*This review contains spoilers. Sorry.*
Godzilla, eh? Oh yeah, that film, the one that wasn’t that great and everyone sort of forgot about, right? Yeah, sort of – though it did get some serious slating from a certain someone. Nonetheless, I got it on Blu-ray, I think, last Christmas, and I hadn’t watched it, and decided to watch it the other day — over a year since I last watched it, in the cinema. Ah those were good times. Wait, what? Oh yeah, the review! Here goes…
For a disappointing film, it certainly starts very well; with a great setting and introductions to seemingly great characters, one being played by the now famous Bryan Cranston (as of Breaking Bad, although he was at his best in Malcolm in the Middle). He was fantastic, and played a great character (Joe Brody), who in dramatic scenes at the start of the film blossomed. However, as the film introduces you to its slow pace, boring military guys and Aaron Taylor-Johnson as the relatively uninteresting, older kid who was in the start of the film (Lieutenant Ford): it suddenly goes from great to mediocre, if not a little bad. And, (sorry, but this has to be included in the review), after about 35 minutes or so of screen time, Bryan Cranston goes and dies, a very anticlimactic death, which gives his slightly boring son the undeserved limelight. And that does make me a bit angry.
As the film goes on, suspense is built, and it is built pretty well… But where’s Godzilla? Yes, I understand they were trying to save the best till last, but, seriously, it’s named after him, and the few and far between parts of the film he stars in are great — so why isn’t he in it more? Instead, the Mutos grab most of the attention, which are cool, and do some cool stuff, and are the result of fantastic special effects; but there is not enough of them or Godzilla, instead there is too much of military guys talking about them and people watching news videos of them crashing down the Eiffel Tower – which was a particularly uninventive scene.
Furthermore, most of the film’s set in America, which is certainly a bit boring, and lazy, I think; but most importantly it doesn’t stick to Godzilla’s heritage, bar a few Japanese little things here and there and about 20 minutes set there. Godzilla’s a Japanese thing. Come on. But that isn’t so big a flaw as the film’s length, which is unacceptably long for the amount of content actually in it.
Nonetheless, the film has a great score, there are cool bits here and there, and there is a great climax towards the end, Pacific Rim style – if a bit less ridiculously cool — and the start of the film is great.
But no one can argue that it’s a flawed film (and in a pretty major way too). It is too long, with too little Bryan Cranston, Japan, and Godzilla, and too much random military guys who do nothing and Aaron Taylor-Johnson.
It’s not a glowing endorsement of Gareth Edwards, but I don’t understand some of the slating it’s got. However disappointing it is, Godzilla is an alright film – ish.
So I give it: 53/100.