This new and reimagined creature of Godzilla is a mastery of story telling and CGI combined. Gone is the rubber suit that made Toho famous. Now we have a monster that is more bear than cat. Even though more of the fights are CGI, the film still stays true to the feel of the battles that Toho made famous with the King of Monsters. Some might not like the new ‘Zilla but other than it being more bear like instead of cat like, I like the new beast and this reviewer feels that so will others, given a chance.
The film opens up with a backdrop of nuclear testing in the ’50s. Even the credits that roll are interesting if you actually read them before the redaction sequence. Ones like the examples here are quite amusing:
Reliability of these sightings is still questionable based on the character witness. One must ask, is “Godzilla” owned and created by TOHO CO., LTD.
And another interesting one:
This is the Zuiyo-Maco carcass first discovered in the Japanese story by New Zealand fishermen in 1977. The Carcass DAVID CALLAHAM, was decaying and weighed 4000 lbs. This dinosaur had been dead for about 30 days. “Pseudo-scientists” tried to say this was a mere basking shark.
Even through out the film you see quirks and paid homage to the original films and to Toho itself. I just hop they bring some more of the cat like features back into the beast we have all grown to love. No matter what it is still an impressive creature.
After the poke fun of opening credits we are shown a helicopter that is on its way to a dig site. The scientists on board are the team of Dr. Ishiro Serizawa (Ken Watanabe) of Monarch. It is an organization that was formed to try and find the monster Godzilla that they thought they had destroyed with all those nuclear bombs in the ’50s. They were to study its remains to better help them understand it and to protect the world from any other creatures that might be hiding in the depths of the world and the ocean. As to the dig site, they find the remains of what looks to be a rather long and large snake like creature. Not a dinosaur but something far older that fed on radiation. Even though this one was long dead there were 2 spores on it that have been waiting a long time to gestate.
One of the spores opens before the scientists get there and escapes into open waters off the Philippines. It makes a b-line to the nearest source of radiation so that it can feed. That destination is where Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston) and his wife Sandra Brody (Juliette Binoche) work at the Janjira nuclear plant in Japan. They live there with this young son Ford (CJ Adams) who is in love with the character Godzilla. He even has a terrarium with a cocoon in it named Mothra. Joe has been tracking seismic vibrations and is worried that it is going to affect the power plant. He tells his wife to go down and check things out while he works with the plant’s engineers to see what is going on. Just as he is starting to go through the data the plant is hit and destroyed by the newly hatched spore, in the process he is scared for life as he must watch his wife die in a cloud of radiation.
Fast forward 14 years and we see an adult Lt. Ford Brody (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) getting ready to depart a C-150 after a 14 month deployment over seas as an EOD specialist for the Navy. Once home he is greeted by his wife Elle Brody (Elizabeth Olsen), a nurse, and his young dinosaur obsessed son Sam Brody (Carson Bolde). We get to see just how happy a family they are and the Sam’s concern that his father will be there in the morning. Something that many families that are in the service face all the time. He promises that he will be but is called away to deal with his father Joe. Joe has been arrested for going into the quarantine zone that was set up after the Janjira disaster. Though what is really going on there is beyond what even Joe could imagine.
At the Janjira plant, Monarch is studying and feeding the spore that destroyed the plant. They are afraid that if they kill it all the radiation that it has absorbed will be released to create an even deadlier tragedy than what happened in the first place. It is that same spore that will cause the King of Monsters, Godzilla, to awaken from his slumber. It is also just one of the two spores that were collected at the site in the Philippines. The other is actually a female that is looking to spawn some eggs that will truly destroy the earth.
This film is a wild ride that just wont let you go, not even after it ends. The one thing that I do wish is that the monster fight scenes would have been in more lit areas. Most of them were at night. While it might give a more dramatic feel it would have been nice to be able to see more of the action. I know that traditionally Toho made most of the fights at night due to technical reason the newer films should not have to be that way. With the new Godzilla being done with computer graphics there are no technical restraints on having the fights in the light of day. Here is hoping that the next one will have more than just night time fights for the G-Man.
I give this film a Musing review of