Critics' Corner: Godzilla

"Godzilla" 2014 is without question the best looking Godzilla movie ever. It smashes the 1998 Roland Emmerich "Godzilla" like a Toyota under the foot of the skyscraper monster. Comparing it to its Japanese predecessors that made the character iconic is sort of pointless. "Mothra Vs. Godzilla" is classic monster movie heaven. Godzilla's battles with Ghidorah and Destoroyah are irreplaceable in their purely enjoyable cheesiness. They are quite simply loved for that very cheesiness. "Godzilla" 2014 tossed the cheesiness away and went for the reality gusto. So, you either want cheese with your giant nuclear waste created lizard, or you do not.

There is absolutely nothing cheesy about "Godzilla" 2014 unless you consider the attempts to make personal connections amid all the destruction, cheesy. Somehow those attempts sort of fell flat despite the fact that some very capable actors were trying to make those connections. Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) plays Joe Brody who is a nuclear physicist who has been tracking the slowly building anomaly, unsure of what he is tracking. Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Kick Ass) plays his son, Lieutenant Ford Brody, who doesn't know what to think of his father until his fathers predictions start gaining merit. Elizabeth Olsen, the younger sister of Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, plays Elle Brody; Ford's wife who is trying to stay alive, find Ford and save lives while dodging falling buildings.

Unfortunately, there is nothing complicated or extremely interesting about anything the humans do in this film, which makes the "Cloverfield"-like cutaways from the true star of the film, Godzilla, a little disappointing. For that matter, Godzilla's storyline isn't all that complicated either, but many of the human elements of the film serve absolutely zero purpose other than to show off the money and effects they spent on making Godzilla look absolutely breath-taking. That, rightfully so, is the saving grace of the film. The scenes of epic destruction and people adapting to a crumbling environment are mind-blowing.

To think that you're going to see "Godzilla" in order to be affected with dramatic stories is unrealistic, but the thing is, the creators tried. "Godzilla" is an old-school monster film with new-school technology and effects. Despite its problems, Godzilla entertains. The films that "Godzilla" was founded upon weren't anything that challenged the brain either. Once you understand that and understand that the creators at least tried to make it something more, you should enjoy what it is; a good old fashion monster slug-fest.