Directed by Gareth Edwards. Starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Ken Watanabe, Elizabeth Olsen and Bryan Cranston.
Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich re-imagined the legendary Japanese monster as a female creature attacking New York City to nest its young. Based on the trailers, it did seem that Edwards’ Godzilla might follow that same path. But thankfully, Edwards movie takes a totally different tack and by the end, Godzilla is considered the “King of the Monsters” and a “saviour” of sorts.
Whilst one might reasonably quibble with the plot and the human characterizations, there’s no denying that Edwards creates a visual feast that is best viewed on IMAX 3D. Given a strong human POV (rather like Cloverfield in parts), there is an widescreen epic vibe that permeates most of the incredible action sequences. The creature designs look credible and fantastical at the same time and the set pieces are particularly immersive especially as we follow explosive ordinance disposal technician Ford Brody (Taylor-Johnson) in his quest to rejoin his family and survive amidst the chaos.
As expected, we don’t learn too much about the human cast – our leads invariably look lost viz Ford Brody seems clueless most of the time and scientist Ichiro Serizawa (Watanabe) bases his decisions on gut feelings – the rest of the cast are cyphers (notably Elizabeth Olsen as Brody’s wife) and we get the usual stereotypical military characters but it’s a monster movie so what did you expect? Shakespeare? Well, compared to Del Toro’s risible Pacific Rim, Godzilla may well be!
Go and watch Godzilla for the breath-taking cinematography – Gareth Edwards is a director to keep an eye on – expect him to be helming the next big scifi blockbuster very soon.
Godzilla is in the cinemas now.