Film Review: Godzilla (2014)
Reviewer: Olen Bjorgo
Godzilla is one of those cultural icons that has the international fame and appeal
to multiple ages and generations. For sixty years, the King of the Monsters has graced
the screen, from ancient primordial threat to Cold War metaphor, from humanity’s
mightiest hero to its greatest enemy. This Godzilla, however, is a different beast
that is inspired by a mixture of these various aspects. And while this film portrays
an Americanized version of the most well-
“Damn right. I straight up murdered that poser once I got
back with my Toho crew!”
Though the days of the costumed monster might be nothing more than a distant memory, the Godzilla films in general have always been spectacles that can be enjoyed in a visual sense, and this is no different. While we don’t see much of Godzilla in the beginning, we are introduced to a number of different locations over the course of the film, and a lot of them are destroyed. Perhaps to the chagrin of some fans, or lovers of the stereotypes and tropes associated with giant monster films, Tokyo is not destroyed. Instead, we have a destroyed San Francisco… which was the first city targeted in Pacific Rim. However, what we do see of the monsters is truly awesome. Not in the “this is awesome!” variety but the “I am in awe by what I see,” because not only are they truly behemoth but they just look absolutely phenomenal.
“You’re next, Oakland.”
The audio is big and loud and bombastic, but that’s like saying a musical has singing. While it is a shame that the rights to the original Godzilla theme weren’t purchased for this film, it’s strangely for the best simply because this is its own film. The opening track, aptly named “Godzilla!”, captures the feel of the original films: it prepares you to feel the unspeakable power created by beings so far removed from us that it can be best described as inhuman. The track that plays when Godzilla’s foe, the MUTO (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism), hatches from his spore is equally powerful. The soundtrack, composed by Alexandre Desplat (The King’s Speech), is worthy of a nomination to say the least in my book.
While many might decry the lack of Godzilla being seen in the film, it’s honestly
going along with a tradition of many Godzilla films, where you will probably say
“Well it’s about time you arrived!” when the big lizard does arrive, and was more
of a comfort to me that they didn’t have Godzilla show up and start destroying everything
right away. There was a slow build up as the MUTO did all the big destruction scenes,
and it portrayed Godzilla more as a hero, but that is a big if, since Godzilla is
not beneath massive acts of destruction, nor would I even say Godzilla acted as an
Come on, Dad. Change the channel before somebody blames
While the cast consists of brilliant actors, I can’t help but feel that some were
But what do I expect from a Godzilla film? I expect to have fun. I expect to see destruction. I expect to see monsters fighting and causing death and mayhem to metropolitan areas. And do you know what I got? I got exactly what I expected, and I’m satisfied. If you’re a bit uncertain, maybe wait for the film, and rent it. However, I feel like even if you are uncertain you should still go see it in theaters since it is the best way to experience it… unless your hobby is making your home entertainment as close to a movie theater as possible. If you’re expecting the sort of film that you would expect from Toho, don’t count on it. If you’re expecting the sort of film that we got when I was nine, prepare to be blown away. But if you’re expecting to have fun, even with its flaws, then I highly encourage you to see this film. If this gets the big box office numbers then maybe we can expect a new line of Godzilla films for a whole new generation of fans. And if that doesn’t happen, we can at least still enjoy the old movies.
Atmosphere & Experience: 8
Director: Gareth Edwards
Producer: Thomas Tull
Studio: Legendary Pictures, W.B.
Release Date (U.S.): May 16, 2014
Release Date (E.U.): May 14, 2014
Release Date (JP): Jul 25, 2014
Share this page:
Last Level Press © Copyright Cliff Davenport Est. 2013. | Legal Notices