Director Gareth Edwards brings to life one of the most famous monsters of all-time, Godzilla to life. Warner Bros. partners with Toho, the movie studio that first featured the kaiju creature Gojira (as he’s known in Japan).
Monarch scientist Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston) is reeling from the death of his wife Sandra Brody (Juliette Binoche) after a mysterious tremor set off a nuclear reactor that caused her death. He contacts his son Ford (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) after he is arrested for trespassing. Ford arrives in time to witness the arrival of a MUTO (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism)., a gigantic winged insect creature who destroys the base. Monarch scientist Ishiro Serizawa (Ken Watanabe) who reveals Monarch was created after the appearance of the gigantic lizard creature called Godzilla.
As the MUTO awakens its mate, Ford warns his wife Elle Brody (Elizabeth Olsen) that the creature is headed to their home in San Francisco. Despite the military’s best efforts, they cannot stop the MUTO’s rampage across the United States. However, Godzilla arrives and challenges these creatures in a deadly battle that could destroy the Earth.
This version of Godzilla is far superior to the 90s version starring Matthew Broderick. This one keeps much of the original mythology behind the legendary monster while adding a modern twist to the themes and plot.
As for the aesthetics, it is well shot, well scored, and the performances are very well done. Johnson, Olsen, Watanabe, and especially Bryan Cranston are all excellent in their roles. The special effects are incredible and they do a good a job of highlighting the power of these enormous creatures make it seem so powerful.
I did have a few problems with the film. One, it takes forever to reveal Godzilla in his fullness. While he is teased throughout the first act, he really does not make an appearance in epic fullness until the second act of the movie. This did make it a bit distracting in a movie that is named after the monster. Two, as the MUTOs approach San Fran, Johnson’s character begs his wife to stay in the city despite the monsters matching on. Lastly, as a husband, I would’ve sent my wife as far away as possible. It was a bit weird. Also, I’m not a physicist, but I feel the nuclear science is this film is a bit incorrect.
Bottom line, Edwards crafts an excellent Godzilla story that pays tribute to old stories while also bringing the kaiju into the modern world with its politics and reaction.
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Violence, Foul language
FAVORITE QUOTE: Let them fight.
Check out the trailer below:
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This article has been updated from a previous version.