Feeling as if he unfairly cheated death too many times, Shikishima, a surviving Kamikaze pilot is attacked on Odo Island along with many war plane engineers by a gargantuan monster. After the engineers die due to Shikishima failing to distract the monster, an overwhelming amount of guilt weighs on him, especially after a homeless woman and a baby move into his home when he returns. Shikishima, now on a personal mission, teams up with a large group of veterans to finally take down the monster known as Godzilla.
Ah, dear readers, gather around as I take you through the cinematic rollercoaster that is "Godzilla Minus One". It's a film that makes you wonder - did Godzilla just step on my sense of good cinema or was it always this flat?
The Star-Studded Cast: A Trip Down Memory Lane
First off, let's talk about the stars. Minami Hamabe, Ryunosuke Kamiki, and Sakura Ando grace this movie, making it a "who's who" of Japanese cinema. Remember Hamabe? That charming girl from "Let Me Eat Your Pancreas" - a movie as bizarrely titled as her performance in this one. Then there's Kamiki, ah, the voice of Taki in "Your Name". His ability to emote through voice alone was sorely missed here, as he physically graced the screen. And Sakura Ando, from "Shoplifters", where her performance stole our hearts - something this movie couldn’t manage.
The Trailer: A Masterclass in Misdirection
The trailer, oh boy! It was like watching a highlight reel of all the cool parts of the movie. It's like those trailers that promise you a comedy, and you end up with a lecture on existential despair.
Plot: Where Logic Goes to Die
The plot is something else. Our main man, Shikishima, feels guilty about surviving as a Kamikaze pilot - a topic as comfortable as a porcupine in a balloon store. Attacked by Godzilla, because why not, he then inexplicably ends up with a homeless woman and baby in his house. Talk about bad days getting worse. His guilt trip turns into a veteran's reunion against Godzilla. It's like watching your grandpa gearing up to fight the neighbor's aggressive Chihuahua.
What I Liked: A Nostalgic Pat on the Back
I did appreciate the old-school special effects, a heartwarming nod to the 50s and 60s Godzilla. It’s like watching your grandparents use Facebook; it’s not efficient, but it’s adorable. And the Godzilla design? Chef's kiss! It’s like they realized halfway through that Godzilla was the only character we cared about.
What I Disliked: When Drama Turns Into Melodrama
Now, onto the Hollywood makeover of this classic Japanese theme. Sacrifice? Nah, let's just add more explosions and one-liners. And the acting and music? So over-dramatized, you’d think the actors were trying to reach the people in the back... of another theater. The main character had the likability of a tax audit. When he finally had his hero moment, I felt more connected to my popcorn.
And The Hollywood Ending
Hollywood endings are like pineapple on pizza - some people swear by them, but purists know it’s just wrong. And Godzilla’s screentime? I’ve seen cameo appearances that felt more like leading roles.
Extra Tidbits: Because Trivia is Fun
Fun fact: the crew just blasted the original Godzilla roar from speakers to record it. Talk about being eco-friendly and recycling!
The "Minus One" in the title is a depressing math lesson about Japan post-WWII. The original Japanese tagline, "Postwar Japan. From Zero to Minus", is like saying, "You thought it was bad? Well, guess what..."
The Moment of Truth
So, where does that leave "Godzilla Minus One"? At a 5.9/10. It's like getting a C+ in a cooking class taught by Gordon Ramsay - not terrible, but definitely not great.