Growing up in the 80s, Godzilla is one of the cornerstones of my childhood as the iconic monster was everywhere, from TV to the movies, to toys and cartoons. While we don’t talk about the failed 1998 film, America finally got it right in 2014’s Godzilla, and now we finally have the 4K HDR release that features monster sized fun for fans and newcomers.
The plot has us following the life of Ford Brody (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) who grew up in Japan and had his mom die in a nuclear plant accident, which changed his life and his father Joe (Bryan Cranston) forever. Ford is part of the military and deals with explosives while his dad becomes consumed by what happened to his wife and does whatever he can to find answers, leading him to getting arrested in Japan. It’s not long before we learn that a mysterious organization called Monarch has been hiding things from the public eye, namely giant monsters that once ruled the planet are now starting to wake from their slumber and cause trouble for humanity.
When two giant monsters tear through cities all over the world in order to spawn more of their kind, it ends up summoning the king of the monsters, Godzilla, to put a stop to them and restore balance. Of course while all of this is happening, Ford, his wife Elle (Elizabeth Olsen) and their young son are caught up in the middle and have to fight to survive through the ensuing chaos to be together again.
Gareth Edwards does a great job directing Godzilla, even though it’s a slow burn to be sure. It’s all part of the massive pay off though, as we get to catch glimpses of Godzilla here and there until he’s finally shown when confronting the other monsters. I had a great time watching this take on the iconic monster, and I really loved how they embraced Japanese mythology to support Godzilla and why he exists.
I was already impressed by the visuals and audio with the standard Blu-ray release, but this 4K version with HDR color and Dolby HD audio really takes things up a few notches. The picture is crisp as are the colors (especially the part when the red flares come into play), and the sound will have you running for cover when Godzilla and the monsters stomp around and fight.
It would’ve been nice to have had some new special features added to this release, namely some much welcomed audio commentary by Edwards, but the ones included are from the previous Blu-ray. There are a few cool ones such as the video files from Monarch that detail Godzilla and the monsters, with the rest of the extras providing some behind the scenes footage of the film.
If you’re a fan of the king of monsters or want to start from the beginning of this monster universe (followed by Kong: Skull Island, Godzilla: King of the Monsters and the recent Godzilla vs Kong), you’ll want to pick the 4K release of Godzilla for your collection. It’s a slow but fun ride that has a sweet pay off when the monsters duke it out, and sets the stage nicely for the other films that followed. Seeing that Godzilla vs Kong is breaking record, here’s hoping there will be future films with both of them soon.