Godzilla Minus One

Verdict: Godzilla Minus One is a top-tier monster movie with epic scenes of destruction and incredible special effects.

A group of Japanese men team up to protect their country from a giant prehistoric monster known as Godzilla.

More often than not with cinema franchises, the instalments get progressively worse as it continues. Godzilla Minus One, which is the 37th movie in the monster series, firmly bucks this trend.

The film, written and directed by Takashi Yamazaki, is set in a post-war Japan as the citizens are trying to rebuild their lives and homes following the devastation.

Just as they are making progress, destruction comes knocking on their door once again in the form of a giant prehistoric monster nicknamed Godzilla.

Former kamikaze pilot Koichi Shikishima (Ryunosuke Kamiki) teams up with Kenji Noda (Hidetaka Yoshioka), Shiro Mizushima (Yuki Yamada) and Sosaku Tachibana (Munetaka Aoki) to help save the Japanese people and their homes from the beast.

Godzilla Minus One is a fantastic monster movie and a highly entertaining trip to the cinema. The creature design of Godzilla is awesome and all of its appearances on-screen are epic.

The people vs. Godzilla action scenes are impressively executed, given the film’s budget, and the digital effects are flawless.

Naturally, after 37 films, there isn’t much that we haven’t seen before when it comes to Godzilla but there are plenty of new approaches here.

You can see the inspiration from Hollywood movies though, with the opening Godzilla encounter feeling reminiscent of Jurassic Park and the boat sequence feeling very similar to Jaws.

However, you can forgive the familiar territory because it looks darn cool and it’s so enjoyable, especially when the classic Godzilla theme kicks in.

Minus One invests more time and energy in the human characters than your average monster movie. Koichi’s struggle with PTSD and regret and his quest for redemption grounds the story, as does his attempt to rebuild his life with Noriko (Minami Hamabe) and their adopted daughter Akiko.

Unfortunately, there are some issues with the acting and script. Kamiki really struggled to keep his performance realistic, particularly in times of strife and sorrow, and this isn’t helped by the patchy script, which gets rather cheesy near the end.

But those are minor issues in the grand scheme of things. Overall, Godzilla Minus One is a top-tier monster movie with epic scenes of destruction and incredible special effects.

In cinemas from Friday 15th December.

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