Holly Shin! It’s Fantazillastic!
To talk about Godzilla is to discuss one of Japan’s biggest icons, a beloved creature that can be both hero and villain in the kaiju (big monsters) genre.
Expectations were huge when Shin Godzilla – a title that may be translated as God Godzilla or True Godzilla – was announced, especially considering the fact that Evangelion‘s Hideaki Anno and Attack on Titan‘s Shinji Higuchi were set to co-direct. The legendary anime duo did not disappoint with their presentation of a fresh reboot of the creature, who is once again depicted as a threat to the world.
The film follows the same structure as the original; however, this time the core of the story deals with the human conflict involving the accidental creation of Godzilla, and all the resulting political and military tension. Yes, we know it sounds like a bit of a letdown, but this take actually works due to good script and solid performances that set the mood for some spectacular Godzilla moments.
Speaking of Godzilla, this time the creature gets the CGI treatment, with a motion-capture actor (Mansai Nomura) involved. But the original reptile’s full essence is preserved, and given some badass updates.
Overall, Shin Godzilla is a triumphant return of the true king of monsters (sorry, King Kong), and despite the extended dialogue and humans stealing minutes of precious screen time from the beloved monster, it manages to amuse both old school and new generations of fans.