Godzilla is the benevolent and loveable ancient lizard superhero we all deserve.
|Aaron Taylor Johnson as Lt. Ford Brody|
|Juliette Binoche and Bryan Cranston as Sandra and Joe Brody|
|Elizabeth Olsen as Elle Brody|
|Ken Watanabe as Dr. Ichiro Serizawa|
|with Godzilla as himself|
Man, it took a LONG TIME for the hurt of the 1998 Godzilla to be washed away. The series has finally been redeemed with this reboot, also quite originally named Godzilla, featuring the titular giant monster at its best. His laser beam mouth for example, is back in action, and it’s frickin’ AWESOME.
We begin with the backstory, set in 1999 when a mining company finds a massive cave underneath their open cut mine. Inside the cave is the fossil of an enormous animal, bigger than anything anyone has ever seen. Except there’s also an egg inside, still alive, while another one has escaped from the cave and disappeared. We then cut to Japan where Joe and Sarah Brody work in a nuclear power plant, with their young son, Ford going to school nearby. On his father’s birthday, a massive disaster occurs at the nuclear powerplant, killing his mother and making his father go bonkers, becoming obsessed with finding out what happened at the plant.
We fast forward to fifteen years later, when the surviving Brodys begin to investigate their old home and why there’s a biohazard exclusion zone despite the absence of any level of radiation. I’ll spoil it here (also, there are official Youtube clips of this), that Godzilla isn’t the only monster lurking around. The investigation leads to the massive amount of action and destruction in the movie. If you saw Cloverfield and managed not to regurgitate your last meal, it’s a pretty similar level of destruction wreaked by the massive creatures.
As a movie, it is a standard loud action movie, with explosions galore, soldiers and ominous warnings from the only smart or knowledgeable guy in the cast. It is, as you can imagine, an aural and visual extravaganza. The visual effects are fantastic and it no longer looks like Godzilla is a man in a rubber suit. Godzilla’s new roar is just awe inspiring, a mix of massive dinosaur and dragon. Whoever designed that sound effect should win the Oscar for “Best Noise of the Year”. If they don’t have that category yet, they should make one!
However, I do have to pick some faults with the movie. First of all, the script for the actors is as underwhelming as a McDonald’s cheeseburger. It’s flat, a bit limp and it’s not as big as you imagined. Throughout it, you’ll wonder what Ford is supposed to do, because his role is literally only to disarm a bomb. He’s pretty much useless everywhere else, despite being a trained soldier. The rest of the cast suffers from similar role issues, especially Ford’s wife, who literally does nothing. Having said that, if the goal of the movie was to have the monsters as the main stars, then they succeeded quite spectacularly.
The whole movie showcases the awesome power of nature and the impotence of modern human weaponry, since using nuclear bombs and missiles against Godzilla and the other monsters is like throwing tennis balls against the Hoover Dam. The monster designs are fantastic, especially the two “bad ones”, which look like a cross between some sort of giant, mutant hawk and a bat. However, they’re not actually bad guys, merely motivated by animal instinct rather than some sort of malevolent evil.
Thankfully, the movie is still massively fun to watch, because Godzilla has far more personality and charisma than all the human characters combined. It just feels like the cast is there to fill up some space where the CGI magic budget just wasn’t enough. Thankfully the monsters pick up where the humans are deficient: personality, motivation and even levels of kick arse that the United States military should have been able to muster. All in all, it’s a great action movie. Just sit back and enjoy your popcorn.
Check out the trailer
A return to form for monster action, destroy movies. This Godzilla is definitely worth the watch.
Should I watch this?
Yes. Hearing Godzilla’s new roar is worth the price of admission. I think someone needs to make a ringtone out of it.