Flashback Review: Godzilla 2000

After Roland Emmerich’s disastrous remake of Godzilla 1998 was critically panned by critics, (most notably Gene Siskel & Roger Ebert) longtime fans and movie goers. Japanese movie studio, “Toho” worked on a proper revival to bring back the real Godzilla on the big screen. In retaliation, Toho renamed Roland’s Godzilla as “Zilla.” Then they made Zilla duke it out with the title character in “Godzilla: Final Wars” with the fish eating iguana easily defeated by Godzilla.

Before Godzilla: Final Wars, Toho collaborated with Sony (back when they owned the American film rights) to distribute Godzilla’s comeback, unless Roland Emmerich or Zilla are not involved. The latter company agreed spending money on marketing and hiring actors to record English dialogue. After everything finished, “Godzilla 2000” was officially distributed.

Godzilla 2000 was released in 1999, (same year The Matrix came out) one year before it was released in America. It earned mixed to positive reviews from critics, movie goers and fans alike. Despite mixed reception, the film made a profit in Japan, but Sony failed to earn money in North America. Karma can be a pain in the rear after butchering a beloved icon,

With the highly anticipated “Godzilla: King Of The Monsters” slated to come out on May 31st, I’ve decided to look back at the Godzilla movies by watching the “Millennium Series.” If you want more details, go to James Rolfe/Angry Video Game Nerd’s website, “Cinemassacre.” He’s a passionate fan of the series, he has a video about which Godzilla movies should you watch as a newcomer. You can also check out his marathon of each Godzilla film titled “Godzillathon.”

Today’s review does not have any SPOILERS. If you haven’t been caught up or don’t recall any events, feel free to read my non-spoiler article.

Strong & Weak Qualities

Strong: Actors (obviously human) did a solid job for their performances.

Action Sequences were pretty good whenever Godzilla shows up on screen. Especially the battle between The King Of Monsters & Orga.

Practical Effects were used to simulate Tokyo’s destruction. Skyscrapers were actually miniatures, pyrotechnics were also involved to blow crud up & suits made for stuntmen to portray Godzilla & Orga.

Cinematography felt normal lacking technical flaws.

Godzilla’s design in this movie looked awesome. He’s beefed up, his dorsal fins are intact. Ten times better than Godzilla 1998.

Toho did their best to keep the source material of the franchise legit.

Just like in the original, the military are constructing an experimental weapon designated to combat Godzilla. It’s not actually a carbon copy.

Human characters were interesting. The story focuses on a man named Shinoda, who’s goal is to track down Godzilla’s whereabout to see if he’ll attack Tokyo or just minding his own business.

Godzilla’s trademark atomic breath & roar are retained. Thank goodness he never ate fish. Does the quote “That’s a lot of fish” ring any bells?

Akira Ifukube’s instrumental theme for the title character is retained in one scene. At least Toho didn’t play Diddy’s “Come With Me.” You know the song that butchered Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir?” Why did Jimmy Page sold his creativity to “Hollywood Devils?”

Godzilla’s physiology is explored as it factors in as a plot point. Learning about Godzilla’s DNA expands the mythology of the franchise.

My favorite part of the film is when an epic fight escalates in an “explosive” manner. Warner Bros. if you’re reading this review, don’t hire Michael Bay. Care to explain “Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen?”

An unsympathetic character gets himself a “reality check.” I wish Lena Dunham met her fate in real life. She’s the embodiment of two wordsI describe her as, “Karma Houdini.” If you known the meaning of Karma Houdini, look it up on “TV Tropes.”

Weak: C.G.I. did not age so well. Orga’s UFO looks like a cheesy expensive Backstreet Boys music video. Godzilla swimming under water looked pretty fake. Let’s face it, this was back when Computer Animation wasn’t at its peak in today’s innovative technology.

Orga’s UFO covered in rock material reminded me of the “meteor” from “Joe Dirt.” When I first watched Godzilla 2000, I never cared about it. Now that I’m older, I realized how stupid it looked. I snickered & quipped “Well it ain’t a meteor.” It’s actually a quote from Joe Dirt. No wonder the spaceship from “Arrival” looked ridiculous.

The Tone can be pretty hokey. If you watch any English dubbed version of a Godzilla movie, chances on hearing ADR actors going way over-the-top are too dang high!

Product Placement featuring brands such as Sony, Apple, MasterCard & Visa. I’ll let this con slide, because I couldn’t find any other brand to shove down my throat.

The Final Verdict: B-

Godzilla 2000 is an average installment of the Godzilla franchise. It’s not a masterpiece or an epic cluster fudge. I find it adequate just to see Godzilla earning his reputation as an icon who deserves respect since his debut in 1954. If you are eager to see The King Of Monsters back on the big screen, go ahead and watch Godzilla 2000.

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