Quick Take: Godzilla

I liked it just fine, although I suspect that I go against the grain of most people in thinking the parts with the humans were reasonably well done, and the parts with Godzilla were mostly an unwieldy reptile banging into things. As recent movies with kaiju go, I’d place it third, below Pacific Rim and Cloverfield, but I really like both of those films (for somewhat different reasons), so the bronze here is not a mark of shame.

And yes, this film is rather better than the 1998 Godzilla film, although I think that film has come in for rather a bit of revisionist history, to wit, that it was some sort of flop. It wasn’t; it made $136 million domestically ($230 million in today’s dollars) and twice that worldwide. Audiences liked it just fine, until they decided they didn’t. In retrospect, Roland Emmerich’s “kind of jokey, kind of dopey” action film approach wasn’t the ticket, which is some irony for a creature that got its start as a dude in a rubber suit, stomping on a clearly cardboard Tokyo. Nevertheless, director Gareth Edwards stealing a page from Christopher Nolan for the “gritty and realistic” approach works pretty well here, or at the very least keeps you from stopping to think about the physical impossibility of it all while you’re watching. I was entertained, and if you like monster movies, I expect you will be too.

Aside from the film itself, what I really want to say is that I’m really happy with how the film did its trailers and other promotional material. It went counter to today’s usual “tell the whole story of the film in two minutes” trailer philosophy, which I hate, and instead evoked what you were going to get in the film without giving away major plot points. Looking at the trailers now, in fact, proves that what’s in the trailers is not quite what’s in the finished film — and that’s a good thing. I don’t want trailers to be a two-minute recap. I want trailers to make me think “wow, I should see that film.”

And in fact that’s what happened here. I wasn’t sold on the idea of a new Godzilla film, and the trailers persuaded me otherwise. And they weren’t wrong. Well done, Godzilla.

60 thoughts on “Quick Take: Godzilla

  1. People who have seen the film and want to talk about it here may do so. That being the case, I’m going to put up a spoiler alert: As in, if you read the comment thread you may have the movie details spoiled for you.

  2. This is a more general comment about trailers. I realize the should make me think “Wow, I have to see that movie.” Unfortunately, they are more likely to think “Skip that one.” So I don’t see many movies any more.

  3. My thoughts are along similar tracks, although the more I think about it, the more I’m annoyed at the two parts: the beginning, with Cranston, and the end, with his son. They were almost like two separate films and stories running alongside one another.

    On another thought, I do miss your film commentary from that column a while back. I hope you do this more often!

  4. Personally, I enjoyed the monster parts more, but that’s pretty subjective (and as a kid who grew up with Sunday morning “Creature Features” every week – unwieldy reptile banging into things is enough to please me). I was worried when the monster scenes would literally be in the background for the entire movie – which can make a very good monster movie (e.g. Cloverfield) but a very poor Godzilla movie. Thankfully, the final portion made up for it to me.

    As for trailers – I’m all for trailers being banned from showing anything from the last third of a movie as a matter of international law. The two minute recap is horrible. Even without that, it’s hard not to subconsciously play “When will that shot appear?” while watching a movie with a trailer I have seen a few times. That sort of expectation can easily remove me from the story. It’s getting to the point where the more excited I am for a movie, the more I try to avoid seeing any trailers for it at all.

  5. I’m not necessarily a fan of films like this (I did love Cloverfield) but I really liked this film. It was fun to watch. My only issue was with Ken Wantanabe, an actor I really like. The entire movie he just stared off into the distance, scowled and barely talked. Maybe it’s just me – and I get all of the angst and inner terror stuff – but it bugged me.

  6. I pretty much agree with you (haven’t seen Cloverfield), and I liked Pacific Rim much better. I thought Godzilla was well done, but I enjoyed the Matthew Broderick film quite a bit, which in many ways was more fun than this version, which was totally lacking in humor. I thought the first part, involving familial death scenes, was affecting, albeit a bit grim for the probable audience. If I thought Pacific Rim was dumb (and it was, but fun), then this was even dumber because it holds up logically even less so. I mean, you’ve got all these tricking Navy vessels presumably with nuclear missiles on them, can’t you just launch one to wherever you want it to go? Instead, you have to watch 3 or 4 guys lug a warhead around San Francisco (lightweight warhead, I thought), etc. I thought I got my $7 bucks worth, but I’m not overwhelmed. My wife liked it better than I did.

  7. Aside from the terrible terrible science, it was pretty entertaining. Though I definitely preferred Pacific Rim for the Large Monster Fight Scenes.

    But man, the terrible science. a

  8. I have to disagree about Cloverfield. I got about 20 minutes in and couldn’t stand it anymore. Had no sympathy for the characters and I guess I one of those people that doesn’t like the “shakey cam” style. I kept wanting more monster stuff and was bogged down with the rest. And by the time the statue’s head rolled down the street, I was too bored and frustrated to continue.

    Also, I think you mean “Go, go, Godzilla.” Or maybe that’s just me.

  9. Haven’t seen this yet, but I am looking forward to it. It is good to hear some positive comments about it. I am so skeptical of movies these days that some part of me almost dreads going and seeing one, and thereby confirming my suspicion that it sucks. Or, nearly as bad, is merely rendered mediocre due to cliche, formulaic story telling tactics that mainstream movie makers just can’t seem to do without.

    Now let me turn around and say, I liked the 1998 Godzilla just fine. I thought it was by far the best Godzilla movie to date. Not a complete surprise considering technological advances and the resources expended.

  10. I took my 12 year old neighbor and a friend with his 10 year old son and we made it a “boys’ night out” and it was perfect. Although I too place it below Pacific Rim (Giant Monsters and Giant Robots battling it out – how can you do any better?) we enjoyed it completely. It was Rocky with monsters and at the end when Big G was getting hammered pretty good and he finally brought out the Atomic Bad Breath the entire audience cheered wildly.

  11. Hilariously terrible script, unfortunately. Some great monster action brought down by low human stakes and incredibly clunky storytelling on every level.

  12. I did enjoy Broderick’s Godzilla, but I don’t think it should have been “Godzilla”. They ought to have called it something else because that creature was *NOT* Godzilla.

    I watched a lot of old Godzilla movies as a kid so while the ’98 movie disappointed me in a lot of ways, this one definitely did not. I got my childhood Godzilla, all polished up and CGI-tastic. The story wasn’t quite as terrible as I had heard but even still, any and every scene with our favorite Tokyo-stomper was what provided the most enjoyment and entertainment for me. Sure, there was a lot of corny but that *IS* Godzilla, you’ve got to take the corny with the OMGSOAWESOME!

    I’m not at all ashamed to say that I laughed with sheer delight at some parts. First glimpse of him swimming and diving beneath the ship, his glowing tail/spines… radioactive fire-breath… “Eat this, bitch!” *ahem* Yeah… loved it all. I felt like a kid again for a little while. :o)

  13. I feel like the HALO jump scene is one of the most visually impressive few minutes of cinema I’ve seen in a long time. It was executed so well I just wanted to watch those three or four minutes over and over again.

  14. A great Godzilla reboot idea would be to make a movie about some schlocky hacks making an old style guy-in-a-rubber-suit Godzilla flick, when some random nuclear thing happens to the guy in the rubber suit and he grows to the ginormous size and starts freaking out, accidentally wrecking whatever city he’s in. THAT would be a fun movie with a Godzilla that looked like the old cheesy Godzilla we’ve come to know and love.

  15. Have to agree with everything here, especially JS and paigevest. I must admit one thing: while I did see it in Imax and recommend it to everyone, I also used earplugs. *turning red here* I do know the sound effects were great because they reverberated off my cheeks, though.

  16. John, I’m curious: What did you like about Pacific Rim? I looked through the archives, but didn’t find anything on it. lol, Makes me wish you still had your movie review column!

  17. I enjoyed Godzilla (as did my 9 year old son), but would have preferred more monster on monster fighting. I didn’t care about the main couple and saw their efforts to survive as a hindrance to viewing the monster battles.

  18. “ …would have preferred more monster on monster fighting …”

    Curious. I’ve heard that frequently, even as lights went up in the theater (yes, took my earplugs off by then). And maybe they could have had more ground-shaking while we had moments with the humans, to imagine the fights? This reminds me of something from the movie Main Street, where the actress has refused to appear nude and the director decides to have her ‘nude’ off-screen but with the main actor ogling at what he ‘sees’. It’s the idea that sometimes imagining is better than the seeing … and possibly that’s what is being considered here, but perhaps too much?

  19. I saw Godzilla Sunday. It was good overall, but I thought some of the subplots could have either been done better or eliminated completely, particulaly the kid with him on the airport tram.

    I thought the Monster fight was decent, but for being such a huge part of the movie I was dissappointed they didn’t make it better. As a told a friend last night, they made it good, but with a little more effort it could’ve been badass.

    That being said, I did think that was the best finishing move evar.

    All the best,
    Paul

  20. Sorry, Scalzi – I hated the 1998 GODZILLA before it was fashionable! It insulted my intelligence, Matthew Broderick was a miserable choice for a hero, Jean Reno was great but wasted – and most importantly of all, That’s Not Godzilla! That’s some jibroni that attacked New York City….

  21. I agree that they were impressive trailers, and if I were interested in seeing monster movies, the trailers would have drawn me to this one. It’s not their fault I’m not interested in seeing monster movies.

    I further agree in disliking the “tell the story of the movie in 2 minutes” approach. The remake of “The Italian Job” was a particularly outstanding example of the common result, which is that the trailer is really the whole movie, and the rest of the running time feels like filler.

  22. Why wasn’t San Francisco highly radioactive? 25 minutes on a boat going no more than 10 knots puts you not very far out to sea, possibly using Marin as a partial shield. And can any helicopter fly fast enough to get out of range of a nuke in 5 minutes?

  23. I did like the new Godzilla notwithstanding some of its issues (e.g. the not-very-far-offshore bomb Francis just mentioned). Also agree re: the trailer not ruining the film.

    Speaking of which: There was a trailer for the new Transformers before Godzilla and boy, it just drove home the point that everything Gareth Edwards got right Michael Bay is going to get wrong.

  24. It was more that they focused on the wrong human stories. We got tons of Sergeant Boring and his paint-by-numbers quest to get back to his family, but not as much Cranston and Watanabe. Seriously, Cranston is amazing when he chooses to ham it up – he should have been in the entire movie, not just the first half.

  25. I like a monster movie that remembers I am there to see the monsters be huge and wreck things before all else. A major reason I disliked the 1998 version was because they kept insisting I give a shit about not-monsters-being-huge-and-wrecking-things. And they didn’t have a good enough script or acting to make that ok.
    I also felt like Pacific Rim was enough not about the monsters for me to have to be irritated by some of the poor acting and idiot script moments. Godzilla was enough not at all about the people in it to get away with it because they delivered pretty badass monster moments. When they had people carrying the plot it worked, because Walter White.

    My major beef was the very end, because it could have been so much less stupid with one not-that-major plot change.
    “Just ignore that nuke that went off way too close for it not to be a huge problem in spite of the amazingly improbable speed of that Coast Guard boat. Surely that won’t have a major affect on these characters’ futures.
    It’s really too bad we didn’t have the only dude on the nuke team who could disable it right freaking there with five times the time he said he needed to disable it right beforehand…”
    Sure it made minimal sense for Army Guy to be the only bomb disabling expert on hand – you’d sort of think they’d overstock on guys who knew this kind of stuff just in case. But it made even less sense than that to have him make it to the nuke with enough time to stop it and then trigger a series of the least believable moments in the whole movie by *not* having him stop it.

  26. I don’t want trailers to be a two-minute recap. I want trailers to make me think “wow, I should see that film.”

    Quite. A trailer should be a menu, not the whole recipe.

  27. With this movie, I think we’ve now established a new trope: Dark Knight Rises Syndrome, where a nuclear bomb going off just off the coast of a major city is a happy ending.

    In general, I liked it. The human parts didn’t bug me, though I agree Watanabe could have been given more to do. I also don’t mind that they killed off Bryan Cranston’s character early on. As much as I love watching Cranston be hammy and hysterical, I don’t think I could have handled two hours of it.

    I also managed to avoid most trailers and spoilers, so I didn’t know there was going to be multiple monsters until I saw the spindly leg crawling from its cocoon and thought, “hey, that’s not Godzilla! OMG they’re going to have Godzilla fighting another monster goody goody yay!

    Basically, this movie managed to bypass my extremely robust and cynical intellectualizing defenses and let me enjoy a squishy emotional ride.

  28. It wasn’t bad, I enjoyed it okay but IMO it didn’t measure up to past Godzilla movies. I’ve seen them all (except the 1998 movie, that version of Godzilla is known as GINO-Godzilla in name only- by many Godzilla fans) and while they are very campy and yes, that is a guy in a rubber suit, I just like the Toho movies better.

    All that aside, it was a good monster movie and fun but just an okay Godzilla movie.

  29. Say, did we really see the nuke go off at the end? Maybe Kick-Ass disarmed the bomb while we were looking at Godzilla fighting? Like the rest of the movie we looked at soldiers doing boring stuff while Godzilla did awesome stuff offscreen.

  30. Saw the trailer at a recent film, I went from “no interest whatsoever” to “next on must see list”. Yes, well done by studio. Nice to hear the movie may be well done as well.

  31. I hated the 1998 Godzilla; within the first 20 minutes in fact. My friends and I were giving it the Mystery Science Theater 3000 treatment by the 45 minute mark. Matthew Broderick phoned in his part, and his love interest was the worst actress I’ve ever seen. I think a eighth grader performing in her first play would have given better line readings than she did. Just an awful, awful movie.

  32. John, I don’t think anyone has ever represented the 1998 film as a financial failure, thought I may be wrong. I’ve only ever heard it described by others and myself as a failure to be a Godzilla movie. It wasn’t a bad movie, though it had a lot of faults. It’s problem was that it wasn’t a movie about Godzilla, at least as I grew up knowing him. I enjoyed seeing him get killed by the real Godzilla in Godzilla: Final Wars. :)

    I thought this Godzilla was an excellent movie. I enjoy Pacific Rim more, it’s true…but this was a great film and unlike PR, it doesn’t exhaust you with fight sequences. I do get a chuckle out of people saying how a film about a walking metaphor for nuclear holocaust isn’t fun (though it’s not an unreasonable thing to say).

  33. I liked it. It went by quicker than Pacific Rim, and at least not all the monster fights were at night during rainstorms. If they’d had one line “Kaiju are underwater creatures, they can only attack when it’s raining!” it would’ve been better than me thinking “Jurassic Park was 20 years ago! They had an excuse for their primitive CGI!”

    Cloverfield was okay in the “escaping the giant rampage” sense, except that the characters didn’t do that. They just kept running back into danger so frequently that they just seemed really, really stupid. I expected someone to yell “But we HAVE to go back to certain doom! I dropped my phone! Dudes, all my STUFF is on there!” Everyone else: “Okay.” “Great! But first, let’s make a detour under it’s feet. I left my latte there.” “Okay.”

    Yeah, that final explosion. 20 miles doesn’t seem very far when we’re already told that the blast will be much larger than the H-bomb tests of the 50s. I was expecting that a news report would say something about “Strangely, there is no radioactive fallout!” Because it was all absorbed by…Hey, look who just woke up! Looking all refreshed after a healthy breakfast. Maybe it was assumed that’s what you’d figure out on your own.

  34. Francis – I was wondering, also: given what’s just happened in Honolulu, and given that these things are clearly travelling East, why has nobody given an order to evacuate the entire west coast?

  35. I was a big fan of CLOVERFIELD, less so PACIFIC RIM, and I loved GODZILLA. The awesome thing to me was the few moments of genuine beauty in the movie; someone has already referenced the HELO jump, which is probably my favorite moment in the whole movie, but there are also the shots with the flares and the pan over the crowded highways to the crashed jet. Gorgeous.

    More thoughts here: http://infinitefreetime.com/2014/05/18/godzilla-review-among-other-things/

  36. At the end where everyone is watching Godzilla leave on the stadium bigscreen and the ‘news’ has it titled something like “Godzilla is King of the Monsters – Savior of Our City?”, did anyone else read that and hope he went out of his way to trample just one more skyscraper on the way past?

  37. Ryan H, how many skyscrapers would you trample with Godzilla’s hangover? I’d be “MAN. Have my footsteps always been so loud?!”

  38. I’ll be honest. I loved, loved, loved Godzilla. And I really thought it was a lot better than Pacific Rim and Cloverfield. The thing that Godzilla did better than Pacific Rim were the fights. Every time I saw a kaiju fighting a robot in Pacific Rim, the fight was somehow obscured through rain, water, clouds, fog, etc. And Cloverfield, never really allowed us to fully see the monster. Not so with Godzilla.

    Finally: ***spoiler alert***

    When Godzilla lit-up his enemies with his radioactive breath, audience members where cheering (including myself).

  39. I don’t expect to see this. When people tell me about a movie they have seen, and rave about how wonderful the special effects were, it pretty much says the story was not worth remembering it if was there at all. That happened a few times with this one. One young man went to far as to say “The acting was really poor, but the effects saved the movie.”

  40. [blink]

    If you walk into a movie theater showing a movie called Godziila expecting to see nuanced, deeply sophisticated acting from the human performers, you are probably either (a) from an alternate Earth wherein “Godzilla” is the title character in a play by distinguished Japanese playwright Miyamoto Musashi*, or (b) harboring unrealistic expectations of a high-budget monster movie.

    *Yes, that would be a very strange alternate Earth….

  41. I hope you won’t mind if I copypasta my own comments from another site:

    The movie lost me right around the Honolulu attack and never got me back. At that point, it was the tediously, ridiculously slow reveal of Godzilla that did it.

    After that it was a host of issues: the incompetency of the military; the cartoonish news reports; the inconsistent passage of time; the Yucca Mountain facility isn’t in the mountain, it’s several thousand feet beneath it.

    Early in the film, I was fine with the callbacks to the old Japanese monster flicks as homage. But as the film progressed, it becae clear that it just couldn’t keep a straight face. I mean, MUTOs? Fucking really? Of all of Las Vegas, a MUTO smashes the Strip, because of course it does. 1:45 into the movie, Godzilla’s fins(?) start to glow, from the tail up, as if to say “IMMA CHARGIN MAH LAZARZ!!” (shoop da woop) No one notices the giant monster sneaking up behind them? Ken Watanabe just looks drunk, or defeated, the whole movie, like he can’t believe Bryan is already home, enjoying the new boat, while he’s there, offering nothing useful to the story.

    I’m not getting any sense that global warming/climate change ever once crossed anyone’s mind making this. (Yes, I know Gareth Edwards claims it is about climate change, but either he sucks at metaphor, or he’s full of shit.) It’s pretty boilerplate “Nuke are bad, m’kay” stuff. The prehistoric monsters used to live off background radiation, now humans are concentrating radiation enough to reawaken the monsters. A deep water nuclear sub woke up Godzilla. Trying to nuke it to death just made him stronger, I guess, but more nukes now will totally work because reasons, I guess.

    You’re right, Godzilla is a creature that doesn’t appear to exist for any reason. They call it a predator, but predators prey in order to eat. Godzilla “eats” radiation, so why does it need to hunt? Does the existence of the MUTO’s just offend it’s sensibilities?

    I can’t say I’m disappointed because I went in with no expectations of it being any good. (Well, I’m a little disappointed that Bryan Cranston didn’t last longer, being how he was the only character with anything interesting to say.) But this is not good. It’s pretty. The HALO drop sequence in particular was a standout. But it’s technically inconsistent. Too much dark, too much dust, very odd sound design where buildings fall with a whisper.

  42. Final note: I’ll put it the same “Meh” level as Cloverfield. And I will say it’s better than Pacific Rim. But Pacific Rim is the second most Inexcusably Stupid Movie From a Filmmaker Who Should Really Know Better that I’ve seen in the last few years. (Prometheus is the hands down winner in that category.)

  43. I liked this new “Godzilla” a lot. There are a couple of reasons for that. First of all, I liked that not all of the focus characters were young and hip and beautiful. Probably a function of my age, mostly. I also liked that it reminded me of all those Saturday afternoons I spent with my dad in front of the TV watching all those old Godzilla movies that they used to show on the local L.A. stations when I was a kid.

    Yeah, the science was pretty bad (and I’m including the lack of fallout – literally and figuratively – from the bomb on the boat in this). And, yeah, they killed off Bryan Cranston’s character way, way too early. But, still, it was an enjoyable couple of hours in the theatre.

  44. I think the film could have been brilliant with Cranston and Watanabe.playing off each other and arguing about what to about Godzilla and how to stop the MUTOs.
    I just want to give Johnson a good slap, you are good actor for crying out loud so stop phoning it in like Brittany Spears miming at one of her concerts.

  45. “ … did anyone else read that and hope he went out of his way to trample just one more skyscraper on the way past?”

    Yes, well sort of. I hoped he’d accidentally brush another skyscraper down on his way into the cooling brink … but because of a hangover, you see. (nothing personal)

  46. Tons of Spoilers…
    I took my kiddos 10 and 13 and we all loved it. We decided it was a traditional Japanese Godzilla movie with a Hollywood budget. Some of the scenes were so incredibly beautiful I actually appreciated the art of the film. However, a true Godzilla movie is all about Godzilla destroying buildings and kicking monster butt. This movie delivered.
    I thought the background of the family was unnecessarily dark but it did inspire some deep discussions about nuclear energy, the Fukushima power plant’s issues in Japan, and the effect of radiation. Even the 10 year old was confused why San Fransisco wasn’t a smoking crater from the last nuclear bomb. We agreed to believe that the Godzilla ate it and that is why he woke up, but seriously what a story line issue. Having more Cranston and Watanabe dialogging about Godzilla and radiation would have been so much better than following this GI Joe dude around.
    However, my personal biggest issue is the stupid wife/mother/nurse not evacuating the city with her kid. She can’t leave because her big strong manly man was coming for her???? She had the only female role in the entire movie (another huge issue) and she was frankly embarrassing. We agreed to believe that she couldn’t leave because she was working as a nurse and was on duty but come on. I have loved Godzilla movies my entire life and I really enjoyed this one; but as a feminist I prefer Pacific Rim.

  47. ” … We agreed to believe …”

    Well, how about that Godzilla is really female? I’d prefer that anyway.

    ((I’ll quit lurking now …)

  48. In the fifties/sixties I watched Godzilla take out Tokyo many times. Please, no more Godzilla for this lifetime. Not even with great special effects. Not unless Godzilla becomes a sympathetic character with feelings, family to protect, and meaning and purpose to its life. Now that might be worth watching.

  49. Glad you commented on the 2-minute recap trailer. I HATE those with a passion. An entire team of people spend years putting together a great move with plot twists and surprises. Then before the movie is out a trailer person makes a cut that gives away all the surprises.

    Do directors or screenwriters get a say in trailers, or is that all studio boss and marketing people?

  50. The main reason I thought Godzilla was better than Pacific Rim (and I loved PR) was this;

    If Pacific Rim had been about dudes in power-armour (ala Starship Troopers, the novel not the movie) fighting 10ft high monsters it still would’ve been the same movie. It would’ve used all the same cinematography, the same choreography etc. Everything MOVED like a regular person/animal of average height. There was no sense of weight.

    If Godzilla had been only ten feet tall you couldn’t make the movie. At all. Every scene would have to be re-scripted, every camera angle changed. The monsters themselves would have had to move differently.

    Godzilla had WEIGHT to it, he had a sense of unimaginable bulk and power that the fast moving Kaiju of PR just lacked.

    Godzilla ’98 had the same problem. The best scenes were the baby-Zillas because at least then they were moving in a logical manner. The giant Zilla just looked unconvincing being that sleek at that size.

    In fairness to both Pacific Rim, and Godzilla, I don’t really think they should be compared. They are completely different genres. Sure they both have giant monsters, but that’s like saying The Expendables is comparable to the The Last King of Scotland because there are guns and warlords in both of those.

    Pacific Rim was a straight up action-adventure movie. Godzilla was a disaster film, they just had daikaiju (I’m nitpicky, Godzilla is daikaiju, not kaiju, the ‘dai’ is the giant part) instead of a hurricane or a volcano.

  51. The modern trailers trend is pretty damn annoying, but it’s basically a throwback to the trailers of 1950s & 60s SF films, that told you everything.

    Although with regards to the Godzilla trailers, I haven’t seen the film yet and I’m pretty sure the scene in question doesn’t go down this way, but the implication that the government was covering up a kaiju attack felt like the marketing department of this film was trying to insult my intelligence.

  52. I have to agree with sgasx way up top about Cloverfield. I didn’t last more than about 20-30 minutes. The conceit of one of the characters conveniently holding a webcam at a roughly level angle just made no sense AT ALL, given all the places he goes, and I just could not keep watching. Totally punctured my suspension of disbelief.
    I am looking forward to this version of Godzilla.
    Saw most of Pacific Rim, liked it, and plan to watch it again.

  53. Godzilla 1998… sigh. One look at that profile, and every time I saw Godzilla after that in that film, I was seeing Jay Leno… That chin in profile..!!!

  54. I was very disappointed in this film. The human characters never interested me at all and the plot was too filled with the stupids. Even for a monster film. I do grade on a curve and liked Pacific Rim very much. But then I also think the Broderick Godzilla was half a really good movie. All the bits with the French were fantastic.

    I found the HALO scene particularly silly. They need to get 5 miles into the city. Bikes anyone? Or a Humvee towing another Humvee in case the monster sets off another EMP. Then switch to bikes after losing two Humvees, That has to be faster than getting to an airport and getting to 30k feet and jumping with an untrained squid.

    One call out for smart writing (the only one imo); though filmed on the Nimitz, a nuclear carrier, the ship was called the Saratoga, a conventional carrier and hence not as yummy and attractive to the monsters. Attention to that level of detail is unusual and was very satisfying.

  55. I liked that when the fights began the art direction ran almost to black and white looking rather than color, all bleached out, overcast and dark.
    I liked that all the human stories seemed dumb, boring and insignificant, as this was a movie about Mother Nature balancing herself, and we really were just ineffective bit players in that. I liked that so much of the human stories were dumb luck, good luck, bad luck, random chance and that most of the humans did not really move things along so much as get moved along. I liked that with all the gear and training, there was really nothing the military could do. I liked that it all came down to Godzilla as this was a movie about Godzilla. I think that for most folks the movie felt flat and disconnected from human stories, because it was. I hope it was on purpose.

  56. Hmm, Godzilla was good, and to be honest, the human characters did what I thought I would do too if I was put in that situation. The link where the lady goes off and says everything could’ve been done by a girl, well okay?

    Did you want a monster movie, or a movie where all the guys are killed horribly (hell, Sgt. Ford or whatever his name in was nearly killed in the transport mission) and women are the saviors?

    Meh, as for the HALO jump, yes there are bikes, or diesel engines or anything more resistant to EMP. That said the female MUTO, from my understanding, emitted it all the time, biking into a disaster zone that also have none of its roads cleared or even roads anymore is impossible, especially when on the time limit. So a C-5 taking off, going straight up into the air, and then dropping your dudes in a HALO jump made sense for me. In the time it takes for that C-5 to drop its load, you’re still navigating the now screwed up streets of San Francisco, and when you get to the bomb, you see you only have enough time to say ‘Oh Shi-‘.

    And also exhausted from the several miles of back and forth, side to side, up and down biking.

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