The Daily Tar Heel
Printing news. Raising hell. Since 1893.
Saturday, Dec. 9, 2023 Newsletters Latest print issue

We keep you informed.

Help us keep going. Donate Today.
The Daily Tar Heel

Movie Review: Godzilla

? ? ? 

"Godzilla" has all of the elements to make it a great monster movie – earth-shattering roars and explosions, an epic fight to the death between skyscraper-sized behemoths that destroys cities around the world in its wake, and humankind left dumbfounded and defenseless by creatures that they helped to create.

The sheer size of Godzilla and the monsters he was battling — named by the military as M.U.T.O., Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism — was baffling. By comparison, humans were smaller than ants, with the monsters completely indifferent to the fact they were killing tens of thousands of humans underfoot.

We rarely see Godzilla in his entirety, with most of the movie showing the two M.U.T.O.'s destroying sizable areas of Japan, Hawaii and California. We often see his foot as he walks through cities, shaking the ground with every step, or the spikes on his back as he swims by aircraft carriers, dwarfing them by comparison.

Despite the excellent effects, sounds and sense of magnitude viewers got from the movie, the plot was rather generic. It included a crazy scientist (Bryan Cranston) who was right all along, his son turned military hero in the event of catastrophe (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and the hero’s wife and son left helpless while he travels around the world to rescue them.

Screenwriter Max Borenstein also throws in a couple of military hot-heads who don’t listen to scientists’ reasoning to create conflict, and of course, the Japanese leader of the project gone horribly wrong (Ken Watanabe) to first introduce the creature by its name.

Regardless, people don’t go see a monster movie for its sophisticated plot line, and I think that it definitely serves its purpose in the chain of Godzilla films.

To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.


Special Print Edition
The Daily Tar Heel's 2023 Year in Review Issue