A huge block buster!
This is the 31st Godzilla movie, give or take, and the second time Americans make it their own. Roland Emmerich’s 1998 version was unfaithful, horrendous and insulted the die-hard fan. While the 2014 version isn't fun, funny or cheesy, it captures essences from all three Godzilla series. It introduces a new creature with a backstory and M.O. that feel pertinent and part of the collection.
It is as serious as the early Showa era (1954-1975), goes for photorealism, texture and barely lit monsters à la Heisei (1984-1995), then gives purpose and emotions to combat-ready protagonists reminiscent of those introduced in the Millenium series (1999-2004). This is the most dramatic, well made and well shot Godzilla to date. The actors are the best they've been, too.
It is a slow burn that teases you by only showing bits and pieces of the monsters. Most scenes are dark, rainy or cloudy. All is unleashed in the third act and then no punch is pulled. Godzilla’s 3D mesh is somewhat animated like a man in a suit and is a proportionate design. While his classic marches are nowhere to be found, his atomic breath is put to good use and his legendary growl returns!