Sunday, January 20, 2008

I Saw Cloverfield

Yes I did.

Being a New Yorker who lived through 9/11, I had very mixed feelings about going to see a movie in which a monster takes down our city. I'd seen that one before. But Marco, a lover of monster movies and a dude who goes with me to chick flicks, pleaded. And so I went.

Interesting discussed ensued on the way subway ride home. Marco reminded me that Godzilla came out in Japan 10 years after the bombing of Hiroshima. Does Cloverfield perform some kind of cultural work that has to do with the processing of the unimaginable in the American imagination? Is this movie, which puts the takedown of Manhattan back into the realm of horror fantasy, a wish for an earlier day, when such monstrous things only happened on the silver screen? Many are arguing, and I understand the point, that the movie is merely exploiting America's trauma for dollars. But the cultural studies girl in me wonders if, in addition, there is something deeper going on.