Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019)

Director: Michael Dougherty

Writer: Michael Dougherty, Zach Shields (Screenplay) Michael Dougherty, Max Borenstein, Zach Shields (Story)

Starring: Kyle Chandler, Vera Farmiga, Millie Bobby Brown, Ken Watanabe, Ziyi Zhang, Bradley Whitford, Sally Hawkins, Charles Dance

 

Plot: The crypto-zoological agency Monarch faces off against a battery of god-sized monsters, including the mighty Godzilla, who collides with Mothra, Rodan, and his ultimate nemesis, the three-headed King Ghidorah.


Tagline – Long Live The King

Runtime: 2 Hours 11 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Visually Beautiful

 

Story: Godzilla: King of the Monsters starts in the aftermath of the events in San Francisco in 2014, The Russell family is torn apart with the Godzilla attack, with parents Mark (Chandler) and Emma (Farmiga) losing a child, with only Madison (Brown) left in their family, in the years past they have gone their separate ways and the Monarch agency has continue to face consequences for the Godzilla attack.

Emma does work in one of the secret Monarch facilities where they are trying to hatch and contain the titans of the Earth, when the facility comes under attack by eco-terrorist Jonah Alan (Dance) who wants to take a device which could communicate with the Titans of the world.

With this attack Godzilla reappears from his years of hiding and Mark gets called in by Monarch to help the locate his ex-wife and daughter, Monarch needs to plan as the idea is to release all the Titans into the world, with King Ghidorah challenging Godzilla for the title of King of the Monsters.

 

Thoughts on Godzilla: King of the Monsters

 

Characters – Godzilla is the king of the monsters, he will only attack when he is attacked, which sees Monarch watching over him, when his position is put at risk he heads of to eliminate the threat in King Ghidorah, we know Godzilla will fight to the death and here we learn more about the mystic of Godzilla and what gives him all his strength. King Ghidorah is the latest discovery in the world of Titans, he is a three—headed dragon in the historic likeness of the Hydra with the head having the ability to regrow. He wants control over the world using his power to control the Titans to bring the destruction. Mark is a crypto-zoologist that has been hiding from the world after the Godzilla incident, he has become distant from his daughter because of this, which has seen him filming wolves understanding predatory nature. After Madison and Emma are taken, he gets recruited by Monarch to help relocate them using his knowledge of dealing with predators, even though his stance is to kill all Titans. Emma has remained working for Monarch, she has created a device which could communicate with the Titans, one she uses to control Mothra. She gets kidnapped with her creation being the weapon which could control and release all the Titans to the world. Madison is the daughter of the two scientists, she lives with her mother, not having any communication with her father, she gets to witness the great spectacle in person and learn what caused the drift between her parents. Dr Serizawa is one of the few returning characters that still believes that Godzilla is here for good, he will protect him from any attack, he works with the Monarch team to end the terror that has come to the Earth. Barnes is the lead soldier, he seems like he is mostly a replacement for the soldier in the last film, which doesn’t need too much other than military behaviour. Dr Graham is back working with Dr Serizawa to protect Godzilla from the world that wants destruction. Jonah Alan is the eco-terrorist that has been trying to end the Titan control for years, this attest attack is the one that will unleashing them on the world.

PerformancesKyle Chandler steps into the leading role in this outing, he brings us a character with a much more interesting backstory to why he is here and we want to support him making up for his errors. Vera Farmiga is wonderful to watch, we believe her decisions through the film which will give her time to shine. Millie Bobby Brown does everything asked of for a teenage character, we see how she must learn to grow up through the events in the film. Ken Watanabe is always an actor you can sit and watch talk science, he brings the strongest human performance in the film. O’Shea Jackson Jr, Sally Hawkins and Charles Dance complete the main cast all bringing everything to the role to make the film feel believable.

StoryThe story here sees how Monarch comes under attack with the hidden Titans of the world being released into the world, Godzilla must step up to regain control after King Ghidorah tries to take his throne, we see how the human side of the Titan outbreak starts to figure out a way to stop the destruction. When it comes to the story we need to break this down, first the human side of the story which does have a focus on grief of losing somebody in a disaster will go in different direction to search for help. The scientific side of the film shows just how the people in the film work together to figure out how to get through the events of the film. when it comes to the monster side of the film we are seeing the battle for control between Godzilla and King Ghidorah along with the fellow Titans choosing a side when it comes to the battle for control. We only really want to see the monster destruction which is huge, but it is interesting to look into the history of Godzilla and just where he has come from.

Action/Adventure/Fantasy/Sci-FiThe action in the film is truly brilliant, we have mega destruction scenes which show the strengths of each of the Titans and what they could do to the world if they come here looking for their own control. The fight sequences are just beautiful to watch too which goes on to show just how much was put into showing the monsters (which was one of the complained sides of the last Godzilla). The adventure takes our characters across the world to each different facility which will show us how the Titans will suit the location they are coming from. The fantasy does show us just how big the monsters could be, they start to play into the history of the world, teasing they could have been real. The sci-fi side of the film plays into the idea of the giant monsters that are here, fighting for power, we do have interesting military devices which seem like they are from the future too.

SettingsThe film uses the settings to show us the different locations the Titans are around the world, be it China, Mexico or Antarctica, each Titans comes from the environment which would suit them.

Special EffectsThe effects in the film are truly breath-taking, the Titans look flawless, the battles outstanding and the wide shots of the Titans being the best scenes of the year.


Scene of the Movie –
Mothra hatching, it is just beautiful.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Last minute saves.

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the most beautiful monster movies you will ever see, it has some of the most beautiful shots ever put to film and giving everything you want from a giant monster movie, where they just fight to the death.

 

Overall: Beautiful Monster movie.

Rating

 

 

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Kong: Skull Island (2017)

Director: Jordan Vogt-Roberts

Writer: Dan Gilroy, Max Borenstein, Derek Connolly (Screenplay) John Gatins (Story)

Starring: Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L Jackson, Brie Larson, John C Reilly, John Goodman, Corey Hawkins, John Ortiz, Tian Jing, Toby Kebbell, Jason Mitchell

 

Plot: A team of scientists explore an uncharted island in the Pacific, venturing into the domain of the mighty Kong, and must fight to escape a primal Eden.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Mindless Monster Mayhem

 

Story: Kong: Skull Island starts as we see an instant introduction to Kong during World War II, move forward to 1973 Bill Randa (Goodman) want to lead an expedition to the mysterious island in the Pacific Ocean, one that has only just been discovered by satellite images. Joined by his assistant Brooks (Hawkins) and a mapping team Randa puts together a unit to cover him if the stories are true.

The team includes tracker James Conrad (Hiddleston), photographer Mason Weaver (Larson), San (Jing) and army unit led by Preston Packard (Jackson). Upon arrive on the island Kong destroys all the helicopter killing half the unit, with the scientists looking for a way off the island and Packard out for revenge the two battle within as they face enemies they had never imagined including the monstrous Kong.

 

Thoughts on Kong: Skull Island

 

Characters/PerformanceConrad is a British tracker who we rarely see track, Weaver is a photographer who clashes with Packard a lot on the morale side of her job post-Vietnam, she isn’t just the damsel in distress though. Packard is a war-hero who I believe wasn’t a hero in war, he wants one more chance to go into a battle before returning home, as the film unfolds he does feel very similar to Pete Postlethwaite character in Jurassic Park 2. Bill knows more than he lets on but could be considered a businessman villain. Hank steals most of the scenes here, he is the former WWII pilot who has been stuck on the island for 28 years. Kong is a character all to his own, destroying anything that gets in his way while also showing the most emotion of any character in the film. we also have scientists who are forgettable, and soldiers who are giving basic banter to work with.

Performance wise, Hiddleston does struggling to make much of the poorly written character, Larson starts well but again her character is written weakly, Jackson does what Jackson does well without being his best, Goodman also doesn’t reach his potential while Reilly knows how to steal a movie with limited scenes. Most of the stars all struggle with the same problem, their characters are written very weakly.

StoryThe story here is fine, I liked that is wasn’t the same as the 30’s era trying to bring Kong back to New York, this is just a surveillance job turned race against time to survive. So, this is The Lost World with King Kong in the end. There isn’t too much to say good about the story because I found myself confused a lot, we had ONE ship with about SIX helicopters on it and sudden when they reach Skull Island there is about TWENTY helicopters, the same goes for the number of soldiers, one minute we have the FOUR we know and then when we need people to die there suddenly seems to be another group of disposable ones. These inconsistent annoyed me most.

Action/Adventure/FantasyThe action is very big and sure you can switch off and enjoy it all, the adventure is in the new world unseen and comes off fine throughout, the fantasy comes from battle what should be the impossible.

SettingsI did like that we kept all the action upon Skull Island, I feel this is important to creating the bigger universe they want to.

Special EffectsI also think the special effects are brilliant through the whole film and could barely tell the different between what is real or not.

Final ThoughtsThis is big bad and fun but I feel the character development comes off pointless in places because all we get is a sudden death to a character that doesn’t make sense or it is an unknown character killed to save ones we have got to know.

 

Overall: This will go down in the fun but not great action set piece.

Rating

 

 

Godzilla (2014)

logoDirector: Gareth Edwards

Writer: Max Borenstein (Screenplay) Dave Callaham (Story)

Starring: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Bryan Cranston, Ken Watanabe, Carson Bolde, Sally Hawkins, Juliette Binoche, David Strathain

 

Plot: The world’s most famous monster is pitted against malevolent creatures who, bolstered by humanity’s scientific arrogance, threaten our very existence.

 

Verdict: Great Monster Movie

 

Story: We start by follow a group investigating a collapse at a mine leading us to see how something big was there. Next we meet our hero who works at a nuclear power plant who has worries about seismic activity around the plant and while a team investigate the power plant has a breech leading to his wife dying. Fast forward 15 years and he is still trying to figure out what caused it, while his son has joined the armed forces and has a family of his own. After our hero gets arrested his son has to fly to Japan to bail him out and in the end joins the investigation to what caused the evacuation. Our hero gets bought into what was once his place of work only to discover that it has been taken over where a creature breaks out of its hiding causing the military to come in to try and stop it. They have to stop the Muto creature before it causes more damage around the world. The powers that be in the military have to let the battle between the creatures and Godzilla happen before it is too late.godzilla

Godzilla is one of those all-time classic monster movies and it is always been down to the beliefs in Japanese culture and after the 1998 film we never saw even a mention of those said beliefs. This time we go back to square one and focus on the idea that Godzilla could well be the saviour of the human race against other monsters. The basic film plays out very easily to follow adds in plenty of conspiracy theories ideas which keep things ready for any potential sequels. The only thing that really annoyed me was the fact Ford just happened to always seemed to be in the right, well in his case wrong place at the time to be involved with the next mission without actually being on active duty. In the end it is a very good story that will be easy to follow for all the fans and pays a lot of respect to the source material. (9/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Aaron Taylor-Johnson: Ford Brody son of Joe who has grown up to start his own family as well as being a solider, he gets caught up in the middle of his father’s theories and has to face off against both the creatures while trying to get back to his family. He ends up getting caught up in every single mission against the creatures. Aaron does a good job but ends up looking like a very standard solider instead of an over the top action hero, which was good. (8/10)

 ford

Bryan Cranston: Joe Brody seismic expert working on a nuclear power plant, who is trying to investigate why a seemingly identical activity happening but after his wife is killed during the attack he becomes a conspiracy nut. He ends up being correct about what is being hidden and helps offering some of the answers to the government’s problems. Bryan does a good job in the role but I feel we could have seen a lot more from his character. (8/10)

joe

Elizabeth Olsen: Elle Brody wife of Ford who has spends the first half of the film looking after their child while Ford is trying to get back home. She does a good job but really doesn’t end up doing anything to help the story only offers motivation for Ford. (7/10)

 

Ken Watanabe: Dr Serizawa the man trying to understand the creatures and after years of asking questions he might final understand what is happening, and has to race to stop them spreading all while believing that Godzilla will stop the other creatures. Ken does a good job but ends up coming off as a stereotypical character. (7/10)

 dr

Sally Hawkins: Vivienne Graham assistant who tries to help protect the people from what is happening but it is up to her and Dr Serizawa to get the message across to the trigger happy Americans. Sally does a good job in the supporting role but fails to really make an impact. (7/10)

 vivine

Support Cast: Each member of the supporting cast adds to the story as it unfolds giving information to our main characters.

 

Director Review: Gareth Edwards – Gareth shows why he got picked to direct this by showing his brilliance at masking the idea of monsters instead of just having over the top battles. (9/10)

 

Action: Plenty of action going on during the film even with a lot only showing the aftermath we have plenty to enjoy too. (10/10)

Thriller: Keeps you guessing on what will happen and where it will happen next. (9/10)

Settings: Each setting selected adds to the story as we see the destruction being created by the creatures. (10/10)
Special Effects
: Brilliant special effects used to create the creatures and the destruction made. (10/10)

Suggestion: This is one of the block buster that has to be watched because it is near perfect for a modern monster movie. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Godzilla final fight.

Worst Part: The very end is a bit cheesy.

Action Scene Of The Film: Final fight.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: It has one being talked about.

Opening Credits Rating: The opening credits fill us with backstory on how the nuclear tests had been causing mutation. All good for helping explain the idea of how a ‘Godzilla’ like creature could appear. (10/10)

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: I would expect it to get some Special Effects nominations.

Box Office: $525 Million

Budget: $160 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 3 Minutes

Tagline: The king arrives

Trivia: Juliette Binoche, Bryan Cranston, Sally Hawkins, David Strathairn, Ken Watanabe,Elizabeth Olsen, and Aaron Taylor-Johnson were all Gareth Edwards’s first choice for their respective roles. According to Hawkins, “He comes from the performance first, rather than how it looks. I never expected I would be cast in a film like this – and that’s all thanks to Gareth. His cast is really unusual and interesting and people you wouldn’t normally see in this type of film, and I hope it makes for a different type of monster film.”

 

Overall: Monster Movie That Salutes Its Source Material

Rating 90