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The Cloverfield Paradox

Blu Ray

  • Score
    from 5 reviewers
    Review Date:
  • The Cloverfield Paradox: flawed yet fun with premium AV on Blu-ray.

    The Cloverfield Paradox Blu-ray Front Cover

    Disc Release Date:

  • Video
  • The Cloverfield Paradox Blu-ray dazzles with fine detail and color, despite lacking 4K and HDR perks; its filmic texture and depth impress yet leave some wanting more.

  • Audio
  • The Cloverfield Paradox's Dolby Atmos mix impresses with its immersive, intricate audio experience, delivering thunderous bass, clear dialogue, and enveloping effects from all angles, elevating the film's sonic intensity and engagement.

  • Extra
  • The Cloverfield Paradox Blu-ray features two 14-minute, HD featurettes exploring the film's creation and cast, with a promotional tone and insights into the making, yet lacks extensive extras.

  • Movie
  • The Cloverfield Paradox struggles with clunky sci-fi tropes and a disjointed plot, failing to match its predecessors' intrigue despite a promising setup and strong cast.

    Video: 87

    The Blu-ray video presentation of "The Cloverfield Paradox," while lacking the HDR and 4K UHD enhancements seen in its Netflix release, offers a commendably detailed and visually rich experience. Captured on 35mm and finalized with a 4K Digital Intermediate, the film's 1080p transfer (MPEG-4 AVC encoding, aspect ratio 2.39:1 on BD-50 layer) delivers a sharp and texturally nuanced image. With exceptional clarity, the release showcases intricate details such as skin textures, uniform specifics, and the interplay of light and shadow within the spacecraft's interior and the desolate landscapes of Earth. The filmic grain is fine and evenly distributed, adding to the overall cinematic quality without resulting in softness or loss of detail in darker scenes.

    Color reproduction on this Blu-ray is notable, albeit with a preference for cooler tones balanced by warmer flesh tones, maintaining fidelity within the film's designed aesthetic. The color palette may not be as vibrant or dynamic without HDR's benefit, but it remains well-saturated and faithful to its source. Black levels are deep and mostly consistent, though some scenes experience minor crush, which does not significantly detract from the viewing experience. The cooler, bluish hues of the spaceship contrast effectively with the occasional bursts of color from displays and lights, enhancing the visual depth and dimensionality of the scenes.

    However, it's not without its shortcomings; certain special effects betray their green-screen origins, and without Dolby Vision's dynamic metadata, colors and whites can occasionally appear muddy or lack precise contrast. This Blu-ray does an adequate job presenting "The Cloverfield Paradox" in high definition, respecting the film's original texture and composition while acknowledging areas where the absence of 4K and HDR technology is felt. Despite these limitations, Paramount has ensured the film receives a clean, artifact-free transfer that leverages maximum detail and color saturation possible at 1080p resolution, providing a visually satisfying experience even for discerning viewers.

    Audio: 91

    The Cloverfield Paradox's Blu Ray audio presentation is a direct assault on the senses, marrying potency with technical brilliance. Critics and audiences alike have noted that dialog occasionally becomes a victim to the film's ambitious audio mix, struggling to assert itself amid loud action sequences and a rich tapestry of effects and music. Yet, this hiccup barely detracts from an otherwise exemplary audio experience. Paramount’s Dolby Atmos mix is lauded for transforming a home viewing into a theatrical event. The low-frequency effects punctuate the silence with startling clarity, while the clever use of the sound stage envelops the viewer in a 360-degree auditory experience. Detailed soundscapes, from the subtle nuances of radio chatter slipping from front to rear channels to the overwhelming chaos of explosions and monstrous roars, showcase an intricate layering and positioning that goes beyond mere volume, adding a textured depth to each scene.

    A standout aspect of this audio presentation is its adept handling of directional effects, ensuring that every speaker in the Atmos setup works overtime to create an immersive environment. The dynamic range is impressive, from the whisper-quiet tension of anticipating dread to the full-force auditory onslaught of action sequences. The commitment to auditory detail is evident, allowing even the most minute sound elements to shine through with clarity and purpose. Additionally, this release offers an array of audio formats beyond the Atmos track, ensuring accessibility across various setups without compromising on an immersive experience.

    Paramount's dedication shines in their preservation of the Atmos track's integrity, a significant upgrade from previous limited streaming options. This approach not only showcases a respect for the film's intricate sound design but also elevates "The Cloverfield Paradox" into a reference-quality showcase of what home audio systems are capable of. The mix's careful balance of bombast with subtlety and its extensive use of the full sound stage makes it a memorable auditory journey, reflective of the film's chaotic beauty.

    Extra: 61

    The Blu-ray extras for "The Cloverfield Paradox" offer a glimpse behind the cinematic curtain but don't quite deliver the depth fans might crave. The two featurettes, rendered in 1080p HD, respectively delve into the film's production and its ensemble cast. "Things Are Not As They Appear" spends 14 minutes exploring the origins of the Cloverfield story, the script's inspirations, and the ambitious production design, yet often feels more promotional than insightful. Its counterpart, "Shepard Team: The Cast," also runs for about 15 minutes and offers a slightly more engaging look into the actors' perspectives and their characters' dynamics. Both extras, while professionally produced and offering some intriguing behind-the-scenes glimpses—like detailing the arm effects—ultimately feel like extended promotional pieces rather than comprehensive documentaries. They provide a basic overview without substantial depth or new revelations, fitting more into the EPK mold than offering anything particularly fresh or illuminating to the viewer.

    Extras included in this disc:

    • Things Are Not As They Appear: The Making of The Cloverfield Paradox: A behind-the-scenes look at the making of the film, discussing its ties to the Cloverfield universe and featuring input from the director, writer, and production team.

    • Shepard Team: The Cast: This featurette focuses on the cast of "The Cloverfield Paradox", presenting interviews with the actors and offering insights into their characters and experiences on set.

    Movie: 70

    The Cloverfield Paradox, the third installment in the loosely connected Cloverfield franchise, attempts to merge ambitious quantum and dimensional sciences with the series' signature mysterious allure but struggles to reach the heights of its predecessors. Directed by Julius Onah and penned by Oren Uziel, the film unfolds aboard the Cloverfield space station, where scientists embark on a daring experiment with a particle accelerator to solve Earth's energy crisis, only to potentially unleash chaos across dimensions. Despite a few striking visuals and intriguing moments, the screenplay results in a narrative that often feels fragmented and unclear, burdening viewers with the task of connecting disjointed story threads without sufficient character development, save for Eva Hamilton (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), who provides a scant focal point amidst the chaos.

    Moving beyond its initial surprise release on Netflix following the Super Bowl in 2018, The Cloverfield Paradox received a subsequent Blu-ray distribution by Paramount, showcasing an impressive A/V presentation. However, this shift from a stealth streaming debut to physical media does little to enhance the film's lackluster reception. Critics and audiences alike note the movie's generic amalgamation of sci-fi elements borrowed from classics like Event Horizon and The Thing, along with a narrative that, while it occasionally nods towards broader franchise connections, mostly treads water with predictable plot mechanisms and underdeveloped ideas.

    The ensemble cast, featuring prominent names such as Chris O'Dowd and Elizabeth Debicki alongside Mbatha-Raw, strives valiantly to anchor the film's lofty ambitions. Yet, the endeavor feels marred by an overreliance on genre tropes and a muddled execution of its core concepts, leaving it to feel like an agreeable but generic space thriller rather than a meaningful expansion of the Cloverfield saga. As it veers into territory that demands charts to decipher its intended message, The Cloverfield Paradox ultimately serves as a cautionary tale of how high concepts can falter without clear vision and robust storytelling.

    Total: 75

    The Cloverfield Paradox," while an attempt to continue the intriguing Cloverfield franchise, emerges as a conflicted installment, failing to reach the narrative and thematic heights of its predecessors. Despite its ambitious sci-fi premises and aspirations to weave intricate plot threads, the film stumbles with a script that doesn't quite deliver on coherence or originality, coupled with a direction that lacks the focused vision evident in earlier series entries. However, it's not without its merits; the film maintains a level of entertainment through its pulpy sci-fi endeavors and succeeds in delivering top-notch technical specifications on its Blu-ray release. Paramount Home Media Distribution has ensured that the visual and auditory experience is commendable, boasting reference-quality 1080p video presentation and an immersive Dolby Atmos audio track that heightens the viewing experience beyond the conventional.

    The acting and visual effects within "The Cloverfield Paradox" do not falter significantly and work within the confines of the established genre conventions, contributing positively to an otherwise middling affair. Noteworthy is the Blu-ray package itself, which, while not pushing into 4K territory, presents an excellent HD experience augmented further by a superb Dolby Atmos mix—arguably the release's standout feature. The additional content, including two featurettes totaling around 30 minutes, although not groundbreaking, provides some insights into the film's production and thematic intentions.

    In conclusion, while "The Cloverfield Paradox" may not be an essential centerpiece of the Cloverfield saga, its home release on Blu-ray presents a robust package for enthusiasts and completists of the series. Its stellar sound and video quality almost compensate for the film's narrative and creative missteps. For those vested in the Cloverfield universe or collectors looking to complete their series on physical media, this Blu-ray offers enough technical excellence and curiosities to warrant attention. Nonetheless, managing expectations about the film's place in the overarching narrative and enjoying it for its schlocky sci-fi charm might enhance appreciation.