Perry Mason and the Radioactive Scaly Boy this isn't.
I was both super hyped to see this movie and super nervous. Reviewers, both professional and YouTube stars alike have pretty much not said great things about it. It's certified rotten on Rotten Tomatoes. I made plans to see this four more times with various friends, and if it sucked, I gotta sit through a movie I don't like four times because I'm too polite to cancel. What if my enthusiasm for the big guy really put me in a corner?
Well, I saw it tonight, by myself, in a crowded as heck theater, and I gotta say I liked it. Is it a great movie? No. But it's fun and it's nowhere near as messy as the reviewers would have you believe. In fact, sometimes I found myself wondering if they watched the same movie I did because some of the things they picked against were either A) not really there or B) so minor it was like they were looking for things to complain about. I'd address most of them if I could, but spoilers. To keep things more vague, the plot does make sense, the motivations for the majority of the characters do make sense, there's enough of a human element to keep you interested, and yes, almost everyone gets a fair amount of screen time, villains and heroes alike. In fact, the only characters that I think didn't get enough screen time are Mothra, Rodan, and the unnamed "titans."
So what did I like about it? Well for one, it's a sheer spectacle almost from beginning to end. We're talking wall to wall battles and destruction, with breaks in between to push the plot along. I was told to watch this in IMAX. I'm glad I didn't because even in a normal theater, the sights and sounds were almost overwhelming. For all of my future viewings, I'm hitting an independent theater with smaller screens and less overwhelming speakers.
This movie is definitely made by Godzilla fans. From small easter eggs like a protester's sign that boldly reads "Destroy All Monsters" to more overt inclusions like incorporating Godzilla's original theme music in a key scene, this movie has a ton of winks and nods. I was originally worried about how Mothra was gonna be handled, as I found her design very aggressive, but they handled her wonderfully and honestly I wish she was in it more (I'm biased though, next to Godzilla she will probably always be my favorite). In fact, all four main monsters were very well handled, with Godzilla reminding me of a grizzled old sheriff, Ghidorah being a murderous psychopath, and Rodan being like a modern incarnation of the monster from his original film. I actually really liked with what they did with Rodan in this movie, because the original Rodan film aside, I've never really been fond of the character.
This is an awful ramble. Look, if you like Godzilla, you're probably gonna like this movie. If you like spectacle and balls crazy action, you're probably gonna like this movie. If you watched the trailers, you know what you're in for, and if you thought they were alright, you're probably gonna like this movie. If you understand that you're going to see an American kaiju film and the idea appeals to you, you're probably gonna like this movie. If you go in expecting something on par with a Coen Brother's film though? You're in for some disappointment, and really, that's kind of on you.
In short, the reviewers got this one wrong.