[[caption-width-right:300:[[{{Tagline}} Something has found us.]]]]

->''"My name is Robert Hawkins... Approximately seven hours ago, some... thing attacked the city. I don't know what it is. If you found this tape, I mean if you're watching this right now, then you probably know more about it than I do."''

A monster movie released in 2008 co-produced by Creator/JJAbrams (''Series/{{Lost}}'', ''Series/{{Fringe}}'', ''Series/{{Alias}}'', ''Film/StarTrek'', ''Film/{{Super 8}}'', [[AttentionDeficitCreatorDisorder etc.]]), and directed by Matt Reeves. ''Cloverfield'' follows a group of New Yorkers as they attempt to rescue the girlfriend of protagonist Rob Hawkins (Michael Stahl-David, ''Series/TheBlackDonnellys'') during an attack by a massive building-sized creature. The film is seen through the perspective of Hudson "Hud" Platt, Rob's friend, who is [[InUniverseCamera carrying around a camcorder throughout the film documenting the events]].

The movie was shot fairly cheaply, for a budget of roughly [[http://boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=cloverfield.htm $25 million]]. The movie is seen through a [[FoundFootageFilms point-of-view perspective]], and features homages to older movies (e.g., the Art/StatueOfLiberty's head rolling down a Manhattan street was inspired by a poster for Creator/JohnCarpenter's ''Film/EscapeFromNewYork'').

The film has a SpiritualSuccessor in the form of ''Film/TenCloverfieldLane'' - in spite of using the ''Cloverfield'' title, the movie itself is not a direct sequel, but shares many of this film's themes.

'''Note:''' There were rumors for a time that ''Film/{{Super 8}}'', directed by Abrams and produced by Creator/StevenSpielberg, was a prequel. It is actually an unrelated film, though this hasn't stopped WildMassGuessing from fans who have noted similarities between the monsters in both movies.

!!This film provides examples of:

* TwentyThree: At the end of the film, Rob gives the date as "Saturday, May 23rd."
* AbhorrentAdmirer: Marlena does ''not'' appreciate Hud's interest in her.
* ActionGirl: When the protagonists are attacked by Clover's ticks in the subway, most of the characters run, apart from Marlena, who beats the shit out of one of them with a wooden plank.
* AllThereInTheManual: Information about the monster's possible origins and what happened immediately before the movie are all in the viral marketing campaign.
* AmbiguousGender: Clover. Apparently, there's evidence to support both claims.
* ApocalypticLog: The entire film.
* AttackOfThe50FootWhatever: The entire film is one big {{Reconstruction}}[=/=]{{Deconstruction}} of {{Kaiju}} films.
* AttentionDeficitOhShiny: The ''camera''. The monster almost never appears in full field of view or for very long because the camera is always panning away for some reason or another. Or no reason at all.
* BatScare: Non-winged example: a horde of rats runs toward, then right past, the main characters when they venture into the subway tunnels. The rodents don't attack, but they ''are'' running from something else...
* BehindTheBlack: ''Tanks'' sneak up on the camera. [[spoiler:And eventually the creature itself.]]
* BigApplesauce: The movie is set in New York City.
* BigBad: Clover is causing all the destruction, though he's not doing so out of malicious intent.
* BodyHorror: What happens when you're bitten by a parasite? [[spoiler:LudicrousGibs!]]
* CameraAbuse: Although the camcorder held by Hud suffers from both numerous drops ''and'' the detonation of an EarthShatteringKaboom, it -- or at least the video tape -- still survives.
* CallBack: The movie starts at 6.30 am one month prior, after Beth and Rob have their night together; [[spoiler:it ends at 6.30 ish when the monster gets Hammer Downed, with Beth and Rob dying together, chronologically. We also see Beth's apartment before the monster kills it. Jason, Rob's brother, says something about "cherishing moments no matter how fleeting", and Rob does it. Marlena also mentions the monster eating people, and then it ate Hud.]]
* DadaAd: One of the hidden special features on the [=DVD=] is an ad for Slusho and... ye gods...
* DamselInDistress: Rob's (and subsequently the group's) whole ill-advised foray into the city was to rescue his girlfriend Elizabeth.
%%* DeadpanSnarker: Marlena.
* {{Deconstruction}}: Instead of focusing on the monster pounding other monsters' faces in or wrecking the military, you're given the perspective from ordinary people... which makes one realize how horrific the bog-standard [[{{Kaiju}} giant-monster movie plot]] would be if it really happened, which brings it back to its original form. ''Film/{{Gojira}}'', often considered the first Kaiju film (and certainly the reason we use the Japanese word), is a very dark movie with long, lingering shots of the destruction and the long term injuries he caused.
** The very idea of a kaiju in itself is deconstructed as well; instead of being a supernatural beast, an allegorical character, or an out-of-this-world being, Clover is at his core a normal animal reacting to things the way any other animal would.
* DevelopingDoomedCharacters: The party is disturbed by a loud boom at 17:35. It's something of a relief for some viewers when the monster finally appears.
* DiabolusExNihilo: Unlike most giant monster movies, this one doesn't bother explaining the creature's origin, since the main character's viewpoint is too low on the ground. Thus, no scenes with generals or scientists standing around providing exposition. It just shows up and rampages around New York City.
* DidNotGetTheGirl: [[spoiler:Hud can do little but watch in horror as Marlena dies horribly and messily in front of him.]]
* DoesNotKnowHisOwnStrength: According to the [[WordOfGod developers]], [[spoiler:the Brooklyn Bridge scene was changed from a hand destroying the bridge to a tail knocking it down]], because they wanted to imply that Clover was doing its damage to the city ''unintentionally''.
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: Several critics have brought up the large amount of 9/11 imagery used in the film.
%%* DoggedNiceGuy: Hud.
* DownerEnding: [[spoiler:Hud is gnawed on by Clover. No one survives the bombing of Manhattan. Neither does Clover. [[NotQuiteDead Maybe.]]]]
** [[spoiler:It's assumed that Lily likely survived, as she was last seen boarding the first helicopter. But, even so, her boyfriend and friends died, and it's unlikely she'd ever get over this.]]
** [[spoiler:One of the alternate endings suggests that at least Beth survived the Hammerdown bombing.]]
* DwindlingParty: [[spoiler:Jason is killed when the bridge collapses, Marlena is killed by a parasite, Lily is evacuated, Hud is bitten in half by the monster, and Rob and Beth are caught in the nuclear explosion that kills it.]]
* EasterEgg: As [[http://www.cracked.com/article_19210_7-insane-easter-eggs-hidden-in-movies-tv-shows.html Cracked.com]] points out, the monster's face was actually hidden in the movie poster months before the movie came out.
* EldritchAbomination: This monster evokes this, though it's clearly influenced by various deep-sea creatures.
* TheEndOrIsIt: [[spoiler:After the credits, there's a broken sound recording of Rob saying "Help us". When reversed, it sounds like he's saying "It's still alive".]]
* EvilDetectingDog: Or rather evil-detecting rats. While the gang travel through the underground subway tracks, they encounter a swarm of rats. All running from the direction they were coming from. So they started to walk faster.
* FakeRealTurn: Meta-example: a lot of the posters for ''Film/EscapeFromNewYork'' showed the decapitated head of the Art/StatueOfLiberty lying in the street, an amazing shot which ''[[CoversAlwaysLie never actually appears in the movie itself]]''. ''This'' movie's poster, on the other hand, isn't lying; all these years later, ''Cloverfield'' finally delivers on the other movie poster's broken promise.
%%* FakeVideoCameraView
* FinalGirl: Possibly [[spoiler:Lily]].
* FiveSecondForeshadowing: When the gang arrives at the field hospital, we see a body with a horrendous injury to the stomach being wheeled past the camera; someone mentions it being from 'another bite', telling the observant viewer ''exactly'' what's in store for [[spoiler:Marlena]].
* FlashbackCut: Due to the fact that the "tape" that is the movie is being filmed on is taping over video from an earlier day, so when the video camera is paused and restarted bits of the original video remain.
* ForebodingFleeingFlock: As the protagonists travel through the subway, they encounter a huge swarm of rats that are all running in the opposite direction, and [[ProportionatelyPonderousParasites for good reason]].
* ForegoneConclusion: It says right at the beginning that the video was recovered in Central Park. That doesn't bode well for the characters, being still in the middle of New York.
* FoundFootageFilms: The movie's style.
* FreezeFrameBonus: The very last shot of the film, depicting one last home video, shows ''something'' falling into the ocean for a split second. WordOfGod is that this "something" is [[spoiler:a satellite, the descent of which woke Clover up in the first place]].
** It is hard to make out the fact that [[spoiler:Hud]] [[HalfTheManHeUsedToBe gets his legs bitten off]] by the monster unless the scene is watched in slow-motion.
** During moments of camera damage, stills from ''Film/KingKong1933'', ''Franchise/{{Godzilla}}'', and ''Film/{{Them}}'' are hidden amid the static.
* GenderEqualEnsemble: Three boys (Rob, Jason and Hud) and three girls (Beth, Lily and Marlena).
* GodzillaThreshold: The Hammerdown Protocol -- [[spoiler:the soldier tells the group that the government is willing to "let this whole area go" -- meaning MANHATTAN.]]
* GoryDiscretionShot: Semi-averted. You get a nice, big, gooey spatter of body parts... from behind a screen.
* GoshDarnItToHeck: Every utterance of "Oh my god!" in this movie would easily be "fuck" in a real-life situation, and the only reason it isn't is because it would've lost the movie its PG-13 rating.
* GotTheWholeWorldInMyHand: Tagruato's logo.
* GratuitousJapanese: The ARG makes continuous references to the Tagruato corporation's old name, 力の手, in kanji. Always. Yes, even in the middle of otherwise English text.
* HalfTheManHeUsedToBe: [[spoiler:Hud]], though nothing too graphic is shown.
* HelicopterFlyswatter: Near the end of the movie, the monster takes down a helicopter full of evacuees.
* HellishCopter: [[spoiler:The main characters manage to board evac choppers at the dawn of the second day of the disaster. Needless to say, Clover smacks down the one Hud is on.]]
* HeroOfAnotherStory: The commentary refers to one background character, who happens to be recording the carnage like Hud, to be a potential one. Along with her, there are many people attending the party who go their separate ways after the attack. The ARG sheds light on a few others -- there's a girl slumped over on a couch at Rob's party. It turns out she's hungover after downing a bunch of the SuperSerum that may have been involved in Clover's creation. The serum was sent to her by her boyfriend, an EcoTerrorist never seen on screen who is trying to take down Tagruato, the corporation that accidentally unleashed Clover. The ARG also followed a few of the partygoers up to the night of the party.
* HopeSpot: Twice. After rescuing Hud's best friend's love interest, and the monster appearing to die, though people know the latter's going to go wrong.
* HowWeGotHere: Not entirely. Between filming the events, we see a previous recording of Rob and Elizabeth waking up after sleeping together the previous night and going to Coney Island. As we learned later on, Rob totally ignored Elizabeth after that day and was planning to leave to Japan for his new job. The movie and the recording ends with them on a ferris wheel looking towards the ocean [[spoiler:where something has fallen into it]].
* IronicEchoCut: Twice in the same scene. Lily says she'll tell Hud and Jason why Rob and Beth are so angry at each other if Hud turns off his camera. The next cut is her telling them that Rob and Beth slept together before he decided to move, and Hud's camera is still on but hidden on the floor. Lily then makes the two of them swear not to tell. Cut to Hud telling nearly everyone at the party about it.
* ItBeganWithATwistOfFate: The film would have been very different had Rob not insisted on going to save his girlfriend. While NYC was in the middle of an [[AttackOfThe50FootWhatever attack by a giant]] EldritchAbomination.
* ItsTheOnlyWayToBeSure: The Hammerdown protocol.
* JitterCam: Entirely justified by the concept, but the film still takes more flak for this than seems reasonable. Watching it on television is fine for most viewers.
* KillEmAll: [[spoiler:Presumably averted with Lily, although the movie [[WhatHappenedToTheMouse never actually confirms this]].]]
* LudicrousGibs: The fate of those who get bitten by a parasite. Poor [[spoiler:Marlena]].
* {{Kaiju}}: Though whether it's a mutant, a reawakened prehistoric monster, or an alien is never explained.
* MadeOfIron: The ''freaking camera.'' It still isn't gone by the end, [[spoiler:surviving longer than the humans do]].
** When Clover [[spoiler:eats Hud]], the camera falls ''70 feet'', lands on the ground with a thud, '''and carries on running'''!
* MadeOfPlasticine: Humans. The monster is {{Nigh Invulnerab|ility}}le.
* MaleGaze: When Hud is filming Lily's goodbye to Rob, he instead focuses the camera on Marlena in the background.
* MatchlightDangerRevelation: As soon as the night-vision goes on, there are parasites right behind them. Justified, because they turned on the night-vision in response to hearing the parasites.
* MeaningfulBackgroundEvent: See FreezeFrameBonus and HowWeGotHere above.
* MeaningfulName: Played straight with "Hud", whose name is a play on the term "heads' up display". Averted with Cloverfield, since it's some weird military designation.
** Also, clovers are the first plants to grow back in an area after a nuclear strike, which makes a lot of sense if you tend to the theory that [[spoiler:the mysterious "HAMMERDOWN protocol" was a nuclear weapon]].
** Some sources say it's a reference to the monster leaving behind clover-shaped footprints, turning Manhattan into a "cloverfield."
%%* {{Mockumentary}}
* MonumentalDamage: The Art/StatueOfLiberty, if the commercials didn't clue you in. The Brooklyn Bridge gets smashed, too, and so does the [[spoiler:Empire State Building]]. The creature clambers over Grand Central Station in one shot, although it's unclear how much this damages the building.
* MonsterIsAMommy: Inverted. The monster's a ''baby'' looking for his mommy. [[AllThereInTheManual Not that there's even the slightest]] [[WordOfGod hint of it in the movie]].
* MoodWhiplash: Intentionally done. Hud was accidentally taping over a cutesy video of the OfficialCouple and a few times when he stops the tape, it cuts to about 30 seconds of sweetness between them.
* NewscasterCameo: [=NY1=]'s Roma Torre.
* NighInvulnerable: Clover the monster. Nothing the military throws at it seems to hurt it; bullets, tank rounds, guided missiles, even a bomb run by a B2 bomber only manages to stun it for a moment. [[spoiler:It may even have survived a Nuclear Weapon.]] WordOfGod says the creature came from the deep ocean, where [[AllThereInTheManual its strong hide protected it from the extreme water pressure.]]
* NightVisionGoggles: The camera's night vision mode during the subway sequence.
* NonMaliciousMonster: If WordOfGod is to be believed, the monster itself is not purposely trying to cause trouble -- he's just lost and wants to go home. It does intentionally eat people throughout the film, though.
** It also attacks since it's confused and frightened, it being only a lost, scared baby animal, after all. (Awww... poor thing!)
* NothingIsScarier: The times when the characters (and audience) ''know'' the monster is out there but not in sight can be very frightening and tense.
** Also applies to the movie as a whole -- nobody (including the military) knows where Clover came from, no one knows why it's here, all they know is that there's a massive, dangerous monster destroying the city and they need to get the hell out of the city before it finds ''them''.
* NotListeningToMeAreYou: A variation. Lily suspects Hud isn't even pointing the camera at her when she's saying goodbye to Rob.
* NotUsingTheZWord: No one says "Monster" or even compares Clover to any other Kaiju or monster movie through the entirety of the incident. Blame copyright.
%%* NukeEm
* OhCrap: Hud's reaction to [[spoiler:Marlena crying blood]].
** Everyone gets this when [[spoiler:the monster sneaks up on Hud and just ''stares'' at him. Then it eats him]].
** Even the very beginning gets a bit of an OhCrap from the ''audience'' when "Area formerly known as: Central Park" pops up on the screen, foreshadowing just ''how badly'' New York is about to get trashed.
* OneWomanWail: Used in "Roar!", the theme playing over the credits.
%%* OnlyAFleshWound: Beth
* PoliceAreUseless: Averted -- the NYPD and emergency services apparently respond quickly and manage to organize the evacuation of Manhattan fairly efficiently.
* PopGoesTheHuman: [[spoiler:Marlena's grisly death after being bitten by the parasite.]]
* PostNineElevenTerrorismMovie: The 9/11 imagery is all over the place during the monster's attack. At one point, a party-goer questions if an explosion that happened downtown is the work of terrorists.
* ProductPlacement: Nokia cellphone batteries become so important to one character that he loots some from an electronics store; Nokia is also the company that places ads to keep you company in those stressful desolate subway room scenes. Nokia phones are vital to the plot. Not to mention thirst-saving, parasite-blocking Mountain Dew. Also, Hud's Nikes get an extended shot at the end.
* ProportionatelyPonderousParasites: The flea-like creatures that live on Clover.
%%* PunnyName: Hud.
* PipePain: Marlena uses a broken pipe as a weapon against the parasites.
* PyrrhicVictory: The ending. [[spoiler:Thanks to the bombing, Clover is dead...but so is everyone in Manhattan.]] [[FromBadToWorse Even worse]]...[[spoiler:Clover might have survived HAMMERDOWN.]]
** Subverted on the last one. [[WordofGod J.J. Abrams confirmed that Clover is dead.]] On the other hand, [[FridgeHorror if this was only a baby...]] what's gonna happen when Mama finds out?
* RealityHasNoSoundtrack: Has no non-diegetic music, except for the end credits.
* RealityIsUnrealistic: Also, the Art/StatueOfLiberty head is, according to IMDB, about 50% larger than actual size because audiences thought the true-to-life size head in the teaser trailer looked too small.
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Despite the military lockdown on pretty much everything, one soldier not only explains everything to Rob but lets him slip out the back to find Beth.
* RuleOfPerception: In the end, the monster just shows up, practically on top of the protagonists in Central Park, yet [[SeeNoEvilHearNoEvil no indication of its approach]] is given beforehand, like the fact that the ground quakes when it walks, and it tends to clumsily destroy the surrounding environment wherever it goes. Partly justified, since they're very disoriented after surviving a helicopter crash.
** Indeed, if you pay attention to the background as they are tending to Rob, you'll notice the remains of the helicopter (in particular a rotor stuck in the ground) [[spoiler:gradually shake more and more with Clover's approach]].
* SceneryGorn: The movie thrives and thrills itself on absolutely destroying New York City.
* SequelHook: Pointed out by Abrams himself, being that during the bridge crossing you can see another individual with a camera trying to record everything. Not so much a sequel hook as a possibility for OnceMoreWithClarity. Additionally, some static after the credits that may be resolved into [[spoiler:"It's still alive!"]].
* ShockParty: Escalated UpToEleven: Rob's party turns into a monster invasion on Manhattan.
* ShootTheShaggyDog: [[spoiler:The reason everyone stayed in NYC was to help Rob save Beth. And then Beth and Rob get nuked. So much for that, then. Did I mention that everyone else is either dead or their fate is left uncertain?]]
* ShortLivedAerialEscape: Our heroes finally manage to get on an evacuation helicopter after their long ordeal. And then [[spoiler:the monster whacks it out of the sky]].
* ShoutOut: The music at the end especially, though during the blurring moments of the camera, they snuck in frames from Black and White monster movies ''Film/KingKong1933'', ''Film/{{Them}}'', and ''Film/TheBeastFromTwentyThousandFathoms''. The film itself is inspired by Franchise/{{Godzilla}} and other, similar {{B Movie}}s.
** "Roar!" is one big shout out to the work Akira Ifukube did on the ''Godzilla'' films. The extensive use of brass was a signature part of his style, and it has been said that the piece is very Godzilla-esque.
** And then there's the blink-and-you-miss-it [[Series/{{Lost}} Dharma logo]] in the very, very beginning.
** ''WesternAnimation/SpongebobSquarepants'' can be seen on a TV
* SilentCredits: For a minute or two, at least, then the above music starts up. The credits song, "Roar", has such a quiet build that it's barely audible util about a minute in.
* SinisterSubway: [[spoiler:The protagonists are attacked by the tick monsters in an abandoned subway. Prior to this, Hud mentions a story he heard about a person who would light homeless people on fire in the subway; the rest of the characters understandably tell him to shut up.]]
* SlipknotPonytail: Lily's hair gradually comes out of its bun after the monster attacks.
* SmokeShield: [[spoiler:Clover waits just long enough to give the characters false hope.]]
* SpiritualSuccessor:
** The design for Clover has been reused a lot, including the creature from ''Film/{{Super 8}}'', an alien monster from ''Film/StarTrek'' (2009 film), Devcon (a background Decepticon) from ''Film/TransformersDarkOfTheMoon'', Otachi from ''Film/PacificRim'', and the MUTO from ''Film/{{Godzilla 2014}}''. However, the last two are mainly similar for their stances, which are hunched over like Clover, and their arms, which are also similar to Clover's.
** The movie itself is considered to be one to ''Film/TheBlairWitchProject''. In fact, many critics referred to it as "''Film/TheBlairWitchProject'' for the Website/MySpace generation."
* TheStinger: [[spoiler:"Help us...", or if reversed, "It's still alive."]]
* SuperCellReception: Most people took issue with how one of the main characters could use his cell phone in the subway station. This, however, was a savvy case of TruthInTelevision, since the MTA is actively wiring subway platforms for cell service, specifically so riders can use their phones during emergencies. Indeed, after much of Manhattan had been smashed into oblivion, the subway station might be the only place where you can still get cellphone service.
* TearsOfBlood: [[spoiler:"Hud? I don't feel so good..."]]
* TogetherInDeath: [[spoiler:Rob and Beth (probably) die after professing their love for one another, in a military bombing aimed at the nearby monster.]]
%%* TooDumbToLive: Some of the characters make irrational decisions.
* TheUnreveal: You pretty much don't know any more about the monster at the end of the movie than you did at the start.
%%* WorstAid
* YourPrincessIsInAnotherCastle: [[spoiler:When they get into the helicopter and start flying away, you almost think the movie is about done.... only for a very pissed-off monster to attack the helicopter.]]