Starring: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Ken Watanabe, Elizabeth Olsen, Sally Hawkins, Carson Bolde, David Strathairn, Bryan Cranston, Juliette Binoche.
A mine in the Philippine jungle collapses, exposing the remains of two seemingly fossilised and highly radioactive creatures.
One of the monsters hatches and runs amok, and despite the best efforts of Dr Ishiro Serizawa (Ken Watanabe) and his colleague Dr Vivienne Graham (Sally Hawkins), its mate also escapes confinement.
US Navy Admiral William Stenz (David Strathairn) co-ordinates the response and sends his men into battle including Lieutenant Ford Brody (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), whose parents (Bryan Cranston, Juliette Binoche) worked at the Janjira nuclear plant, where one creature began its rampage.
When military might fails to halt the devastation, a monstrous alpha predator emerges from the deep to save mankind... Godzilla is a bombastic resurrection of cinema’s iconic reptile, harking back to Ishiro Honda’s groundbreaking 1954 film Gojira.
Gareth Edwards’ picture opens with a helicopter ride that could have been airlifted from Jurassic Park and continues with the Spielbergean nods including theme park ride-style action sequences and children in peril. It is a technically accomplished hunk of large-scale monster-mashing. You can see every cent of the rumoured 160 million dollar budget and Edwards makes good use of the 3D format, available exclusively on Blu-ray, by reflecting carnage in mirrors and glass.
Human emotions are less polished. Taylor-Johnson is a bland all-American hero and heavyweights Cranston and Binoche don’t have sufficient screen time. Obi-Wan Watanabe is reduced to philosophising about humanity’s failings (“The arrogance of man is thinking nature is in our control, and not the other way round”) and sounding the bell on a final round showdown between Godzilla and his adversaries.