Saturday, May 17, 2014

Tag-team review: Godzilla

Matt Bellamy and I took in Gareth Edwards' Godzilla tonight -- flick got out mere moments ago to be exact. Being a couple of die hard Godzilla and monster movie fans, we thought we'd share a review of this much anticipated flick.

We're gonna trade off thoughts without discussing what will be said in advance. I'm gonna let Matt start things off. And yes, we're aware of the mixed public reaction, for what that's worth. Because who cares what other people fucking think.

Over to you, Matt.

Matt: Is Godzilla the "King of the Monster" movies? Yes, yes I do believe that it is. I understand where people are coming from when they complain that there isn't enough actual Godzilla in a movie titled 'Godzilla' however if you've seen the 1954 Toho original then it actually does follow the same basic structure. So, in that sense, it's extremely faithful! What say you, Jason?

Jason: Having watched pretty much every Toho Godzilla movie -- or at least a lot of them -- I agree completely. This is a pure Godzilla movie, right down to structure and pacing. Only done with an "A" budget and zero camp value. This is a serious, old school blockbuster that reminded me a lot of the big movies I grew up with.

Matt: Speaking of old school blockbusters, I believe that Steven Spielberg pretty much pioneered the "summer movie season" back in 1975 when Jaws was released, and I think it's clear that director Gareth Edwards was heavily influenced by many of Señor Spielbergo's massive crowd pleasing hits from back in the day. There is so much of that old-fashioned spectacle, and sense of awe on display here that it made me seriously giddy at points. Is it weird that I got giddy next to you, Jay?

Jason: Not at all Matt. I feel the same way . . . about the movie. Ha ha. But yeah, Edwards slow burns his Godzilla appearances, building to a seriously awesome final act. Yet I wasn't bothered by the 90-minute tease. I thought it worked in the flick's favour. The first time Godzilla really appears gave me goosebumps. And shit only gets more real from there. Over to you, Señor Bellamy.

Matt: Gareth Edwards must LOVE foreplay, I mean, his women must be a gooey mess in his hands before he really turns on the after-burners. That's what I felt like during this flick. I was being wined and dined, there was plenty of flirting going on, I was basically ready to go all the way in the first 15-minutes and then when I could take no more BAM!! Godzilla vs. The MUTO. Total destruction! People fleeing in terror! Cats and dogs living together! Mass hysteria! This is not Pacific Rim (although awesome in its own right) so maybe that's what more people expected? I can't get in the minds of the general public, they watch Big Brother, so I don't get them.

Jason: I think a lot of people went in expecting two hours of Godzilla wrecking shit. Or they had the 1998 shitfest that was Roland Emmerich's Godzilla on the brain. This isn't either of those concepts. In fact SPOILER ALERT Godzilla is the good guy! Speaking of good guys (and gals), I really like Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Ken Watanabe and Bryan Cranston. Humans aren't supposed to matter much in movies like this, but I thought everyone owned here. There isn't a weak link in this movie, and you can't say that much about Hollywood blockbusters these days.

Matt: Plot is also not super important here, and if that causes your bowels to loosen then you've clearly never seen a Godzilla movie before. What makes these movies work is atmosphere, tension, special effects, and badass monsters duking it out over random cities. That's the formula! I'd say it was pretty much nailed here. Sure, there are caveats although they're very minor. I don't think the characters in general were amazing or terribly memorable but that doesn't bother me. If it bothers you then, oh well, different strokes, I guess? I'm content. Actually, more than that--I'm satisfied. If I smoked, I'd light up right now. Ahhhhh....

Jason: I concur Matt. The only thing that would make this flick better is if Blue Oyster Cult's Godzilla played over the end credits. It's a Good, and then some. From both of us.
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