Aaron Dane Shanley’s review published on Letterboxd:
💀 NUMBER THIRTY THREE 💀
💀 ONE KAIJU OR KONG 💀
"Shin Godzilla" (2016)
* dir: Hideaki Anno
* Science Fiction / Horror / Bureaucratic Comedic Satire
[ ★★★★½ / ★★★★★ ]
Oh my God, I absolutely love this movie.
It's the greatest kaiju film I've ever seen, and honestly, nothing else even remotely comes close for me. I actually wasn't even aware that Hideaki Anno directed this one until it finished, and considering my passion for "Neon Genesis Evangelion", that might explain why I responded so strongly here.
"Shin Godzilla" is exciting and funny and fascinating down to the last minute detail, but also a bit sad and melancholy like my personal favorite monster stories always tend to be. This is a film all about research and procedure, and wow, does it rule. It's genuinely wild how gripping and well-shot this whole thing is considering it's largely comprised of intense boardroom meetings between government officials, but it all just somehow works; it's kinetic and endlessly inventive, constantly moving at an almost breathless pace. There's also like...fifty goddamn characters, but each one manages to be interesting and carve out their own distinct little personality that stands out in individual ways.
And then, of course, there's our titular lizard buddy.
I'm fully obsessed with Godzilla's look here: glowing red skin, spindly little arms, tail a mile long, creepy emotionless eyes. And he gets so crispy! It's legitimately unsettling at times too, words I've never used when describing a Zilla film before; the image of the beast crawling through the streets on its belly, fresh from the sea, convulsing around wildly as people flee in terror was absolutely horrifying. True nightmare stuff. There's also a scene that takes place at night where he suddenly charges up and starts glowing purple, spewing out so much fire that it eventually engulfs an entire city, before said fire turns into A FUCKING LASER. And all while the (incredible) score wails along in an awed operatic fervor. It's majestic and menacing and one of the coolest things I've ever seen.
Fantastic. One of those "watch one time and purchase immediately for many future viewings" type experiences. And now I can be angry along with everyone else that we probably won't ever get a sequel! Ah, to be part of a community.