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4K Ultra HD Review: Cloverfield: 15th Anniversary – Limited Edition SteelBook

January 18, 2023

By John Corrado

It’s been fifteen years since director Matt Reeves and producer J.J. Abrams first unleashed their found footage monster movie Cloverfield in theatres on January 18th, 2008. Paramount is honouring the milestone by re-releasing the film on 4K Ultra HD this week, in a very nice new limited edition SteelBook set.

The film centres around a group of friends having a going away party who end up capturing first-hand footage of Manhattan coming under attack by a gigantic monster, as they try desperately to flee a ravaged New York City.

Steeped in post-9/11 allegories, Reeves’ debut film serves as an entertaining thriller that uses its shaky camerawork and narrow focus to enhance the chaotic, anxiety-inducing feeling of living through a hellish event. Watching it again now, Cloverfield both feels like a product of its time and has held up pretty well as a solid Godzilla tribute that packs a lot into a short, effectively tense little package (it’s under eighty minutes to credits).

The film’s digital camerawork holds up surprisingly well in 4K, offering an image that is surprisingly clear and sharp considering the source. The SteelBook set also boasts terrific new artwork (which the press release touts as “reviewed and approved by both Abrams and Reeves”), with a plastic slipcover featuring a camera lens design on the front that slips off to reveal a full view of the monster-ravaged city that extends around to the back cover. On the inside, we get an image of the carnage seen on a digital camera screen.

Made on a limited budget of $25 million, the film became a box office hit thanks to clever marketing (again, from the press release, it grossed over $172 million worldwide), and also sparked two loosely connected sequels in the so-called CloverVerse; the very different (but in my opinion superior) 2016 film 10 Cloverfield Lane, and the inferior The Cloverfield Paradox. With the 4K disc, bundled Blu-ray, and nifty new SteelBook packaging, this is a solid set for fans.

Bonus Features (4K Ultra HD):

The 4K disc includes a commentary track, and the set comes with a regular Blu-ray disc that contains a number of legacy bonus features. A code for a digital copy is also included in the package.

4K and Blu-ray:

Commentary by Director Matt Reeves

Blu-ray Only:

Special Investigation Mode

Document: 01.18.08: The Making of Cloverfield (28 minutes, 22 seconds)

Cloverfield Visual Effects (22 minutes, 32 seconds)

I Saw It! It’s Alive! It’s Huge! (5 minutes, 53 seconds)

Clover Fun (3 minutes, 56 seconds)

Deleted Scenes (Play All – 3 minutes, 25 seconds): Presented with optional commentary by Reeves.

Congrats Rob (22 seconds)

When You’re in Japan (1 minute, 23 seconds)

I Call That a Date (44 seconds)

It’s Going to Hurt (56 seconds)

Alternate Endings (Play All – 4 minutes, 29 seconds): Presented with optional commentary by Reeves.

Alternate Ending 1 (2 minutes, 6 seconds)

Alternate Ending 2 (2 minutes, 22 seconds)

Cloverfield: 15th Anniversary – Limited Edition SteelBook is a Paramount Home Entertainment release. It’s 84 minutes and rated 14A.

Street Date: January 17th, 2023

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