The Kaiju/Monsterverse Thread (Kong & Godzilla)

Started by BatmanFanatic93, Sat, 2 Mar 2013, 02:26

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I'd love to see Minus One on the big screen. I'm keeping an eye out for showings at my local cinemas. I attended a theatrical screening of Blade Runner: The Final Cut last week (superb!), but Minus One screenings are scarce. Must be a limited release.

The response to the film has been universally positive from both critics and fans. I don't care what the majority of reviewers think, but the handful of critics whose opinions I do value all seem to love it. It sounds extremely promising. Considering what a generally poor year it's been for movies (as were the last few years), it'd be nice to end 2023 on a positive cinematic note.

Hopefully you will successfully find a local theater showing the film, Silver. Actually, I was pretty surprised the local theater to me was participating in showing "Godzilla Minus One" this week, as I distinctly remember inquiring about the previous live action Toho Godzilla movie back in 2016, "Shin Godzilla", and finding out the nearest theater was about a 4 hour drive away. lol That wasn't going to happen, so blu ray it was. When I checked out "Napoleon" last week at my local theater, they still didn't know if they were going to have "Godzilla Minus One" or not. Luckily, they got it. Here in the states, it's showing until Dec 7th. Not sure if that's the same for the UK or not....

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Lots of Monsterverse stuff has been coming out as of late.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lV1OOlGwExM











The King and the Big G. Then and Now.  ;D






The new Monsterverse villain is apparently named, The Skar King.







And someone decided to have fun with the Skar King image, by using Mechani-Kong instead.  :D




Kinda amusing getting one very serious Godzilla film, and a Monsterverse popcorn movie being so closely released next to one another, but hey, I ain't complaining. Kaiju fans have been eating good.


"Imagination is a quality given a man to compensate him for what he is not, and a sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is."

Quote from: The Joker on Mon,  4 Dec  2023, 00:22Hopefully you will successfully find a local theater showing the film, Silver. Actually, I was pretty surprised the local theater to me was participating in showing "Godzilla Minus One" this week, as I distinctly remember inquiring about the previous live action Toho Godzilla movie back in 2016, "Shin Godzilla", and finding out the nearest theater was about a 4 hour drive away. lol That wasn't going to happen, so blu ray it was. When I checked out "Napoleon" last week at my local theater, they still didn't know if they were going to have "Godzilla Minus One" or not. Luckily, they got it. Here in the states, it's showing until Dec 7th. Not sure if that's the same for the UK or not....

There are some UK screenings taking place next week. I'm not sure if I'll be able to get to any of them, but I'll try.

Quote from: The Joker on Mon,  4 Dec  2023, 00:22https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lV1OOlGwExM

Looks like the studio's taken to heart the criticism about Godzilla's thick legs. I'll need to see more of his new design in action before passing judgement. Based on the trailer The New Empire looks more like a Kong movie than a Godzilla film, but considering we've just got a brand new Godzilla solo movie I'm ok with that.

Here's an analysis of the trailer.


Quote from: The Joker on Mon,  4 Dec  2023, 00:22And someone decided to have fun with the Skar King image, by using Mechani-Kong instead.  :D


It would be so cool if Mechani-Kong showed up at the end of the movie to help battle the Skar King. Or if the Skar King was defeated and then resurrected as a cyborg Mechani-Kong in the next movie.

According to Chinese astrology 2024 is the year of the dragon, but for sci-fi movie fans it's going to be the year of the ape. DC should cash in and do a series of ape-themed comics like they did in the 1950s. Bring back Gorilla Grodd, Titano and Detective Chimp.

GvK was one of the best cinema going experiences I've had in recent times, and I've been quietly waiting for more ever since. The unpretentious entertainment route will always resonate with audiences no matter the era, but I think especially now. Put your politics in the bin and give me a giant ape lashing out with all he has, clutching a ridiculously oversized axe and going to town on anything he deems fit for smashing. I like Skar King as the villain as it will make this belting personal, and he provides a contrast to MechZilla from the previous film. Really looking forward to watching this with a skyscraper high tub of popcorn.

On Monday Godzilla Minus One became the first foreign language live action film to top the US box office in its opening week since Hero in 2004. It's now the highest grossing live action Japanese film ever at the US box office. It's doing so well that Toho has decided to extend its American theatrical run.

I've got a ticket booked to see it on Friday (the 15th) next week, which is its opening day in the UK. This will be my first time seeing a Japanese-made Godzilla movie on the big screen. I can't wait. ;D

I just found out that BOOM! Studios published a six-issue comic series titled Kong on the Planet of the Apes a few years ago. I'd never heard of this until now.


Has anyone read it? I might track down a copy before the new GxK and POTA movies come out next year.

Quote from: Silver Nemesis on Tue,  5 Dec  2023, 14:35Looks like the studio's taken to heart the criticism about Godzilla's thick legs.

I remember this being brought up A LOT back in 2014 when Legendary and Warners released the first offering in the-now "Monsterverse" movies, and I never really understood it. Godzilla, much more often than not, has been depicted as far from slim-and-trim as a kaiju can get, and typically has always had those big 'ol thunder thighs. It's much more atypical, when he doesn't. Not sure if this complaint largely stems from comparing the 2014 Godzilla to the 1998 Tri Star Godzilla, but that's one of the few ways I can make sense out of it.

QuoteI'll need to see more of his new design in action before passing judgement. Based on the trailer The New Empire looks more like a Kong movie than a Godzilla film, but considering we've just got a brand new Godzilla solo movie I'm ok with that.

Judging from the Stateside box office of "Kong Skull Island", and 2019's "Godzilla King of the Monsters", it's fair to say that Kong is more of a draw over here in the U.S. I can see why it would make sense to continue Kong as the main Monsterverse protagonist rather than Godzilla. Godzilla has a much more attested franchise, but Kong is still King over here.

QuoteIt would be so cool if Mechani-Kong showed up at the end of the movie to help battle the Skar King. Or if the Skar King was defeated and then resurrected as a cyborg Mechani-Kong in the next movie.

I wouldn't be opposed to the idea to be perfectly honest. What seemed so far off and away when you go back to watch the 2014, seems only just a touch away now with the Monsterverse fully embracing the fantastical.

Quote from: The Dark Knight on Thu,  7 Dec  2023, 11:11Put your politics in the bin and give me a giant ape lashing out with all he has, clutching a ridiculously oversized axe and going to town on anything he deems fit for smashing.

Right. Legendary would really have to go out of it's way to muck up this franchise as Hollywood has with so many others.

Quote from: Silver Nemesis on Thu,  7 Dec  2023, 16:59I've got a ticket booked to see it on Friday (the 15th) next week, which is its opening day in the UK. This will be my first time seeing a Japanese-made Godzilla movie on the big screen. I can't wait. ;D

Awesome! Glad you're getting the chance to check it out on the big screen.  8)

QuoteI just found out that BOOM! Studios published a six-issue comic series titled Kong on the Planet of the Apes a few years ago. I'd never heard of this until now.


Has anyone read it? I might track down a copy before the new GxK and POTA movies come out next year.

Unfortunately, I'm really behind pretty much anything relating to comics in general here in recent years, but this sounds like a pretty cool crossover.



"Imagination is a quality given a man to compensate him for what he is not, and a sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is."

I saw Minus One today. I agree with the consensus that it's excellent. I'd rank it as the best Godzilla movie since the 1954 original, and perhaps the best overall. But I should really let it sink in a bit before saying that.

I liked everything about it. The story is great and Ryunosuke Kamiki as Shikishima is probably the most interesting protagonist I've seen in a kaiju movie. Normally the human drama element is the weakest part of these films, but in Minus One the protagonist's storyline had me gripped from the first scene where he lands on the island. That whole sequence, with the mechanics fighting the smaller pre-mutated Godzilla, reminded me of the WWII scenes in Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah (1991).


The only thing missing was a cameo by Spielberg's dad.


Shikishima's storyline touches on themes of survivor's guilt and redemption framed against the backdrop of a post-war Japan undergoing a process of cultural rehabilitation. The notion of virtuous suicide, and specifically kamikaze tactics, was ingrained in Japanese military culture for centuries prior to the US occupation. Many Japanese people in the 1940s hated war and opposed their country's actions in Indo-China, but there was also a powerful militarist presence in their society that favoured overseas adventurism (Kazuo Ishiguro's 1986 novel An Artist of the Floating World explores this conflict very effectively and, coincidentally, features a scene in which the protagonist takes his grandson to see the original Gojira), and it was their influence that dragged their people into WWII and kept alive the idea that committing suicide for the emperor was an honourable thing.

Minus One is not, as some early reports falsely claimed, anti-American. It is however critical of the Japanese militarist government that ordered its own pilots to kill themselves in battle. Shikishima embodies the human conscience and instinct for self-preservation struggling against a sense of honour and duty to one's country. At the end of the film, he and his fellow veterans have to go to war again. Only this time it is not a militarist government dragging its people towards their doom, but rather a people yearning for peace struggling to survive against a doom that's unavoidable. They're fighting not for conquest, but for life. I cared about the characters, all of whom are adequately developed, and I felt anxious whenever Godzilla was on the rampage. All kaiju movies offer the spectacle of mass destruction, but not all can make you feel as emotionally-invested in what's at stake as Minus One does.

There are obvious shades of Jaws, Grave of the Fireflies and Gojira '54 on display in Minus One. I like Naoki Satō's score, which is very moving and does a good job of incorporating the classic Godzilla theme. I still prefer the practical effects approach for Godzilla himself, but I went into this knowing he'd be fully CG. Some of the low-angle shots looking up at him reminded me of his cameo in Always: Sunset on Third Street 2 (2007). I never saw that film, but I did see Godzilla's scene on YouTube many years ago.


I just found out Always: Sunset on Third Street 2 was directed by Takashi Yamazaki, who also directed Minus One. It's astonishing to me that the budget for Minus One is reportedly less than 15 million US dollars. The cinematography, costumes and sets are all high quality and evoke the historical setting in a way that's gritty but also pleasing to look at. Fans of aviation-themed dieselpunk movies like The Rocketeer and Porco Rosso will find much to enjoy here. It's also an oceanic sci-fi/horror movie, which is always a big draw for me.

The fact such an attractive-looking film can be made for so little reinforces how wasteful and over-budgeted most modern Hollywood movies are. The Flash cost over $200 million and the special effects looked terrible. Along comes Minus One with a budget of under $15 million, and it looks great. Sure, some of the CGI looks unconvincing, but when is that ever not the case? Considering the budget, I think the effects are very good.

Toho obviously wasn't going to be able to compete with the budgets of Legendary Pictures' MonsterVerse movies, so they did the smart thing and went in a completely different direction with Shin Godzilla and Minus One. Where Legendary is offering more lightweight comicbookish entertainment, where you can switch your brain off and enjoy the spectacle, Toho is making more serious, culturally-layered and dramatic science fiction films with emotional depth and thought-provoking themes. There's room for both types of Godzilla movies, and I enjoy both, but I admit I do prefer the Toho series. I find them more sophisticated and consider them the real Godzilla movies. Gojira '54, Shin Godzilla and Minus One form a great trilogy that exemplifies the best of the genre.

Minus One also has an ideal running time of roughly two hours. It's about the same length as Burton's Batman movies, which I think is the perfect duration for this sort of film. It never overstays its welcome and it never gets boring. I really don't have too many criticisms, except that I thought Noriko's survival was a bit farfetched. The only other issue I had with the movie concerned the subtitles. I'm not fluent in Japanese, but I know enough of the language to recognise that the subtitles were sometimes saying something completely different from what the actors were saying. I understand it's necessary to rewrite the lines so they don't sound stilted, but I found it distracting in places.

Other than those minor points, I think it's a terrific film. Definitely one of my favourites of 2023. It might even take the top spot. Time will tell. I've heard that more of the limited international theatrical runs are being extended owing to the movie's popularity. In a sane world, a film this good would be the big Christmas blockbuster. Hopefully others will catch it on the big screen while they can. Even if you're not normally a Godzilla fan, you should go see this one. It's worth it.


Godzilla Minus One



"Imagination is a quality given a man to compensate him for what he is not, and a sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is."


Kenpachiro Satsuma has sadly passed away.

Best known for his portrayal of Godzilla during the Heisei era of films, from 1984 to 1995. Satsuma also provided suitmation for Hedorah "The Smog Monster", and Gigan during the Showa era of films as well prior to graduating to the big G.

R.I.P.




"Imagination is a quality given a man to compensate him for what he is not, and a sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is."