping this entire time. He's a real video-journalist in the making I guess, even though he didn't want to film at all in the first place and doesn't know how to use the camera other than to let it run, which may be the only reason it's still going.
So his brother's dead, and his response... fuck, my cell phone battery is dead! Gotta find a new one to hear rest of drama girl! Looting has commenced so that's easy, just loot a cell phone battery, which for some reason... is pre-charged in the store? Well, okay, no let battery charge for 24 hours prior to use here. So let's stand around in the store debating the situation. Oh look, little creatures that don't resemble the big creature are dropping off it. Maybe we should leave...
So they leave... and run into big creature. And like ninja, the military arrives behind them, and tada, they're int he middle of the fire fight! Little creatures run at trained military personnel, who shoot at them, and then immediately run away like little girls. Invincible 20-30 somethings decide to take to the subway. Apparently, in the 15 or 20 minutes that have passed, this entire part of NYC has been evacuated, and no one else though to take cover in the subway as it's a ghost town down there. All trains have ceased, and there's nobody. But they can't go back up the other side of the platform because the monster is still there. Little creatures apparently decide the subway isn't interesting yet and let them rest.
So they hang out in the subway platform. Mom calls... what's going on? Main character son... "Oh, we're all fine... they're evacuating us... but actually, your other son is dead. So good news, less gifts to buy at Christmas!?" Seems to hang up almost immediately on mom after bluntly telling her that her other son is dead to hold his face in his hand and mourn for like 15-20 seconds with the help of ex-brother's now ex-girlfriend. And well, socially awkward guy might as well try to copy-cat the notion and comfort the girl he's been eying all night too... only not really. And well, the monster seems to have moved on so we should probably keep going to find drama girl. So hey... the subway tunnel seems safe, let's go that way!
So they enter the subway tunnel... which is a great idea... let's wander around int he dark underground near an electrified third rail? Brilliant! But hey, after stumbling mostly blindly for a while, let's use the light on the camera to show our way! Oh hey, rats are running through here too, I wonder why, hey what's that sound... let's use the nightvision, OMG LITTLE CREATURES! Little creatures attack, and seem like they bite several people several times, but apparently they mostly just like ripping shirts and cause minor scratches and abrasions as they only bite one girl... the non-talkative depressed-looking aloof one who wasn't supposed to be at the party anyway. So OH NO, LITTLE CREATURE WILL MAYBE BITE US?! Let's beat them off with a random pipe or blunt object we picked up nearby? And fists? Wait, aren't these the same little creature that sent the trained military guys with guns running like little girls? These must be weaker ones or something as these ones go down relatively easily when hit with anything at hand. But whatever, let's high-tail it into an randomly unlocked maintenance room... because those are always unlocked. Whew, safe from little creatures who don't hang on very well.
So we're in a maintenance room, and aloof girl has been bitten. Let's use a crowbar to pry open the aquafina machine to clean her wounds. Ouch, looks bad. Should we die in the tunnels, in the room, or in the streets outside the other exit? Well, let's try the exit, we have to go save drama girl still, otherwise, the underground room with locked metal doors and a big supply of fresh water would be cool. But hey, let's not take the crowbar with us, even though simple blunt objects seem to be effective weapons... let's leave that behind. So let's go out the exit into the subway again, and then threw some glass doors towards a bright light into an underground department store or something. Aloof girl looks like she's turning zombie but says she's fine, so let's keep going. And hey, MILITARY GUYS! Cool, they'll save us. Military guys rush them into emergency triage/containment area inside the store.
Hey, pay attention, we need to save this girl that slept with me, I might have chance with her still! Military guys say, your friend is fucked and so are you if you go out there. Aloof girl says... uh guys, I don't feel so well, and my eye is bleeding now. Military guys yell "SHE'S BEEN BITTEN!" and run like little girls into the hallway to let the medical technicians take care of it. Of course, no one noticed of care that she'd been bitten before despite the giant bandage on her shoulder and blood and pale-ness. Military people aren't that observant apparently even though it was blatantly obvious to the audience that she was fubar and fading fast. And even though they'd obviously dealt with bitten people before, as bleeding from the eye was enough to let them know she had been. But anyway, they try to quarantine her, which means taking her behind a translucent screen to get the most effect from her blood splattering as she randomly explodes? Apparently the little creatures make things explode when they bite them... why? Who knows. Doesn't seem very useful... I mean, bite them and infect them with new little creatures who explode out? Sure. Or bite them... and just kill them... but what purpose does making them explode serve? Whatever, that doesn't matter, it's not important, move on!
So hey, military guys and three remaining 20-30 somethings are still out int he hallway where they ran like little girls. And hey, kid, you sound serious about rescuing your friend, so here's a little classified military heads-up... we've been fighting this monster for all of like 45 minutes, and the military has already decided we're going to nuke NYC and level it at 6AM, so just so you know, this is classified or anything, I'm telling everyone, and also, here's a drop point to escape from just in case too. I'm telling you all this because I'm nice, and you seem nice too, so you kids run along now and have fun rescuing your friend! Come back safe!
So they leave to go rescue drama girl again. And on the way they pass a random horse-drawn carriage calmly trotting down the street, but fuck, that couldn't be a faster more efficient mode of travel so we'll let it trot on by and continue on foot. And hey, we arrived at drama girl's building, only, it's partially destroyed and leaning on another building. She's on the ground floor right? Nope, 39th... damn. So let's climb the mostly intact building, jump onto the roof of the other building, then go down to 39? Sure, sounds good. So the first thing they do as soon as they enter the building.... THEY TRY THE FUCKING ELEVATOR.
Now, I don't live in a large city, and the buildings around here aren't taller than three stories, but even I know... during an earthquake, when a building is damaged, etc.. you don't use elevators... you just don't. And of course, when they don't work anyway, they take to the stairs... and go up 49 stories or so. That would take fucking forever. Particularly when they've been injured and running around the last hour. But they manage, and cross over to the roof, go back down presumably 10 stories or so, and find drama girl. She's fallen and can't get up because she impaled herself on some rebar and is just laying there being helpless. She's a girl after all, and this is a monster movie. So they pull her off the rebar, and sit her down, tie a rag around her shoulder and say... let's move. So they climb back up 10 stories to the roof, and OMG, the creature is heading right for them and the building they're on... why, who knows, he seems to blunder their way a lot. So they cross back over to the other building real quick, and OMG, little creatures int he stairwell! Well, here's a handy blunt object again, and one hit will dispatch them into writhing on the ground, so down you guy little guy! Seriously, the military needs to recruit unarmed young adults, because they're far more effective than the trained soldiers. Anyway, they then descend another 49 stories to the ground. And OMG, THE BIG CREATURE IS RIGHT HERE! All of a sudden, rebar girl who couldn't lift herself off some metal, and who just transversed 59 stories of buildings stairs, is perfectly capable of running around and outdistancing camera guy who's still filming. Whatever. Onwards!
So they get to the helicopter rescue area, and for some reason, they're using tiny 4-seater helicopters to evacuate people. So the first helicopter, only the dead brother's girlfriend gets on. And off she goes never to be seen again. Presumably she lives? Also, somewhere in the movie, they said the F14's were 30 minutes out I think... where the fuck are they flying from? There's got to be bases closer to NYC than that. I'm sure there are. "We'll be there in 30 minutes, or your bombing and missiles are free!" So the other three people get on the second helicopter which takes off... seemingly very slow, as if they don't care there's a bombing run incoming.
So let's evacuate by helicopter... and how do we evacuate by helicopter? Our brilliant evacuation router parallels the BIG GIANT MONSTER and the BOMBING RUN. WTF? Shouldn't an evacuation route go the opposite way of the BIG FUCKING MONSTER and the BOMBING? What is it, the scenic evacuation route that gives you fool's eye view of the creature? This is one giant WTF moment. So the creature gets bombed by a B-2 bomber... only, this B-2 Stealth Bomber is flying so low it's easily visible by handi-cams. Not very fucking stealthy, but hey, maybe they don't think it calls for it. Apparently, it can bomb all way up to 50000ft... and we have smart bombs that track their targets... but in this case, let's fly in real low for some reason, whatever. So the B-2 bombs the creature... and it goes down. Why they think this will work when numerous tank rounds, RPGs, etc haven't worked all night, and haven't even scratched it for that matter is beyond me. But whatever, let's try it. So the evacuation helicopter is right beside it when it goes down and camera dude of course has to celebrate... FUCK YEAH, TAKE THAT, OH SHI- ... and OMG, GIANT SURPRISE, creature lunges out of the dust and debris to knock the helicopter out of the air. For some reason, the creature really has it in for these particular people, or else they're just really unlucky on a cosmic scale.
So the helicopter goes down... in Central Park. Crashes... camera still running through, that's one super fucking durable camera, it's been through so much, and still take crystal clear images. Maybe it's in a cushioned black box or something. Anyway, girl wakes up, wakes up camera guy, wakes up main dude... we gotta get out of here! So they pull main dude out because apparently his leg is messed up. And because they don't give a fuck about the armed military guys int he helicopter at all, they decide to take off without even checking on them. Of course, body armored military guys die in helicopter crashes, but casual party-clothed invincible 20-30 somethings are fine other than scrapes and bruises again. So they decide to take off, and camera guy almost forgets the camera... so he goes back to get it, a whole 5-10 feet... and OMFG, THE MONSTER IS STANDING DIRECTLY ABOVE HIM. Where it came from? Who the fuck knows, it's shakes the earth with earthquake force when it walks, but like a ninja, it appeared and was waiting for them to regain consciousness from the crash just so it could pick on them some more. It really hates them like I said. Maybe it knows they killed some of it's little guys.
So the big giant creature completely ignore the two injured people who make up a bigger target 10 feet away and who should in all rights be more in his field of perception, to attack the guy who is practically standing directly beneath. Maybe the creature doesn't like being filmed? He puffs up his air bag cheeks which a re still uninjured after numerous bombs, sniffs his nose orifice thing, then leans down and consumes camera guy and camera... or something. It's hard to tell because the camera is whirling in all directions, and after wards, the upper half, or at least the head of camera guy along with camera fall back to the ground... camera still works of course, maybe he just picked him up and shook him like a puppy? Who knows, his head is intact though. So main dude and drama girl run back over to his body approximately 10 seconds later, GIANT CREATURE seems to have disappeared using his ninja skills as fast as he arrived because the happy couple don't seem to be afraid to run up to their friend's body who was just mangled right in front of them. Happy couple aren't mangled, no loud footsteps are heard, but monster seems absent for unknown reason. maybe he really only had it in for the camera guy?
Happy couple wander off through the park together to take shelter under a bridge. They wouldn't want to find a bunker-like structure like a subway platform to take shelter in before the nuke, that'd be silly, it's much safer under an open-air above-ground small bridge. Any New Yorkers recommend 8 better places to go near that bridge? So they decide... well, we're giving up, the bombs'a'comin, let's record some last info on our trusty indestructible handi-cam of doom which seems to have the LONGEST LASTING FUCKING BATTERY IN THE HISTORY OF MANKIND. Apparently, battery technology takes a large leap in the next 4 years. So does digital storage, as they're also recording on the same SD card too apparently. Although, that's somewhat conflicting, as the beginning of the movie says digital SD card, but at the party the main dude refers to it as a tape if I remember right? "Did you change the tape?! never mind, it doesn't matter..."
So anyway, last words recorded, nuke hits, bridge collapses, the end. Monster dead? Who knows? People dead? Maybe? Conclusion? None. Obviously the cam or it's content survive, and if the cam survived, the people very well could have too as they seem just as indestructible. And hey, our military wouldn't want to try and lure the creature out of NYC first? Fuck no, let's just let it run amok in the city and then nuke the whole thing after 8 hours or so. I mean really, who the fuck needs NYC anyway? After all, there's probably a good 3-4 buildings down, and another 10 or so damaged. Wipe it all out, move on, start over, let's not even try anything else, that'd be fucking silly.
And yes, I know the backstory provided by the viral marketing crap explains some of the stuff like where the monster came from, etc, but that really doesn't help the rest of the movie. or the shaky handi-cam which does really make you sick. The creature did look fairly cool I thought, too bad he never really did anything other than wander about, and take no damage from numerous attacks.
So yeah... my retelling of Cloverfield, don't waste your money, watch old Godzilla movies. Watch just about anything else. Save yourself from a migraine.
Afterward people were vocally yelling in the theater that they wanted their money back. My friends and I final thought were... I hope JJ Abrams doesn't fuck up the new Star Trek like that...