The first Godzilla film came out in 1954, it was considered a cinematic response to the atrocities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Godzilla embodies the sheer destructive might that Nuclear power was capable of bringing down on civilization as a whole. Since it’s creation, our lovable 328 foot tall(originally 164) defender has taken on a life of it’s own with a series of movie’s, tv shows, video games, and comic books. Godzilla is a Nuclear fueled tornado of destruction consuming all in it’s path, but on occasion this “King of the Monsters” becomes humanities only hope to surviving an even greater threat. Over the years this master of mayhem has faced many opponents, as of the May 2014’s release of Godzilla; this pop culture icon has reached it’s 29th film which we are lucky enough to have grace our movie screens, and also our hearts. Godzilla has faced monsters the likes of Mothra, Aliens, even a mechanized version of himself, but nothing could stop this titan among lizards.
Now there is something funky going on with the film numbering here, see originally the Toho corporation who brought about the franchise have created 28 Godzilla films. TriStar Pictures created a 29th Godzilla film in 1998, well maybe not quite made as they attempted the feat, instead creating what would appear to be a flick about a dinosaur running around New York. Toho has Dubbed the 1998 rein-visioning of Godzilla as “Zilla” for they believed the film took the “God” from “Godzilla” as a fan of the franchise I wholeheartedly agree that there was something major missing from the film. All the same if you’re in the market for a 90’s film about a dinosaur running around New York with cool special effects it really wasn’t a bad movie for what it was; plus it did have Matthew Broderick(Ferris Bueler) and Jean Reno(The Proffesional) in it.
The 2014 version of Godzilla was developed by Legendary Pictures who also reinvented Godzilla, but to a much lesser degree then it’s 1998 counterpart, viewers generally believe Godzilla could go on a diet. The weight of our hero may be my only critique of the movie, as it doesn’t seem like a big deal when you’re watching the trailers; the movie runs for 2 hours 5 minutes, and his weight does become a little distracting by the end. Not to mention our ancient dinosaur defenders doesn’t seem as spry as he once did, he won’t be dropkicking monsters any time soon anyway. Notable actors include Bryan Cranston(Breaking Bad), Bryan Cranston(Malcom in the Middle), oh yeah and Bryan F***ing Cranston. Important things to realize going in to the movie, Bryan Cranston really only exists to introduce us to the story which when established leads us to viewing most of the film through his sons perspective. Godzilla holds a minor role in this movie compared to our (human) hero Ford Brody played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson(Kick-Ass) who hogs the screen with Gojira’s opponents who later join him for the mandatory monster wrestling match that these movies are all about. A rumor keeps going around that the movie is shot like Cloverfield, the only similarity is that it’s shot from ground level, and some helicopters. There is no shaky cam or anyone running around with a camera the whole time, we just have a lower perspective for this one which ultimately makes the monster fights look pretty cool.
If you aren’t a huge fan of the series(yet), and just want to know if you’ll enjoy the movie, it boils down to being your basic giant monster wreaking havoc type of movie. Godzilla falls into the same stitch as Hulk, Ghost Busters, or Pacific Rim. There’s a basic theme to every Godzilla movie; take some monsters, make them fight each-other, add a plotline with some human protagonists because we can’t watch dinosaurs fighting the whole movie(apparently) and you have the basic structure of every godzilla movie ever.
Ultimately as someone who has been watching these movies his whole life, and ran out to buy Blue Oyster Cult on Vinyl to prepare for this movie, i thoroughly enjoyed it. Godzilla 2014 far and away exceeded my best expectation, although my standards were pretty low after the 1998 fiasco. Still I’d give it a 9/10.
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I’m DJ Good Deal and when I’m not watching movies or studying you can find me on KSSU doing my best to provide the masses with an eclectic listening experience with my show Zombie Patrol. UTC -8 (don’t worry there aren’t any Zombies, I hope).