In the last few months of the year, studios often release a lot of the films they want critics to vote on for awards consideration. There have been times I’ve seen four screenings in one day. The other day we had four screenings. Only one of them was in the morning, so I had to pick one of three movies to see that night. When a friend sent me an email about Godzilla, it helped make my decision easier. Here’s the email exchange between David Novin and myself, which eventually leads to him reviewing the movie for me.
DAVID: Do you like Godzilla?
JOSH: Yeah. It’s my favorite Blue Oyster Cult song. Well, that and Cities on Flame (with rock n roll).
DAVID: Don’t be a dumb ass. You know what Godzilla I mean.
JOSH: Well, when I was a little kid in the ‘70s I’d watch it on TV. It was cheesy, but I liked it. I’m not looking forward to the film version.
DAVID: Really? I’d kind of like to see it.
JOSH: They’re screening it the same night as Ma, so I’m going to see that instead. If you want to go to Godzilla you can. Just tell me how it is and we’ll discuss it. I’ll put that up as my “review.”
[one week later]
JOSH: Now, I don’t remember the Godzilla movie from a few years back, but I don’t think I cared for it. How does this one stand up to that, and…the suspense is killing me. Is Mothra in this?
DAVID: Godzilla from 2014, was, to me, a surprisingly enjoyable movie. It subverted what you were expecting and was an enjoyable watch. Because you’re nobody, until somebody creates an expanded universe for you, Godzilla’s second movie Kong: Skull Island expanded the “Monsterverse.” If “King of the Monsters” is any indication of the direction we’re heading. Please, dear baby Jesus, destroy this planet before we do. Oh wait, we already are. According to the HEAVY HANDED Environmental danger agenda this movie shoved down my throat, our only salvation is to unleash hell on earth, wipe out the problem and find balance with the Titans. If this sounds familiar to you, its because it’s the EXACT SAME EFFING PLAN THAT THANOS HAD IN THE AVENGERS!!!
JOSH: That’s funny because, I saw the latest zombie movie at a screening this morning, and they also wanted to shove some environmental dangers about fracking down our throats and how we’re ruining the planet.
DAVID: This Godzilla movie was bad. So, so, so bad. Like, I’m angry that I went to see it bad. Like I’ve made an appointment in the AM for a lobotomy to remove the memory of this movie from my mind bad. I’d rather drool into a cup for the rest of my days, then remember this un-flushed turd longer than I need to.
JOSH: Having a bad movie erased from your mind…is something all critics wish they could do. Sort of like something out of Eternal Sunshine for the Spotless Mind.
DAVID: But back to your question…yes, Mothra is in it. As is Ghidorah and Rodan. She is there as a “partner” to Godzilla. Yes, I said “she” – she was the “Queen of the Monsters” to Godzilla’s “King of the Monsters”
Did I mention this movie is dumb?
JOSH: Oh yeah, I completely forgot about Rodan. Now Ghidorah…I had never heard of. Thought that was something I caught back in college. Okay, so…I’m getting the feeling from your last email that you didn’t care for the movie. Well, were the special effects at least decent? And, did Godzilla still have that scream sound the way it always has? I always dug that.
DAVID: Ghidorah was Godzilla’s arch nemesis from back in the day, a 3-headed dragon that could regenerate a lost limb or head. Not a Hydra, but similar. Also, in this movie, it was an alien for some fu**ing reason. I’m gonna throw a dart and guess…lazy writing. The special effects, when you could see them, were really well done; if you like watching identical scaled monsters fight inside a paint shaker for 2hrs and 12 minutes. Godzilla’s scream/roar was still present…and it was awesome. I’ll give it that.
The plot is based around a scientist creating a device called “The Orca” that can create an audio frequency that makes the monsters think that they’re in the presence of an Alpha, and become docile. But it can also be used to send aggressive tones to make the monsters go crazy. The scientist wants to “wake up” the titans and restore balance to the planet, but something goes wrong because Ghidorah is a fu**ing alien and doesn’t always have to listen to “the Orca”. Only Godzilla can help us. I keep putting it in quotes because every character in the movie said “The Orca” at least once, to try and drive home how amazing it supposedly was. It was SO important, that the climax of the movie involves someone walking into an empty room and unplugging it, and and putting it in a backpack to steal. On a tangent, I love when you can recognize normal/real world items used in prop building in movies. “The Orca” was plugged in using an XLR Microphone cable. It made me laugh out loud in the theater. This was important though, because they had to plug it into the PA system at Fenway Park in Boston to broadcast it loud enough to be heard in Washington D.C.
JOSH: I better not find out later you made up the Fenway Park thing just because you’re from Boston and love the Sox.
DAVID: I did mention this movie was dumb, right?
JOSH: You sir, have mentioned the movie is dumb, but I still have to assign it a number of stars. And you can throw in any last rant you want about the movie when you give it a final grade.
DAVID: I feel bad for every actor in this movie. An amazing cast with Kyle Chandler from Friday Night Lights, Vera Farmiga and Millie Bobby Brown, Eleven from Stranger Things. I felt the worst for her. She’s an amazing young actress who did nothing in this movie except cry and scream. Bradley Whitford steals every scene he’s in though, and he’s probably the only actor that leaves this movie unscathed. Poor Ken Watanabe. You could tell he wanted this movie to mean something, but in the end, it doesn’t. I’ll end it with this. My friend and I spent the entire movie just mocking it, to the point that we were at a loss for words and eventually just flipped off the screen. I wish I had a bigger middle finger to give it. THE MOVIE WAS DUMB!
½ a star for Godzilla’s roar.