Shin Godzilla

Shin Godzilla ★★★★

A modern re-imagining of the 1954 classic in every way possible. Whereas the brilliant 2014 Gareth Edwards film took the pacing and world building to make the film feel of a kind with the original, mad men Hideoaki Anno and Shinji Higuchi bring forward the political and social supertext and once again use Godzilla as window dressing for a movie that's really about how ineffectual Japanese beaurocracy was in the fallout of the Fukushima disaster.

This is an ensemble piece as many Zilla films tend to be, but unlike the 1954 film, the characters here are all very intentionally dull and interchangeable. It could just as well have been one guy in a t-shirt that says Politician, and one guy in a t-shirt that says Army Man and achieved the same thing. They're an amorphous glob that represents the entirety of Japan.

Hideoki Anno brings a lot of Evangelion to this, a lot of this feels like it could've been a few episodes of Eva strung together, Godzilla practically appears like an Angel and even large chunks of the score are lifted from the show. Maybe this was a prequel film setting up the second impact?

Anyway this is a fascinating film and potential relaunch for a live action Toho Godzilla, whom between this and their recent Netflix anime trilogy seem to be leaning harder into Godzilla being once again a terrifying force of nature who is not our ally and perhaps we should be taking as a warning.

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