ACTION; 2hr 3min
STARRING: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Bryan Cranston
On the run: Olsen
Godzilla is 60 but still huge, Ishirô Honda’s 1954 trailblazer Gojira having spawned rejigs across the movie, TV, comics and vid-games boards. So bring on the giant reptile!
Director Gareth Edwards goes for it, with a catastrophic quake in Japan. Fifteen years later, Ford Brody (a blah Taylor-Johnson), who was a child when his scientist mother (Juliette Binoche) was killed in that radioactive meltdown, is a US Navy man with a wife (Olsen) and son. Still in Japan, Ford’s engineer father (Cranston) has become a fever-eyed zealot convinced that whatever caused his wife’s death hasn’t gone away.
Not as such! When two ginormous, radiation-guzzling MUTOs — Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism to you — get their lead-footed groove on, they’re hellacious scenery-shredders. Aloha, Honolulu! So long, Las Vegas! You can’t blame the stars for looking careworn — mostly convincingly, to their credit, although in disasterthon lore, the characters and pre-digested mass mayhem primarily exist to serve the wowee effects. Pro forma, these monsters are a thumping freak show, and the climactic MUTOs-Godzilla stoush is horrific. This is what the end of the world could look like: primal rage run amok in a ruined city.