I remember the beginning of the summer in 1998 very well. I remember that the big box office smash Armageddon was set to release in July and I was very excited to see it after my bout with summer school had ended. I also recall Matthew Broderick’s Godzilla helping to kick off the sizzling summer box office in late May and just how disappointing of a movie it was. Back then, it was considered to be one of the most expensive movies around and going in, you knew it was going to be heavy with CGI and light on the story and you were fine with it. 2014’s Godzilla delivered a tad bit more of a story but incredibly less action. It was pretty boring. Fast forward to 2019 and the movie going audience is treated to Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Naturally, my expectations were pretty low because of the bar the 1998 offering set. Was the story great? No. Were the special effects unlike anything you’ve ever seen before? No. Was it at least a decent entertaining summer blockbuster type movie you can enjoy some free air conditioning to? Yes.
Since Godzilla: King of the Monsters is light on story, all you really need to know about it is that there is a device called the ORCA made by an organization called Monarch. The ORCA can be used to control and communicate with Godzilla and the other monsters, or titans. It’s the simple question of whose hands the ORCA should be in and why. One faction wants the ORCA to start a clean slate for humanity. The other faction wants to keep the world as it is, with the titans not really bothering mankind. Godzilla comes into play when he collides with the other titans either under the control of the ORCA or not. One family, torn within Monarch, actually controls the ORCA and the fate of humanity is sort of in their hands! Michael Dougherty directs the 132 minute titan battle while Kyle Chandler, Verga Farmiga, and Millie Bobby Brown give decent performances. Ken Watanabe reprises his role of Dr. Ishiro Serizawa from 2014’s offering of Godzilla as well. Given the material the actors had to work with, it was decent. The main focus is naturally on the larger than life (and screen) titans that battle for long periods of time. That is really what the audience is paying to see and the movie does deliver.
Throughout the movie you will see Godzilla battle with Mothra, Rodan and a few other monsters within the Godzilla “monsterverse.” The special effects are pretty amazing and I’d say 95% of the movie used CGI in one shot or the other. The look of the movie was quite cool with a very cold blue “lens” put on the camera in the opening of the movie. It was reminiscent of Terminator 2. Godzilla: King of the Monsters also delivered some pretty cool cinematography. The many majestic shots of the various monsters were quite breathtaking on a massive screen paired with a loud rockin sound system in the theater. Godzilla’s roar is pretty powerful.
Being that I am not the biggest fan of “kaiju” movies, the movie felt a little long to me but I can honestly say that I was entertained for the most part. Godzilla: King of the Monsters is a good movie to go see to escape the summer heat for about two hours. While, this version of Godzilla will not be one of the biggest summer movies of 2019, chances are you and a friend will be entertained by the CGI violence on screen while you munch on some popcorn!