GODZILLA (2014)

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Godzilla vs M.U.T.O.

Gojira, saviour of the world is back, and the main thing that comes to mind when watching this is that it may not be possible for a human to direct a Godzilla film with all the elements of a quality movie included.

The logistics of the monster effects alone are huge and consequently anything remotely human in story will pale in comparison.
Can it be done?

What works is the fighting. Gojira vs any supermonster. Too. Much. Fun.

How is this not gonna make you laugh? There’s just not enough of the big guy in this latest outing.

This is more like it:

Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen try their best with the love story element that some genius thought you must have in order to make the film accessible to the masses.
It’s a Godzilla film, FFS!
Bryan Cranston and Juliette Binoche are brought in to add gravitas in order to make it into a serious film.
It’s a Godzilla film, FFS!
Ken Watanabe and Sally Hawkins mug and over-act for the camera as if they were actually in a Toho Godzilla film.
But it doesn’t work as only a few of the actors seem to know what kind of film they are in.
FFS. IT’S A GODZILLA FILM, PEOPLE!!!

David Strathairn, on the other hand, is right on the money with his performance and it really shows you that if you have chops it makes not one iota of difference what kind of film you are in, you will always bring interesting work to the table.
On a smaller note it was nice to see Victor Rasuk (How to Make it in America) getting a squeeze, playing a soldier.

Look, this film has many problems, wtf is happening right now, where are we, do we care, where is Gojira? Ah, there he is. Go Gojira, save us.

There was potential for making a semi-decent movie here but it just doesn’t come together. There is a fantastic sequence in a supposed radio-active area early on that recalls the world of the game ‘The Last of Us’ and there are some story elements that show promise but fizzle out too early. 

For all the money spent on the monster effects the effect may be not much more impressive than the much cheaper option of man-in-suit.

Gareth Davies who directed the brilliant Monsters must have been overwhelmed by the massive budget but manages to retain the Toho style of the previous Godzilla films from Japan; they are not best known for their incredible story telling or acting, merely the WWF antics of Gojira (and humanities’) foes.

Much has been made about the Halo jump, featuring heavily in the trailer and on many posters, it was so filled with potential but, without spoiling anything, when it comes in the film it does not come close to delivering the excitement it promises.
Ultimately, this film will make a LOT of money and there will be a sequel and I’ll probably go see but it is by no means a great piece of cinema, only the few battle sequences will definitely satisfy the B-movie fans of old.

Maybe we’ll see Godzuki in the sequel.
One can but hope.

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A generous 3/5.

BUY THE BLU-RAY DVD HERE

DOWNLOAD THE FILM ON iTUNES HERE

BLUE JASMINE (2013)

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Cate Blanchett is very good. She clearly is an actress of depth and intelligence.

However, if the character she is playing is an absolute nut case, do I want to spend 90 minutes or so with her? Not really.

Woody Allen has been hit/miss since 1994 with Bullets over Broadway.
There have been some exceptional films in the meantime but also a bunch of duds.
This has been lauded by critics and commercialists alike. I don’t get it.
It lacks charm, which the Woodster usually serves up in droves.

Everybody is great in it, always a pleasure to see Bobby Cannavale as well as Peter Sarsgaard, and Sally Hawkins is lovely as Jasmine’s sister. Being an actor who gets to be in a Woody Allen film is probably one of the highlights of your career, so most would jump at the chance.

I didn’t emotionally connect with any of the characters, but maybe this was the point.

Maybe the Woodster is making a comment on the vapidity and vacuity that is so prevalent in today’s society. “This is where you’re heading, materialistic and obsessed with wild superficial imaginings” and if so there is a redemptive quality about the film.
But if that is the case then this is one of his bleaker films.

Cate Blanchett’s Jasmine is just plain unhappily; looking for salvation in all the wrong places. Misguided and mentally programmed to love the ‘stuff’ and ‘status’ of life and feeling that she is a failure without it.

Critics are hailing it a great film and I just don’t get it.
I like Woody Allen but I will wait for the next decent one to come out.

3/5

BUY THE BLU-RAY DVD HERE

DOWNLOAD THE FILM ON iTUNES HERE