It really does the heart good to see a modern blockbuster taking ques from the classics.
Not the older ‘Zillas (although the basic storylines are honored), no I’m referring to such timeless creature features such as Jaws and Jurrasic Park. Films which respected the audience and actually have the balls to hold back on the carnage and build up such old fashioned concepts such as suspense and tension. Thanks to this approach the film makers also avoid that most frequent of problems associated with the cinema’s summer silly season: not blowing your load halfway through the film.
Despite Godzilla’s controlled exposure, he’s still the bad tempered, thick thighed, force of nature we know and love (and not the fish obsessed giant iguana who panics at the sound of gunfire in the atrocious 90’s attempt) who may save us from various monstery threats but still causes a devastating tsunami while coming ashore.
Most of the city crushing heavy lifting is caused by intimidating behemoths called MUTO’s, basically every nasty species of critter from Starship Troopers mashed into one huge superbug and an effective menace they are.
The humans (always a weak point in monster movies) do a good job too by being surprisingly likable. Bryan Cranston gives maximum Bryan Cranston and Ken Wantanbe spouts such how-does-he-know-that portentous hocus pocus you wonder if he isn’t so much a scientist as Godzilla’s press agent.
Some with short attention spans may be peeved at the movies deliberate pace (this isn’t the candy-coloured crunch-fest of Pacific Rim) but if jaw dropping visuals are more your bag you’ll be catered for too. Battleships following the big G’s spikes as he forges toward his multi storied opponents, crashing jets telegraphed by their pilots parachuting through mist, a HALO drop passes THROUGH a monster fight, it’s all powerful stuff.
And when the movie finally lets you into it’s final act saurion smackdown, it pays off. Big time.
Oh yeah, see it big and see it loud. The screening I was at was so loud it made my hair vibrate!
The king has returned.