Godzilla is a high budget and modern take on one of cinema’s classic monsters. Between the monster’s debut in the 1950s and now, there have been a crazy number of Godzilla films to hit both Japanese and Western cinemas. The movie (which is available as a digital download or stream) feels like both another attempt to reboot the franchise in the West, as well as fill seats with star power and CGI action. With a star-studded cast and a huge budget for destruction, Godzilla succeeds in many places but falls short in some key areas.
How to Stream or Download Godzilla
To stream or to download the movie simply click on the Download button to be found at the end of the review. The movie is available in several languages but the much sought Hindi and Tamil might not be supported.
The Film Review
Directed by Gareth Edwards, this 30th Godzilla film is a slightly grounded family drama, with a smattering of mystery and some well-deserved monster action. The film follows Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston) and his son Ford (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), investigating a shady government conspiracy. Haunted by his wife’s accidental death 15 years prior, Joe recruits his recently returned military son into his investigation.
The familial drama of Godzilla does a decent job making the stakes feel high and the story realistic. Despite the giant monsters that pop up, the film feels very true to life in relation to human nature. When all hell breaks loose, as it should in a Godzilla film, you have a decent basis of empathy for those who find themselves in harm’s way.
That said, for a film called Godzilla, the movie is pretty sparse on the giant creature. We get glimpses and peeks of Godzilla as the film progresses, but generally speaking, our favorite giant lizard is pretty absent for most of the film. Towards the end of the movie, there a few fantastic action scenes and creature fights, but not as many as you would expect. In that way, Godzilla ends up feeling more like a drama with some action elements than a full-blown monster movie.
This is perhaps the greatest fault of the film. Despite positive performances from the cast, the movie feels a bit long-winded and slow paced. When the action gets going, it’s an absolute treat, but the action doesn’t last long.
The film doubles down on its military sub-plot instead of its action, and that can make the first half of the film a slog. The characters are performed well by most of the cast, including a standout performance from Bryan Cranston. The supporting cast is decent as well, offering solid emotion and line delivery. Ken Watanabe performs well in the role of Dr. Ishiro Serizawa, and Elizabeth Olsen provides some emotional depth as Ford’s wife, Elle.
There are entertaining scenes along the way, but the movie is ultimately a slow burn. It works in some areas but fails in others. As far as Godzilla films go, this one is much better than other modern attempts.
However, it leaves a bit to be desired in terms of classic Godzilla action. When the giant lizard does make his appearance, you’ll have a blast. The rest of the plot is serviceable but plays itself a bit too seriously. You’ll most likely enjoy the movie for what it is, but be sure to watch with tempered expectations.