"Godzilla: King of Monsters”
Warner Brothers Pictures
Directed by Michael Dougherty
Starring Godzilla, Mothra, Vera Farmiga, Ken Watanabe, Sally Hawkins, Millie Bobby Brown, Kyle Chandler and Bradley Whitford.
I have never been a huge “Godzilla” fanboy.
Sure, I acknowledge the kicky appeal of watching the giant lizard stomp his way past the Tokyo skyline, but apart from the monster mayhem, these films have never held much emotional appeal for me. “Godzilla” may be the draw, but it’s the squishable humans below that make me care about what happens in the movie. A poorly drawn human story makes for a mediocre monster movie, even with the very best of special effects.
That’s what we get in the big fella’s latest movie, “Godzilla: King of Monsters.” This mindless summer blockbuster features cool visuals, but very little else to make this worth a trip to the multiplex. I suppose that the addition of Mothra, Rodan, King Ghidorah and the other giant creatures add some excitement to the mix, but does anybody really care which Kaiju creature shows up for the fight?
As for the humans, we get a pretty silly story where an eco-terrorist steals a sonar device that can lure these giant monsters up from the deep. His plan is to restore the world to its natural state, whatever that means. It’s up to a small group of plucky scientists and military personnel to keep the monsters in check long enough to save humanity from utter annihilation.
Like I said, it’s a pretty silly story that does little more than provide the framework for the giant monster fights. Unfortunately, these title card bouts are poorly executed. The monsters are frequently obscured by clouds or rain, and they are frequently lensed with a shaky camera style that has become synonymous with mediocre fight choreography.
That’s a shame because the creature design is superb. These Kaiju look absolutely photorealistic and there are more than a few instances where the cinematography is absolutely stunning. It’s as if the producers forget to tell the camera crew that this is only supposed to be a schlocky summer flick.
To be fair, the vast majority of those who are excited for the latest adventures of Big Ol’ Stompy won’t care about any of these artistic touches. If you just want to sit back and watch the carnage, then I suppose that you will enjoy the spectacle of “Godzilla: King of Monsters.” There’s also the campy appeal of cheering for Godzilla, no matter how outrageous the circumstance.
Yet that’s not enough to make you forget that this blockbuster is too long, over-stuffed with forgettable characters and pointless storylines. Most problematic is the idea that while the filmmakers left the door open for plenty of sequels, the movie itself doesn’t exactly leave you hungering for more.
“Godzilla: King of Monsters” may have some cool special effects moments, but the overall movie will leave all but his most devoted fans feeling crushed by yet another mediocre movie.
Movie reviews by Sean, “The Movie Guy,” are each week in “The Port Arthur News” and seen weekly on KFDM and Fox4. Sean welcomes your comments via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.