Actress Chloë Grace Moretz stars in “Shadow in the Cloud,” an action/horror film about a female World War II pilot. Warning, small spoiler talk ahead.
The film, which follows an officer named Maude Garrett, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival on Sept. 12. As part of Variety‘s Virtual TIFF studio, presented by Canada Goose, the star sat down for a virtual conversation with director/writer Roseanne Liang.
The women discussed typical hero and heroine tropes, as well as the acting process and training for fight scenes on set.
“This is a heroine that we haven’t seen before, in the sense that she is a little selfish,” Moretz said in the clip. “She makes some decisions that might not be for the greater good; it might just be for one singular good. Those types of ideals, we’ve seen with a lot of different male characters, especially in a World War II setting.”
Liang said she approached the film in a way that would realistically represent women, as opposed to what’s often been seen in Hollywood. Though Moretz’s character is imperfect, her imperfections make her a real person, as opposed to a perfectly wise and moral character.
“There’s been a lot of discussion about female empowerment movies and how there’s no flaws, there’s no mistakes,” Liang says. “And you can’t really relate to that because that’s not how we are in our world. So when you put her into this situation of adversity … I think the improvisational messiness of that is thrilling to watch and also connects with us.”
But Garrett isn’t only fighting the patriarchy in “Shadow in the Cloud,” but one very real gremlin. Stuck on a plane, in the air, she’s (and the rest of the crew) are set on a different path after a gremlin attacks. Why gremlins? “There’s a historic relevance to gremlins, they started in the World War,” Liang explained. “Why Gremlins for Garrett, it’s a metaphor.”
But Liang and Moretz are both hesitant to say anything more until you watch her historical thriller.