Entertainment

Reel Reviews: Monsters make an impression in Godzilla

Godzilla’s tail overshadows two helicopters flying overhead in the remake of the Japanese classic. - Legendary Pictures/Warner Bros.
Godzilla’s tail overshadows two helicopters flying overhead in the remake of the Japanese classic.
— image credit: Legendary Pictures/Warner Bros.

F

ifteen years ago, a mysterious earthquake destroyed a nuclear power plant in Japan. After being cordoned off as an “inhabitable zone,” only a seemingly paranoid scientist (Bryan Cranston) thinks something strange is going on and ventures into the area to discover he is correct.

Authorities are hiding a giant monster. When that monster is accidentally freed everyone discovers it is not alone and it will take another, even bigger monster to save the planet.

We say, “Godzilla is fun, scary, silly, funny and awesome.”

TAYLOR: Sometimes I brush up on past films to prepare for our reviews, but I just couldn’t bring myself to watch the old Godzilla movies (see some guy in a rubber suit.) I have seen the terrible version Roland Emmerich made with Matthew Broderick in 1998. Yet, I was really looking forward to this new reboot, mostly due to the trailer. Call me a sucker for a creepy Gyorgy Ligeti choral piece and paratroopers dropping through saturated cloud cover, I’m happy to report that Godzilla satisfied me in a way that I haven’t felt in a long time.

Directed by Gareth Edwards, known for his cool sci-fi indie debut Monsters (which was a little boring,) and featuring the special effects teams that made the Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings films, Godzilla really is the star of this film.

Nerds online are complaining that we don’t get to see the monster enough, but I think those same nerds would also hate Jaws, which is just wrong. Jaws is a tense film because you don’t see much of the shark, then when you do, you poop your pants, a little.

Godzilla delivers a worthy, entertaining story in much the same fashion. There was only one moment where I said to myself, “yeah, yeah, get back to the monsters,” which is pretty good for a two-hour flick. There’s also plenty of people acting silly in the film, but often a story simply wouldn’t exist if people acted reasonably. (For instance, you might not want to send jets in to fight monsters that have in their arsenals, electro-magnetic pulses.) But some of that silliness was intentional and laughable, furthermore, the fact that Godzilla is the protagonist also created much of the humour in the film. So it’s OK to laugh: Perfect summer movie, gonna be hard to beat, do not miss it!

HOWE: With blockbusters coming out thick and fast at the moment – The Amazing Spiderman 2 last week, X-Men: Days of Future Past next week – people will have their choice of big movies and it gets a little expensive, so I will try and be more realistic with my score.

Godzilla is big, loud and filled with action, but it takes about an hour to get there. Yes, they have to give some backstory to the characters, but the acting ability is so wooden you could have ran to the hills and made a log cabin out of them to hide in. You talk about Jaws, but in that you had some actors that could act. In this, if they had just not blown the budget on special effects and got some half decent stars, it would have scored a lot higher.

On a plus point, the thing that I did really like is that the director didn’t try to do anything new or strange to the look of Godzilla. He looks like he has just stepped out from the original 1950s’ movies.

– Howe gives Godzilla 3 Halo jumps out of 5.

– Taylor gives it 4 tail whips out of 5.

The film is currently showing at the Galaxy Cinemas in Vernon.

Brian Taylor and Peter Howe are film reviewers based in Vernon. Their column runs in The Morning Star Friday and Sunday.

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