Godzilla ★★★★

This has been a good summer for blockbusters. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

I didn't really know much about the plot of this one before going into it, which was for the best. I thought that they were going to make Godzilla the big bad, a la Emmerich's Godzilla or the original Honda Gojira, and was pleasantly surprised to find that he's in fact the hero.

I agree with the various takes (the best I saw was from David Ehrlich) that the structure of the film is all about reducing the human POV down into a small spectator, such that the multi-generational family drama of the first half is reduced to little more than recognizable actors in the foreground in the film's final third, the real drama being on the monsters fighting. And I also appreciate that, despite another American city being reduced to rubble in another blockbuster, that the film seemed to actually think about what that means, and that lots and lots of people die. Unlike Man of Steel or The Avengers, where city destruction is just something that happens, here it's the whole point. Man is nothing compared to nature's fury.

The last shot made me want to stand up and cheer.