Don't Let The Size Fool You

Godzilla (2014)
A Review By Ben Hunter
3½ Out Of 5 Stars
May 16, 2014


I really was completely sold from the marketing and past experiences yet I was completely disappointed from the pay off I received with the actual film.

“I'm done talking to you, alright? What, you're looking at me right now, like I'm in a fish tank, right? That's fine because I know what happened here. You keep telling everybody that this place is a death zone but it's not! You're LYING!  Because what's really happening is that you’re HIDING something out there! I'm right, aren't I? MY WIFE DIED HERE!!! Something killed my wife and I've a right to know! I deserve answers!”
In 1954, there were a series of tests held in the pacific dealing with the atom bomb … they weren’t tests.  Something was out there, and they were trying to rid the world of it. 


The most terrifying creature in Asian culture has surfaced in America!  However, now, the stakes are different; as what was once a monster that terrified us all in fear of it and its destruction, is now our savior.  Yes, you heard me correctly; Godzilla is faced against 2 malevolent creatures (that excite any fan aware of the story of Godzilla) in a battle that threatens the very existence of humanity. 

“Gojira”, a mix of the two Japanese words that stand for “gorilla” and “whale”. Thus giving us the origins of his look and behavior.  His story is one that speaks to the humanity of men.  Monster movies tend to reference an aspect of society that questions our ethics.  Godzilla is known to be a metaphor for nuclear weapons and why we engage them.  This story is a very moving tale if done right as the catastrophe and destruction can really be a moving feature of this tale to help us live with more love in our lives and cherish every moment.  Something the original does brilliantly!

I like the Godzilla as a savior storyline here.  It’s a new-refreshed take on it from before to give the new generations a rebirthed Godzilla for their day and age.  Remember, every story is some kind of structure or template that’s already in existence and it’s up to the artist to take that story and make it his or her own. 
A tearful view due to the aftermath of what's happened in our county due to man's scientific arrogance.
So if you’re going to rebirth Godzilla, please honor his past!  I don’t feel this was done in the slightest, well nowhere near the completion of such. 

I really like how in “1954” tests were done, ’54 being the year of the release of Gojira the original Japanese film that first introduced Godzilla to the big screen.  I love the introduction of different and classic monsters from Godzilla’s history and making him the hero and not the villain like he was originally to later become the hero in other storylines as he progressed as a character.  I REALLY enjoyed seeing him in some of the angles and IMAX shot selections as a gigantic, awesome creature with so much detail in his creation and body.  There was a shot of him walking near the bridge having just surfaced from the water and he had this look on his face over his shoulder as the military followed him that just said to me, “I’m a bad butt, don’t mess with me!” 

But none of this made up for the lack of story I experienced.  For starters, I felt kind of disrespected in the misleading use of Bryan Cranston’s character in the marketing versus in the actual film.  His speech, which I quoted, and was part of the main reason why I wanted to see this new rendition, was amazing!  But it led me to think one thing amazing about the film and receive something terribly unsatisfying in return. 

Everything amazing about the marketing that got me so excited about the film didn’t compare to the pay off I received with the actual film.  When it was over I thought the best part was the IMAX promo before the film began where Godzilla’s voice slowly takes over the speakers and fills the entire room including your insides with fear yet with amazement as well of how overwhelming of a sound it is to get you ready to experience this amazing story you’ve been hyped up all this time to see. 

Then I get a kid hero I don’t care about.  I hear music that I remember from the trailer that was SO SUSPENSEFUL and nicely done by the talented Alexandre Desplat to get me trembling in fear and EXTREME ANTICIPATION of what will happen next in a spot of the story that I don’t care really that much at all about what will happen next (the bungee jump scene).  I remember saying, “REALLY?!  That’s what happens here in the movie with the brilliant music?!” 

The original film was so brilliant, yet I’m not expecting this to compare, nor should I even bother to try.  The 90’s version doesn’t do that yet I enjoyed myself with that experience.  That was for my generation as young and new moviegoers, this was to introduce the character to the young people of today who were like us back then.  To make my generation and before remember the wonderful experience he’s given us and to usher in a new group and give them something wonderful as well and to look forward to in the future. 

I told people to wait for Netflix. 

Action & Adventure, 123 Minutes, PG-13
Story by: Dave Callaham
Screenplay by: Max Morenstein
Cast: Aaron Taylor Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Ken Wantanbe, & Bryan Cranston 

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