Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Midweek Movie Madness: Godzilla in Review

*I was invited to a screening for this movie in exchange for my review all thoughts and opinions are my own.


On Wednesday I took my new shoes and the husband out for a mid-week date night for a media screening of the new Godzilla movie which opened nation wide this past Friday.
When I mentioned the opportunity to my husband he was all about it and when I asked my mother in law to baby sit she said the Godzilla movies were her favorites which was kind of a surprise to me. Who knew?
As someone who's never really seen a Godzilla movie before in it's entirety I was looking forward to it but honestly didn't knwo what to expect as I purposely stayed away from previews and any press about it. I have vague memories of my mother watching Godzilla vs. Mothra as a young child and thinking it was incredibly cheesy and I kind of remember that there was a remake done a few years back but I never saw it. So I went in with an open mind and no expectations.
The screening was held at TCL Theatre in Hollywood (formerly Grauman's Chinese Theatre) and even though I'm a California native I got a little excited about the idea of being in Hollywood in the middle of the week sans kids. Because we were a little early we found amazing seats in the middle of the exquisite theater and were quite excited to learn that the screening was at the IMAX and in 3D. In my opinion that was the best way to view this movie.



What intrigued me most was that the human element was more than just them running and screaming to get out of the way. My husband and I both enjoyed the fact that there was a story behind all the action and epic fight scenes. The main character, Ford, did seem to always be in the path of these monstrous creatures, clearly by the writers design but for me, I felt that it gave the story line a more human interest to be invested in rather than just the usual "how do we stop these creatures from wreaking havoc on civilization?" that the franchise has been known for.  We enjoyed that the back story was quite plausible and we didn't have to stretch our imaginations too far to understand how these MUTO (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism) creatures came to be. At one point I was actively talking to the screen (sorry movie neighbors) as I was simply in awe of how these people continued to be in harm's way and (for the majority) seemed to come away unscathed. I know some will say that the characters seemed superfluous and that their main purpose was to look scared as they were placed in the path of destruction but I found that to be what I liked about the movie. While perhaps they could have been more developed and emoting better, their personal struggle to reunite was what made me relate to their story and you better believe there were tears stinging my eyes once they were reunited. (spoiler) 



The special effects were fantastic and the fact that we saw it in 3D on the IMAX added to the fun and excitement. Were there things that could have been done better? Sure. Could the dialogue and characters have been more developed? Absolutely. But it's a MONSTER movie. An Oscar nomination is clearly not in the cards but the cinematography was beautiful. One of my favorite scenes was toward the final fight scene as a company of soldiers halo jumps out of a plane and you see their red flares cutting through the smog and ash filled sky of San Francisco while the tag team battle between Godzilla and the MUTO's rages on below. To say that it is a powerful sequence doesn't seem to do it justice but it is. The background music adds to the hauntingly beautiful descent and gears the audience up for what is sure to be the movie's climax.  And when we finally get that epic goose-bump inducing roar and radioactive fire breath you can't help but cheer and be in awe of the titular lizard.
Overall, it was an fun evening out and the fact that the movie was actually entertaining added to our experience.








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