Thursday, May 15, 2014


Bottom Line: The only thing truly groundbreaking in this big budget beast of a movie is the actual ground…breaking.  Many things do break, crumble, tumble, explode and smash in glorious fashion, but almost everything that leads up to the eventual creature action – the stuff we’re there to see – feels overly familiar; a paint-by-numbers barrage of foot soldiers, traffic jams, people mindlessly spectating and uninteresting characters making uninteresting decisions motivated by uninteresting dialogue.  We’ve seen much of this before, and anyone who tells you different has never seen another movie…  MAN OF STEEL, KING KONG, PACIFIC RIM, THE TRANSFORMERS, JURASSIC PARK – heck, even the GHOSTBUSTER’S Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man had his fare share of midtown mayhem (Nobody steps on a church in my town!).  …and if stern, mystified and blank on-screen stares were people, this new GODZILLA movie would be Tokyo.  That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy some of the bombastic nature of it all, it’s a summer blockbuster and should be treated thusly – no less, certainly (in this case) no more.  The filmmakers powerfully set the hook with an absorbing opening credit sequence and adjacent 20+ minute set-up that was equally enthralling.  The creature visuals are impressive and lend themselves to an immaculately imagined, immediate, scaly-skinned, 350-foot tall threat – with every stubby-legged step, each eardrum-ringing roar perfectly manufactured for maximum impact.  Would I have liked to see more of the big man?  Sure, he’s teased at quite a bit – some of it deliberate, some just plain careless.  GODZILLA as a whole may take itself a tad too serious, but the inner city, Big Time Wrestling squabbles on display are impressive and almost deliver the requisite amount of popcorn munching thrills.  Not unlike a Chinese food dinner, however, you may find yourself starving for more big screen entertainment sooner than you thought…
Starring: Bryan Cranston, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Ken Watanabe, Elizabeth Olsen, David Strathairn and Juliette Binoche
Directed by: Gareth Edwards (MONSTERS)
Running time: 123 minutes
Studio description: In Summer 2014, the world's most revered monster is reborn as Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures unleash the epic action adventure "Godzilla." From visionary new director Gareth Edwards ("Monsters") comes a powerful story of human courage and reconciliation in the face of titanic forces of nature, when the awe-inspiring Godzilla rises to restore balance as humanity stands defenseless. (c) Warner Bros
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