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Author Topic: Shin Gojira
The Rev.
Initiate of Jabootu
Posts: 44
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Post Shin Gojira
on: October 12, 2016, 22:37
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Godzilla's back. Duh.

Just some notes, as spoiler-free as possible for those who haven't had a chance to see it.

For the first time in Toho's history, we have a Godzilla movie that is not connected to the original in any way, story-wise. Several of Ifukube's pieces for it are used at appropriate times, which is a nice touch, but also a bit at odds with the modern musical pieces created for the movie (with the main one being the notable exception). There are also a couple of nods to a few of the older movies throughout.

The movie is primarily about Japanese bureaucracy struggling to deal with the walking disaster that is Godzilla. Some bitter feelings towards America for the atomic bombings and their regular role as Earth's police force are expressed by characters at different points, as well. It is definitely a human-driven story, but I found the characters compelling enough to go along for the ride (a problem I had with the American one from 2014, Bryan Cranston notwithstanding). It does feel like it's dragging at times, as orders are repeated up and down the chain of command, but for the most part I was with it. There are three big Godzilla setpieces, and they're quite reminiscent of the original's: for the first one Godzilla mostly wanders around, then leaves; the second is where the big destruction comes in; and the third is mankind's last hope to destroy the beast. All are well-done. I'm torn on the second or third being my favorite; the second has some amazing moments, but the plan used to attempt to destroy Godzilla is really presented in an exciting fashion.

Godzilla's origin and creation are unlike any previously given (its creation was a bit too close to that of the monsters in The Horror of Party Beach for my comfort). There are some surprises in store with its appearance and powers, which were not revealed in the trailers, and for which I'm thankful because they're definitely something to see cold. The damage it wreaks on Tokyo is massive; I don't think Godzilla's been this destructive since the original. We also have another first, in that his oral ray is purple, rather than the original whitish mist, the well-known blue, or the more modern red. While the entirely CGI Godzilla is as obvious as CGI usually is, it's still nicely done. The mixing of CGI and suit, however, is quite good, and is a trend I'd like to see continued for future Godzilla movies. A surprising amount of the destruction was done with practical effects, always a plus for me.

Overall, I enjoyed it quite a bit. I'd say it's the best one since the '90s, with the exception of GMK, and I preferred it to the American one as well, although I did like that one fine. If you see it, you'll need to be quick with the reading, because the subtitles can come fairly quickly, especially when there are two sets, top and bottom. The top gives names and positions of characters, as well as locations, and can generally be ignored in favor of the dialogue at the bottom, which may help.

I'm a happy kaiju fan.

Gamera977
Minion of Jabootu
Posts: 192
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Post Re: Shin Gojira
on: October 13, 2016, 11:44
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Thanks Rev. for the low-down. I'm going to have to check this out when I get the chance.

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