From that first trailer that debuted last year it was easy to see this wasn’t going to be your daddy’s Godzilla. Generally, with each incarnation Toho does tend to tweak the mythos and/or appearance a tad, with Godzilla: Final Wars (2004) being the most “radical.” I’m not a big fan of all Godzilla movies, as an adult I tend to steer clear of the ones aimed more to kids than anything else, which thankfully is only a very small percentage, but I outright hated Final Wars, so I was happy Toho (12 years later) decided to finally make another movie. Whether this leads to another franchise remains to be seen, but overall I liked the flick. I want to say I loved it, but I can’t take my adulation that far. What Toho did this time around that I really liked, though, was they gave us a Godzilla a hundred times more destructive than any other with a more sinister appearance! But they shoved this new creation in a nearly boring movie. Had the Godzilla scenes not been as impressive I would have given this movie a direct thumbs down, but his scenes are interspersed nicely throughout to keep you watching.
What I didn’t care for was that nearly all the characters focused on are bureaucrats, when Godzilla isn’t trashing the city the movie moves to the various boardrooms so we can watch our characters figure out how to deal with this catastrophe. There was even one almost laughable scene where they moved from one boardroom to another then back again, depending on what decisions they made. Eventually some scientists are gathered into a group to try and figure out how to destroy Big G to break up the monotony of suits coming in and out of the movie.
Godzilla’s origin is different here. Apparently we Americans knew about this creature for a long time and even gave it the name of Godzilla. And when I say we Americans I mean the government. Sixty years ago a “unique marine organism” fed upon the discarded radioactive garbage in the ocean and mutated into a massive beast that comes ashore in the first few minutes of the movie. It’s not quite the Godzilla we’re familiar with, but that’s because the creature is in the process of evolving. It also exudes radiation wherever it goes which means parts of Tokyo become contaminated. Its objective at the beginning seems to just keep walking until it can’t walk anymore, then it collapses and evolves into another mid-way form before becoming the creature we’ve all seen in the trailer! And like all Godzilla’s that have come before this one too is indestructible. The military tries out all their weapons and everything just bounces off its hide, then bombs are dropped directly on it, this brings blood and injury, and it also triggers Godzilla’s defenses. His breath weapon is so much more destructive, starting out as a gaseous, black plume that branches out all over the ground before changing into a fire-breathing furnace that ignites the black plume and everything it flowed over. But then it gets worse, or more impressive, depending on who you are, as his fire-breath becomes a purple ray that cuts buildings in half. His mouth even disjoints and opens up impossibly wide. These purple rays also shoot out of his back and from the tip of his mutated tail. Cool, hey?
The three forms Godzilla evolves through in the movie!
The scientists come to the conclusion they can make a coagulant that can be injected into Godzilla that would literally freeze him. Meanwhile the U.S. has come bearing dark gifts informing our main characters Tokyo has fifteen days (after annihilating everything around him with his death rays, Godzilla goes into a kind of hibernation with speculation he’ll wake up in approximately fifteen days) to evacuate 3.6 billion people before they drop a nuke on the monster! This will also obliterate all of Tokyo! Our bureaucratic characters don’t like this plan, but agree to it since Tokyo is essentially already in the crapper now thanks to the damage the monster has already done, so why not reduce it all to ash and rebuild from scratch. Thankfully it doesn’t come to that since they persuade the global powers to hold off on nuking until they inject their coagulant and see if it works.
This is where we get to see Tokyo execute a rather clever plan to incapacitate Godzilla with their bullet trains, turning them into mobile explosives, knocking buildings down on top of him, so these specialized vehicles can rush in and pour the serum into his open mouth. This happens a couple of times since they anticipated Big G would thwart part of the plan at a certain point, eventually all the serum gets pumped into his gut and by God it works! Godzilla is turned into a biological piece of art right there in the middle of Tokyo.
But, and you knew there was a ‘but’ coming, the final shot is of the tip of his tail that seems to be slowly evolving into yet another phase. It’s theorized Godzilla is a constantly evolving monster able to evolve into anything that will ensure his survival and when that next film comes (a sequel isn’t predicted to happen until after 2020) it’s going to get decidedly weirder! Have a look below.
The is the first Godzilla flick from Toho where the Big G is all computer animated and 99% of the CGI looked astounding! I was very impressed!
Video/Audio/Subtitles: 1080p 2.40:1 high definition widescreen—3.1 Japanese Dolby TrueHD, 3.1 English Dolby TrueHD—English subs only
The transfer on this looked extraordinary!
Extras included . . .
- Godzilla vs. The Nerds: Interviews (33:05)