Godzilla Minus One – REVIEW

Godzilla Minus One - prepare for awesomeness!

Over the past ten years we’ve had a number of Godzilla films culminating in the monster mash up with King Kong but Godzilla Minus One takes it right back to the beginning in Japan. It’s 1945 and kamikaze pilot Koichi (Ryunosuke Kamiki) takes cover on an island garrison under the pretence of having engine trouble with his jet. It’s a reminder of a forgotten age of how fanatical the rulers of Japan were in warfare and must have King Charles pining for an era when he could have had wannabe pilot Prince Harry conscripted into the corp. But death will follow Koichi when a pre-mutated Godzilla stomps about the island killing eight of the mechanics and leaving Koichi guilt ridden having not used his plane’s weapons on the monster. It’s a great opening sequence giving us a full view of what Godzilla will look like once mutated.

With the aftermath of the war having decimated Japan Koichi shacks up with a young woman and an orphan baby as the city is rebuilt and he takes a high paid but high risk job clearing mines using an internationally recognised technique – machine gunning them from a wonky wooden boat.

But Tokyo still recovering from the fallout of WWII is about to be flattened again when the terrified locals run for their lives from a rampaging Godzilla. Its reminiscent of Hollywood A-listers fleeing a charity event when Meghan Markle gate crashes it. The Tokyo attack by Godzilla is a scene of carnage that finds a moment to pay homage to those 1950’s movies  recreating that iconic shot from the original Toho films with a train carriage in the monsters jaws.

Unlike the spectacle that Hollywood favour, (and there is spectacle here), this version touches on themes of patriotism, guilt and even a critique of Japan’s war effort and its all the better for it acting as a counterbalance to the final climactic event which again, unlike Hollywood versions, their plan is ingenious involving more than just hurling massive explosives at the monster.

Written and directed by visual effects maestro Takashi Yamazaki and released on the 70th anniversary Godzilla Minus One is far different from those westernized incarnations and this is well worth searching out to see on the biggest screen you can find ideally IMAX if possible. There’s both spectacle and pathos that are handled with aplomb making this one of the best classic monster movies in years.

related feature : Visual Effects Supervisor Guillaume Rocheron talks about his work on, ‘Godzilla: King of the Monsters’……

related feature : Godzilla King of the Monsters – London premiere with Millie Bobby Brown

Here’s the Godzilla Minus One trailer…….


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