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Shadow in the Cloud – An Excellent Creature Feature That is Lots of Fun

January 6, 2021
Poster courtesy of Vertical Entertainment

Shadow in the Cloud is a fun low-budget throwback creature feature that hopefully will build a large cult following. 

Directed by Roseanne Liang, and starring Chloë Grace Moretz, Shadow in the Cloud draws from Gremlin-lore during World War II to tell a story about a Flight Officer named Maude Garrett (Grace Moretz) having an incredibly rough ride inside a B-17 bomber named “The Fool’s Errand.” Not only does she have to transport a mysterious package, but she has to deal with a hostile male crew, and a murderous gremlin hell-bent on taking down the bomber that is also being attacked by Japanese planes (it’s a lot). 

The 83-minute film (including an opening cartoon and the closing credits) flies by quickly, and features some truly memorable visuals, and gives us a badass new action hero who front kicks a gremlin into oblivion. Grace Moretz is excellent as Maude Garrett, an flight officer who flies non-armed transport planes across the pacific during the war. Her nightmarish experiences aboard the “The Fool’s Errand” are handled well, and contrary to what the action-packed movie trailer suggests, the first 30 minutes of the movie feature her wedged in a gun turret. This isn’t an issue, as Grace Moretz, puts the film on her shoulders (which are cramped inside the tiny gun turret), and gives an excellent performance that is equal parts badass and paranoid. 

To give away more would be a disservice. Just know that there’s a moment in which Maude falls out of the bomber, and is blasted back inside by an exploding Japanese fighter plane (it’s wonderful). Grace Moretz has been kicking the crap out of people ever since 2010, when her Hit-Girl character In Kick-Ass shocked the world, Since then, after solid performances in Let Me In and Carrie, she’s emerged as a badass action hero who looks comfortable hanging on the outside of an airplane, AND kicking gremlins in their faces. Her final brawl with the gremlin is a thing of beauty as she unleashes a brutal barrage on the jerky creature who quickly realizes it messed with the wrong person. 

photo courtesy of Vertical Entertainment

It’s a shame that writer Max Landis has his name attached, as the allegations against him hurt the credibility of the film. However, it helps knowing that Liang rewrote the majority of the script, and the production distanced themselves from the oft-accused writer/director. Also, the IMDb scores and the Audience Score section of Rotten Tomatoes showcase a dispiriting amount of people complaining about the “man-hating” that is supposedly featured in the movie. These complaints are dumb, and not worthy of your time. Why? Shadow in the Cloud is a rollicking film that wants to tell a thrilling story. It doesn’t have an “anti-men” agenda, it has a “badass soldier fighting a gremlin” agenda.

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