"Reel Reviews: ‘Shadow in the Cloud’ feeds off of WWII airmen superstitions" by: Jessica Shepard

   It’s slim pickings at the theater again and I did a little research on the movies offered locally and settled on “Shadow in the Cloud.”
   Now, the storyline is pretty weak and seems entirely too weak to matter, but, I’m here for any flick with a monster based in military superstition.
   Though, I’ll also admit that my knowledge of “gremlins” depends largely on a series of the same name and an antique Looney Tunes cartoon.
   Outside of that, it’s just a quick Google search and I’m gotten a grasp on the history of gremlins that started in the 1920s during World War I and were reoccurring in WWII. 
   Gremlins are basically known as mischievous and destructive creatures that sabotage aircraft.
   Shadow in the Cloud is a fantasy adventure action film directed by Roseanne Liang, from a screenplay by Liang and Max Landis. 
   It stars Chloë Grace Moretz, Taylor John Smith, Nick Robinson, Beulah Koale, Benedict Wall, and Callan Mulvey. 
   The film is rated R for language throughout, sexual references and violence and is 83 minutes long.
   In August 1943, female Flight Officer Maude Garrett (Moretz) is assigned to travel with top secret documents from New Zealand to Samoa. 
   However, as soon as she arrives at the air base, she witnesses a ground crew baggage handler inexplicably disappearing before her eyes just before she suddenly finds herself standing right in front of her transport, a B-17 bomber christened, “The Fool’s Errand.” 
   The bomber’s crew gives her a mostly derisive welcome, and she is quartered in the “Sperry” for the takeoff. 
   The Sperry is basically the gun turret on the underside of the bomber and definitely not a great place if you’ve got motion sickness.
   With no room left for her document bag, she reluctantly allows the only crew member friendly to her, Walter Quaid (Smith), to store it.
   While stuck in the turret, Maude suddenly sees some sort of creature clinging to the underside of the bomber’s wing; she reports it, but most of the crew - except Beckell (Robinson), who sights it too - dismisses it. 
   When she is allowed to exit the turret, the hatch malfunctions and leaves her trapped inside; which naturally makes her worry.
   When she reacts indignant about the crew’s comments to her situation, they abandon their attempts to open the hatch and the crew switches communications channels to speak without Maude listening. 
   After seeing a Japanese scouting plane appearing and disappearing close to the bomber, she is abruptly attacked by the creature, a gremlin.
   Maude fights it off and shoots it in self-defense even though it violates rules about having a non-issued weapon aboard a plane.
   When the crew contacts her again to ask about what happened, a radio message comes in telling them that a Maude Garrett doesn’t exist and is not registered for the flight. 
   When they intend to take her out for questioning, Maude deliberately jams the turret’s gears and prepares to defend herself when the Japanese plane reappears and attacks. 
   After that, the action really picks up and it’s a race to safety between the gremlin and Japanese attacking.
   It’s definitely a better watch on the big screen than waiting for a rental or streaming at home. 

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