This movie review is LONG overdue... And it's been ages since I wrote a post about Godzilla so here we are! LET'S DO THIS!!!!!!
Godzilla '14 is a fantastic movie. Enough said! But let's delve deeper, where I will talk about everything I liked, I didn't like and some other stuff.
Godzilla '14 manages to accomplish not one but TWO things. 1 and most important: America can make good kaiju movies too! And 2 and less important: They actually made a decent story on the human side of the film! Of course there are a few plot-holes (like, spoiler alert!, they tried to nuke the evil kaiju known as M.U.T.O., despite the fact that they already established that M.U.T.O. literally eats nuclear weapons for dinner).
And unlike the previous attempt at making a Godzilla film in the States, '14 stays true with the base design and improves on it. In case you want to know what the previous attempt was, it was the 1998 film. Which was bad all because they messed with the King of the Monster's design.
The original 1960's design...
So now you can see how Godzilla aged through the years.
But on to the movie.
The '14 movie is probably the most atmospheric kaiju film I have seen. And keep in mind I watched pretty much all the kaiju films. Except Gamera. And Battle Bird. Those guys can go do their own thing for all I care! Because they are nowhere near as kick-butt awesome as Godzilla. Anyway, this film has some really creepy music. You'll see what I mean if you buy it on blu-ray.
the premise of the movie is basically, an nuclear physicist named Joseph Brody (played by Brian Cranston) supervised a damage check at the Janjiro, Japan Nuclear Power Plant.
And the repair team is led by his wife, which according to the wiki is Sandra Brody but they never state her name in the film. Anyway, something goes wrong and evil gas of doom fills the area of the power plant that Sandra's team is in. They were unable to escape in time, and Mr. Brody was forced to seal the door before they could get out or risk endangering everyone else. Yeah. The movie starts out so sad! And this is a KAIJU film people! Normally the human story is an afterthought! But Legendary actually took the time to make a good story! IN A KAIJU FILM! WHAT IS THIS WITCHCRAFT!? If only all kaiju movies could do that! So bonus points for doing something that is never done before!
Anyway, the film then fast forwards 15 years later, where Joe Brody's son, Ford Brody, is all grown up now. And is a soldier. Trained in bomb disposal! And he has a wife and kid! But Joe Brody wants to know what caused the power plant to blow up all those years ago. He finds out the government is hiding something in the remains of the power plant. So, with the help of Ford, Joe Brody manages to sneak into a quarantine zone. the city was put into quarantine because of "lethal radiation". But there isn't any radiation in the quarantine zone to begin with!
And turns out a secret organisation called Project Monarch was hiding a cocoon. For a brand new kaiju! Which is promptly named the MUTO (Mutant Unidentified Terrestrial Organism).
Now I are some things I like about the MUTO's (there are two, one with wings and the other) and some things I don't like. What I like, is that they resemble insects, and there are not a whole lot of kaiju insects. What I don't like is that they borrow so many characteristics of previous kaiju. At least the E.M.P. attack they have is completely original. But the male MUTO looks like a bug version of Rodan! Which is almost funny considering Rodan is confirmed to play an important role in the sequel (more on that later).
Now something this movie does REALLY well is that they nailed the scale. This is the largest version of the King of the Monsters and this film constantly reminds you of that. It even has some first person shots of the kaiju mid combat! First person human perspective by the way.
Then there is the final showdown. Something that some people will find annoying is that despite this being Godzilla's story, he doesn't get that much screen-time. But then again in the classic movies Godzilla was onscreen for 10-15 minutes, tops.
But as much I have been praising Godzilla '14 for having a good story, there are plot-holes. Chief among them is that the military tried to lure the MUTO's out with a tactical nuke and detonate it when they get close. BUT THEY LITERALLY JUST SAW THAT THEY CAN EAT NUCLEAR BOMBS LIKE THEY ARE SLIM JIMS!!! Sorry but they should have listened to Ken Watanabe's character and "Let them Fight".
Overall, this is a good movie. I give it a 9/10 (not a perfect 10 because plot-holes bug me).
I recommend getting this on blu-ray. Is it a must have/must watch movie? Depends on whether you are a kaiju fan. If you do not know anything about the kaiju genre, this is a great starting point. If you are longtime Godzilla/general kaiju fan than this is definitely a must watch.
P.S. Godzilla 2 hype!!!! They announced it a few weeks ago and it is scheduled to release in 2018. I'll be a legal adult by then. But the point is that rather than having new kaiju to deal with, Godzilla will face his most iconic foe: King Ghidorah!!! For those of you who never heard of King Ghidorah, he is a three-headed golden dragon who, in the classic movies, is Godzilla's arch-nemesis. Basically like the kaiju version of Lex Luthor from Superman.