– By Linda Tran
Starring: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Ken Watanabe, Bryan Cranston, and Sally Hawkins.
Whether you liked or disliked the 1998 Matthew Broderick-starring version of Godzilla, this latest reboot directed by Gareth Edwards is a magnificent film that surpasses the ‘90s version and will amaze movie fans – new and old.
This reboot, with its spectacular special effects and beautiful wide shots, respectfully honours the 1954 original (while undoubtedly pretending the ‘90s version doesn’t exist). Edwards was a superb choice to direct the rebirth of the King of the Monsters as he had an eye for the impressive and amazing shots, but has also shown considerable restraint from going overboard. If you don’t mind a gradual build at the beginning, this film becomes really intense and you get the ominous sense of impending doom.
There have been debates about casting – whether Bryan Cranston could convincingly move from television to film, or if Aaron Taylor-Johnson would be believable with all that extra muscle bulk as a United States soldier. In response to those points – if Breaking Bad proved anything, it is that Cranston can adapt into any genre he is cast in; and Taylor-Johnson, already known for being the titular hero from Kick Ass, really steps up in this film and proves that he can be a ‘doomsday’ action hero.
All that aside, the main reason why anyone would go see this film is for the monster himself. There are not enough adjectives to explain how amazingly the film’s visual effects team created him. Admittedly, he is larger in size (both height and width) than the previous few versions, but none of that really matters when you finally see him in action. Also for any of the fans of Godzilla, his roar would – by far – be the best sound effect to hit the screen all year. You will wish you were a young child again, just to justify that need to walk out of the cinema roaring and stamping your feet (crushing the tiny city you’re imagining under your feet).
I don’t want to give away too much, but this film will tick off everything you would wish for in a Godzilla reboot… and then some. I have to admit, even though Godzilla was stomping all over cities, you can’t help but cheer for him in everything he does. Godzilla has climbed its way to the top of my list of recommended movies to see. So grab a friend (or an entire group), then stomp and roar your way to the nearest cinema.