I am a Godzilla fan. The fella has pretty much played a crucial part in my years of growing up from childhood to young adulthood. And YES, I actually really like the Godzilla 2014 American remake which I find to be immensely underrated. So as one could expect, I had a substantial amount of anticipation for this long-awaited sequel to Gareth Edwards’ remake.
I will sock the next person who directly tells me in person that story doesn’t matter in a movie like this. I am tired of this pathetic—I know, harsh—fanbase disliking and complaining about every negative review of this movie on YouTube and IMDb because they dared to say that “the story and characters should matter in a Godzilla movie.” These “fans” don’t understand that a Godzilla movie simply cannot be two-hours of pure, straightforward Kaiju action because at some point the movie will become tiresome and uninteresting. You need a somewhat cohesive story—and it doesn’t even have to be a smart nor clever story—that is riveting enough and makes enough sense to get the majority consensus invested in the presentation of a mammoth blockbuster like a Godzilla movie.
Godzilla: King of the Monsters reminds me of a Transformers flick. I am dead serious. Here’s the formula: insert repetitive CGI battles, cheesy military/secret organization involvement, crappy jokes, a kid in danger, disposable side characters, LOUD NOISES, FLASHY IMAGERY, and an excessively stretched out storyline. This movie is whole-heartedly on the level of the Transformers movies. It’s obnoxious in its execution and incautious to granting the audience any hints of effort.
Before I completely shred this movie to a melting pulp, I will share the one positive I had with this movie. Some shots in this movie look “wallpaper worthy” and are just effusing with epic colors and illustrations. Like, THE CGI WAS BEAUTIFUL. Primarily, anytime a fight was about to occur (and there’s only like three of them in this movie so I don’t know why people are saying that there’s a trillion times more Kaiju action in this compared to the 2014 remake but, okay) and you saw the two monsters standing far apart from each other, giving one another the death stare, preparing for a duel, it looked like something straight out of an avant-garde painting. Despite how despicable this movie ended up being, at least it had some praiseworthy visual design to it.
Now, here are the reasons why Godzilla: King of the Monsters SUCKS:
1. My Expectations Were Subverted
This reason isn’t really a valid flaw, it’s truthfully my fault that it exists, but the first two trailers for this movie are immaculate. Like, they made this movie look superior to Gareth Edwards’ interpretation. The music set a far more serious tone than the actual movie we got, and it pisses me off how contrasting the marketing was compared to the movie solely on mood.
2. The Characters
NOBODY’S ACTIONS MAKE ANY SENSE WHATSOEVER IN THIS ENTIRE MOVIE. ESPECIALLY YOURS, DR. EMMA RUSSELL!
I might’ve honestly been fine with this movie if they didn’t focus on the human parts of the story so much. But guess what? We spend about 75% of the entire freakin’ film with them, so I can’t really be fine with this reprehensible wastebasket! I hear a lot of reviewers saying that this movie has more monster fighting than the original, and really it technically does, but in a movie surrounded by so much rubbish in the plot and story of this blockbuster, they should’ve just went full in and changed that 25% of the film which involves monster fights to somewhere around 65% because there evidently wasn’t enough it to keep me entertained.
I wanted to punch Vera Farmiga’s character’s stupid face every moment she was on screen. I wanted to slap Eleven in the face and tell her to get a hold of herself and stop screaming all the time. Every time Bradley Whitford’s character made any infuriating, sarcastic side comment, I wanted to feed him to Godzilla. And even Ken Watanabe’s character, I wanted to send straight to the depths of Hade’s grave whenever he brought up the concept of not killing Godzilla because he’s a king or some bulls***. Also, Charles Dance and Kyle Chandler’s characters, stop being the worst leaders in the history of film! I wanted everybody to die in this movie. I’m not a sociopath, it’s a fictional movie, get over it.
In a planet with this many stupid, ignorant, selfish, psycho human beings, I—without a shadow of a doubt—would be fine with Godzilla and the rest of the creature-feature gang reining hell upon this gosh forsaken universe. I have lost care for anything that happens, and now all I have to rely on is that the fights will be, at the very least, well directed and fun to watch…
3. The Comedy
I think I laughed unintentionally during this movie as much as I laughed intentionally during Booksmart. For those who haven’t read my review for Booksmart, let’s just say I laughed a LOT during that film. So, in some cases, one—especially someone who studies writing—can have a good chuckle consistently at this movie’s writing and dialogue. It’s some of the worst I have ever laid ears on, truly. This is almost up there with “it’s a so bad that it’s good movie” except for the fact that this movie is primarily just a transparent bore, which takes away the fun of the film.
Also, whenever this movie tries to deliberately interpose comedy, it ends up being worded in some of the cringiest configurations of humor ever. I swear, and elementary school child wrote this pile of a hot garbage script. They make a “time to get a new watch joke” in this movie. I AM NOT JOKING!
4. The Fan Service
This movie is fan service porn for American Godzilla devotees who want to j*** o** in the theaters whenever an iconic monster from the Godzilla universe pops up. They literally put like twelve or so other monsters in here just so that they can end up doing absolutely nothing with 70% of them because they want to get suck-ups to keep their asses in the seat and cheer every time a monster from the Godzilla lore appears on screen for two seconds. F*** off.
5. 80% of the Action
There is technically more Godzilla in this movie than Gareth Edwards’ interpretation. However, about 80% of the shots of Godzilla and the monster fighting action are either close-ups or involve shaky-cam, so typically you can’t tell what in the hell is going on, so in a sense, Gareth Edwards’ remake had more feasible action in it. And better action too! The final, glorious and most certainly badass finale of Edwards’ thriller still defeats every action spectacle in this sequel by a longshot. You want to know why? Because you could actually see it clearly!
Additionally, anytime there’s an action scene, it’s intercut with more tedious human stuff that nobody cares for! Just show the damn creature feature battle and leave the humans out of it for more than thirty freaking seconds! Stop interlacing between bloody nonsense and somewhat cool Kaiju battles! If I’m going to watch a dumb CGI monster movie, I want to see just the dumb CGI monster fights without any distractions!
Random Sarcastic Intermission (My Interrogation):
I’ve loved Godzilla ever since I was a child. I grew up on the movies, the cartoons, the toys, you name it, I adore the giant creature. Apparently according to people who deem themselves “true fans,” Godzilla: King of the Monsters is only for the real admirers. I guess since I disliked this movie because it had a poor story, terrible, unlikable characters with ultra-thick plot armor, atrocious dialogue, nonsensical plot elements, action sequences that have way too many close-ups or weather disruptions so I couldn’t tell half the time what was going on, and an ending that is clearly made as pity fan service, I am no longer a devoted fan. Welp, I guess I must give up my Godzilla fan-pass forever. Looks like according to the majority of “audiences,” those who don’t like or love this movie don’t deserve it anymore or are just being a “critic.” Sigh. I am so ashamed to have wanted a cohesively put together Godzilla movie.
6. Nothing Interesting Happens
I swear, people have been claiming that this movie is less boring than the original (original meaning the 2014 American remake). I just don’t get it, fellas. Nowhere at any point was I locked into any of the accorded events arising on screen unless it was a pretty shot of Godzilla, Mothra, or King Ghidorah. The movie already had dragged me on such an arrogant ride right from the gecko that it became difficult to be amused by anything else. The film is just exposition, after exposition, after exposition, after exposition, and blah, blah, blah, f*** your exposition-heavy movie.
7. Nothing Makes Any Sense
Godzilla: King of Monsters has got to behold one of the worst scripts ever developed in a blockbuster with this high of a budget. I could get into grave, spoiler-filled detail on how every vital or meager plot point is fallaciously illogical in every sense of the term, but this is a spoiler-free review, therefore I will keep it that way for those who still care to see this movie. Just know, if you go into this movie, your suspension of disbelief will have to hit quantities in the infinity range. I should’ve come prepared.
8. Godzilla is Sort of a…Wimp?
I hear people saying that Godzilla is the ultimate definition of “awesome” in this movie compared to any other Godzilla movie out there. Yet, he needed so much random assistance from other characters in this movie. So much for being king. And it’s not the “assisting” that bothers me, it’s how we get there or why it’s happening. Godzilla doesn’t have to be invincible, absolutely, but he shouldn’t be forcefully carried on someone’s back in every act of this movie because the movie decided to interject a peculiar obstacle that stops our hero from saving the day just so we can have a reason for this movie not to end before the thirty-minute mark! Like…lameeeeeeeeee.
He’s not intimating in this movie also. He’s literally used as a plot device to save the humans whenever things get out of hand. I’m okay with the creature being a good guy, but I don’t understand why he is blindly always there to save the humans. He crushes those f****** 24/7 so why does he unconsciously care for our main characters???
I will admit though, in the last act, he does redeem himself a little bit. He still gets his ass handed to him—which is fine—and saved a couple times at extremely convenient moments—which isn’t fine—but there’s one, singular badass moment in there that genuinely put a smile on my face. That’s all the credit I’m giving Godzilla, however.
Sidenote, but, dude also has the all-time greatest timing ever. For a creature who isn’t the fastest being alive, dude knows when the perfect moment to save a character is just when you think they’re about to die. Ew.
9. Plot Armor is at Level 1,000,000
I swear, Millie Bobby Brown—who is a phenomenal actress especially for her age—is a indestructible god in this movie, more so than Godzilla. She is the literal reincarnation of Superman. Everybody else is also layered in plot armor. F*** your ability to never die for the suitability of the plot. This element gets so out of hand as the flick progresses that it just began to irritate me at one point. Like, I’m fine with a little bit of plot armor especially in a movie this goofy, but there is such thing as too much plot armor believe it or not.
10. There’s No Sense of Scale
This can coexist with reason 8. Gareth Edwards’—as exemplified in both his interpretation of Godzilla (2014) and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story—knows how to make things seem…well…big. He’s undoubtedly good with visual scale and making creatures feel intimidating and unquestionably feel like they are really there in San Francisco city or wherever. In Godzilla: King of Monsters, I felt like I was watching two cartoon characters fight on screen, encompassed by live-action footage of people. You just don’t feel the dread in this one like you do in the 2014 remake. It appears more phony than authentic.
If you liked King of the Monsters, fantastic, you clearly have an immortal’s tolerance and I commend you for that. But to me, what made Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla so uncanny in its execution as a blockbuster, was its progressive build-up in tension. Edwards also—as mentioned before—knows how to make scale play such a crucial part in Godzilla’s presence as his design and atmospheric entries always felt more than practical and the filmmakers for that project did properly know how to place its musical score more appropriately in order to raise the potency of the flick.
Godzilla: King of Monsters does the near opposite. It panders to catered fanboys while tricking audiences who legitimately care for a well-told, absorbing story with the laziest script thus far of 2019. They had four or five entire years to make this anticipated sequel marvelous, and it seems to me like they plainly steered towards the easiest possible way out. Welp. This sucks.
Thanks for listening to my TED Talk. Now, you can proceed onwards with your life.
“Godzilla: King of the Monsters” is now playing in theaters.