Sunday, May 18, 2014

F This Movie! - Godzilla (2014)

The King of Monsters smashes Patrick, JB and Adam Riske.



Download this episode here. (68.6 MB)

Subscribe to F This Movie! in iTunes

Also discussed this episode: The Blues Brothers (1980), Obvious Child (2014), Chef (2014), Palo Alto (2014)

84 comments:

  1. Very minor complaint- if Watanabe's character's father died in Hiroshima then he could be as young as 68, not 74. Also it was his GRANDFATHER'S watch.
    Personally I really enjoyed the movie but hey, to each their own. It does strike me that you guys wanted more worn out cliches, which strikes me as an odd complaint.

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    1. Cliches can be entertaining sometimes.

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    2. Maybe, but I am sick and tired of the ridiculous General character for example. Was glad to have one that acted like an actual human being for once.
      I at least understand and am sympathetic to most of your complaints but they just didn't bother me as much. Perhaps after the 1998 fiasco I was just happy they didn't screw it up nearly as bad as that one. And by the way, you want a movie filled with cliches then watch that one again. I am usually in a lot of agreement with Patrick but, boy, didn't this time.
      But then I have always said that if someone agrees with me all the time then they are either dishonest, insane or an idiot.
      Love you guys and keep up the good work.

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    3. But didn't I say a lot of the same things you're saying? Like it being his grandfather's watch, and appreciating that the movie isn't all cliches, and that I'm happy the characters were mostly real people and not cartoon dummies? I know I didn't like the movie and you did -- I just want to be represented fairly.

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    4. I meant JB, sorry about that. Don't know what I was thinking writing Patrick.

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    5. No problem! It just means you NEVER agree with me. (smiley face emoticon to emphasize joke)

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    6. In theory I like having a General that is an actual human being. My comment about wanting him to be an idiot basically is a reaction to the flatness of Stratharian's choices (odd, because he's an actor I like) and/or the poor writing for his character.

      Bottom line is thank you for your comment and for listening. Disagreements are good when it comes to movies. It shows both sides care.

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    7. Haven't listened to the podcast yet, but wanted to chime in and say I liked Strathairn's military character, even if he may have been flat. Although I would argue that's likely a realistic portrayal of an Admiral (even in such a unique situation).

      What I liked about him is that he did listen to both sides of the argument, and didn't make decisions without contemplating alternatives. In a bad movie, military leaders are often bumbling fools who only make decisions that best suit their own interests and won't listen to others. Unfortunately Serizawa's team couldn't offer up a viable alternative other than to "let Godzilla handle it", which is why he had to go ahead with the nuclear weapon.

      So I do think he was both a human being and a military leader in that situation. We didn't get tired old crap of him yelling at someone to take Serizawa away, ordering willful destruction at the hands of the military, or completely dismissing other ideas like you'd often see. The military did listen to the scientists expertise, but they couldn't really offer definite solutions.

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  2. I thought the movie was okay. I agree with your guy's complaints. Hawaii should have been an action fight scene & not a cut away 5 second clip on CNN. The director loves Spielberg & Spielberg gave us the T-rex action scene in the middle of the film. Godzilla needed that middle of the film action. I wonder if the budget had something to do with all the cut aways like the las vegas cut away & the final fight not being long enough. It's budget was only "160 million" & not a summer blockbuster 225-250 million.
    Also Bryan Cranston should have been the lead. You could still had his son & follow him from his view point as a army bomb expert.

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    1. Interesting point you bring up about the budget. I wouldn't be surprised if that was one reason for the cutaways.

      My problem with directors trying to do Spielberg (which rarely works..Super 8 or The Mummy are the only ones that spring to mind) is that he is Spielberg and they're not. Like Hitchcock with Psycho, there is something there, an overall aura etc. that can't be mimicked or replaced. Spielberg isn't perfect but he has made perfect movies which Gareth Edwards I don't think will, namely when he's trying to figure out what works like it's a formula. Art is not a formula. Spielberg didn't hide the reveal of the shark in Jaws on purpose. He did it out of necessity.

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  3. What I liked about this movie is that it is the only special effects movie this summer in which the person who is credited as director actually shot the action scenes. Captain America and the 'Amazing' Spider-man for example were directed by committee and had 2nd unit directors shoot the action scenes meaning that the climaxes of those movies were not even filmed by the director. No, Godzilla doesn't have much action, but I appreciate a movie that trusts an audience to pay attention rather than dismiss it for not being exactly the same as everything else we're told is good. I also appreciate that when the action does occur, it is actually filmed with an aesthetic sensibility, and by someone who can actually frame a shot, has a sense of kinetic timing, and can establish a geography for the action. In other words, a person who can direct a movie (better than Zack Snyder). This movie was directed by a human rather than a corporation and that's pretty rare nowadays. Sure, the script blows, but I like Edwards as a director. He has a great eye. His technique is disciplined. And he handles drama earnestly which, frankly, is a lot more than Marvel can say. I hope to see more movies like this. Maybe one of them will actually be good.

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  4. So much anger in you.

    I think my expectations were much more in line with what was delivered. I enjoyed myself and felt the final fight, and Godzilla in full glory, was a solid payoff so I left the theatre happy.
    There was plenty of monster action in it to keep it interesting enough and carry me along to the final payoff, despite it not being the specific monster on the marque.

    Oh, and I loved the Godzilla design and face, at least from front on. And the moment we start to see his tail light up was a legitimate moment of glee for me.

    I doubt ill be going back to see it any time soon, but im sure to check out the last 30 mins on dvd.

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  5. Granted, they are different movies, but I kept thinking about PACIFIC RIM while listening to the podcast. Much of what you guys wanted seemed to be done by Del Toro: better battle coverage, kicking off in Act2, more monster fun (and so-on). I'm curious to hear how you guys think the two movies measured up. Pretty sure Indiana Jaws would be preferable to Charley whose-Its.

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    1. I'm not much of a fan of Pacific Rim but I think it is a better movie than the new Godzilla.

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    2. I'm as surprised as Vargas to be saying this but I agree with Adam. Pacific Rim was better from a technical storytelling perspective - at least it had like character arcs and stuff.

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    3. I would like to take a moment to thank Sol as this is now my pcast or article with the most comments that I've been a part of. It's a big deal because it replaces my debacle of an overrated horror movie column as the new leader.

      It means nothing to anyone else but a lot to me :-)

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    4. I still can't believe you don't like Alien you @#$%ing piece of $#*!

      Oh, and you're welcome!

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    5. Alien is like a jar of pickles with a great label but no pickles in it.

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    6. Exactly - I love labels and hate pickles so this analogy works perfect for me. :P

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  6. I didn't love it, didn't loathe it. It just felt like another big, dumb Summer movie. I expected more. Thanks a lot, Internet! Everyone is entitled to their own opinion/experience, but I'm amazed at how willing the film's champions are to gloss over the boring human characters. I'm fine with the idea that the elder god monsters are top of the food chain and we're incidental to their struggle, but if the humans are so disposable why spend almost all of the movie focused on them? The post-game dissertations on the thematic resonance of man's insignificance in the face of unstoppable nature don't jive with the movie Gareth Edwards tried to make. A lot of bad blockbusters have terrible characters that get in and out of peril for purely plot reasons. Own it, Edwards! Stop hiding behind the giant atomic fire lizard.

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  7. I liked it but the whole timer thing didn't make any sense. they started it at an hour and a half, it would have taken 2 hours or more just to prepare the HALO jump, it would have taken more than 30 minutes to get the bomb out form the monsters nest. And the Army happens to have a Navy quartermaster to issue Indiana Jaws new gear and just happens to have it all on hand. He always had a clean uniform!And It's awesome that EOD is trained to do everything.

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    1. Believe it or not I thought of you, David, during the movie and wanted to ask you a question that I just remembered now (thanks to a passing helicopter) - would helicopters ever fly about 20 feet off the ground, less than 10 feet away from the vehicles they were escorting, like they did during a scene in Nevada? Because that shit just looked unnecessarily dangerous!

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  8. I'm completely shocked by the amount of positive reception this movie is receiving from critics and audiences alike. The fact that anyone is calling it anything other than mediocre is baffling. I was bored to death most of the two hour running time. EXCEPT when the giant cgi lizard blew fire into the giant generic cgi monsters mouth. I'm guessing a lot of people dug the movie because of that one and only, very brief fight. They're willing to ignore the garbage script and lack of characterization for "lizard vomits fire in bugs mouth".

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  9. Othen than the obvious lack of Godzilla. This movie also suffers from a huge Aaron Taylor Johnson problem. I mean Gareth Edwards couldve drawn a mouth and eyes on his own nutsack, dangled it in front of the camera in place of that charcter, and noone would ever notice.

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  10. I saw one youtube review likening Godzilla to the Walking Dead; in that it's more about the characters' reacting to Godzilla than Godzilla himself. I was all primed to enjoy this! Apparently, said characters are less than compelling? Still gonna go see it. It just can't be worse than Godzilla-98.

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  11. To call the characters less than compelling is giving the movie too much credit. They're basically non existent. Other than Cranston who does the best he can. I wouldn't say its worse than the 98 Godzilla tho. This one does have one or two moments of Godzilla doing actual Godzilla stuff. Its just a lot of build up to get there, and not near enough pay off.

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  12. "Godzilla? More like An Inconvenient Tooth!"

    – JB, F This Movie!

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  13. I think I liked it more than most of you, but I agree that there isn't enough awesomeness to salvage all the mess. By the time I got out of the theater I was happy about the final fight, but it almost felt like I had dreamed that all the Bryan Cranston stuff was in the same movie.
    All the comparisons to Jaws are driving me crazy, because they are almost not at all alike in any way! I think Jurassic Park is a more apt comparison. You get teased in the first scene, trudge through a bunch of human characters that aren't really the stars, then you get the brachiosaurs and triceratops (aka Mutos). You're there to see the raptors and T-Rex, but they'll hold you over for a little longer. But as you said Patrick, at least we feel for Alan and the kids and enjoy Malcom's eccentricities. The way this Godzilla movie goes would be like seeing the T-Rex swallow the goat, look at the car, then cut to when Ellie and Muldoon find the broken car. Where was the super awesome attack? The second half salvaged a lot of the first for me, but the more my friends hail this as a masterpiece, the more I'm forced to point at molehills I could so easily forgive until they become horrible jagged mountains.

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    1. Gareth Edwards was the one who started with the Jaws comparisons. It's also impossible not to compare this to Jaws when he's naming his characters Brody, especially Ellie Brody.

      Totally agree with you that some of it is Jurassic Park. E.G. The Godzilla roar sounds like the T-Rex. The Mutos fighting Godzilla at the end is like the raptors fighting the T rex in the visitor's center.

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    2. Yeah, it's definitely geared more towards Jurassic Park than Jaws. The characters aren't nearly as interesting, but in my view they filled the role they were expected to play. Maybe it would have been beneficial to keep Cranston's character around longer, but he needed to go back and work on Breaking Bad, so it seems they had to write his character off.

      Of course Godzilla is not at Jurassic Park's level, but I will say it's my favorite movie of this genre since Jurassic Park. Unless The Mist counts, but they're not really the same type of movie.

      I am happy to read a sequel sounds to be in order, as Edwards teased more action in a sequel (with a bigger budget). I will always be a fan of this genre, and will wait in anticipation for Jurassic World (only 13 months away!).

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  14. Hey Patrick-

    Why do you talk as though everything is a question? "Right now I am going to talk about Godzilla? and I think I like it? My first impressions were good?" (all general examples btw). Bottom line you sound pretentious already so by talking with that effect it only makes you sound worse. We both know.....you're better than that?

    Cheers

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    1. I don't know? But thanks for your "feedback?"

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    2. Adam Riske.......I guess...you're....ok? (read this with Bromley's snarky sense of self-importance....you know the tone I'm talking about.....you know?"

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    3. Don't come here just to be an asshole.

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    4. Seriously though Riske, you're fine. You have your moments of being genuinely funny and you have that everyman quality and come across as an average joe.....hope that's your intention lol

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    5. More Anonymous Than AnonymousMay 20, 2014 at 3:12 PM

      Ripping on Patrick anonymously? Wow. Such brave.

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    6. Hey - I come here just to be an asshole - I guess I'm not very good at it!

      Patrick, you'd probably come off less pretentious if you took off that film critic monocle you insist on wearing all the time - I can hear it in your voice.

      And don't get me started on Adam Riske. A-DUMB Risqué maybe. Ha!

      Hey Anonymous, let's start a Film Critic Critic blog - put your uselessness to good...use?

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    7. Anonymous - Your comments, like a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon, are not germane to our rhetoric on the new Godzilla film

      Bromley rules. Science fact.

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    8. I once met a guy named Anonymous. He was a dickhead too.
      Stop being a dickhead, Anonymous.

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    9. I love ya Brad, but that's the worst limerick I've ever heard. Best haiku though.

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    10. There once was a man named Sol
      Who tried to make love to a doll
      When his mother walked in,
      She said with a grin
      My name's Paul, and this shit's between y'all!


      Better?

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    11. Better, but what do you mean "tried to"?

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    12. Dont feel bad mate, i hear it happens to a lot of guys.

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  15. Ugh, this movie wasn't exactly the worst, but it was utterly frustrating. How are you going to make a Godzilla movie with no Godzilla and characters that are not compelling and expect it to be anything but boring? *sigh* I wanted to like it so much, but I was just bored almost the whole time. Yes, it was better than '98 Godzilla, but that's just saying it was slightly better than a shitty movie.

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    1. Also, part of me hopes Gareth Evans directs the sequel. At least that way it would be awesome action crazy.

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    2. I think Tommy Wirkola (Dead Snow, Hansel and Gretel) would crush a Godzilla movie.

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    3. I doubt Edwards is going anywhere, and since he's actually a "fan" of Godzilla movies, that's for the best. Just look at how Star Trek fans perceive Abrams for not being a lifelong fan.

      What they need to do is replace most of the cast, although Watanabe needs to stick around (and be given more to do).

      They also need to hire a new team of writers. All these guys have written in the past were the Expendables movies (Yuck!), Doom, and Seventh Son (which looks terrible). Replace those two bozo's, and the story will be much better.

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  16. Gotta say I agree with you guys for the most part with oneeee big exception. I HATED the kid on the train sequence. To me, it was nothing more than a shameless way to shoehorn in a "kid in peril" to that sequence. It's like the writer tried to think of ways to get the son on that train, but couldn't do it, so he just said "meh fuck it, he's a lost kid." I don't see the purpose it served, during any point before did Ford come off as a guy who would just let a kid die? At the end, the kid runs off to his parents, and the movie completely shrugs it off, all I could think was "what was the point of that?"

    I honestly think we didn't see Godzilla for so long, because the director thought that that was what made Jurassic Park and Jaws good. Such a misguided film. I think they turned in one draft of the script and said "yeah, this is good enough. Let's do it."

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  17. File me in with the frustrated crowd who expected more. I expected more Cranston, more action, and...oh, MORE GODZILLA. Not much too add, but Adam's comment about the movie being like driving in the rain for two hours was genius, hilarious, and accurate. My wife and I were wiped out after the movie and I think that's why. We'd been driving in the rain.

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  18. First off I want to commend Patrick, JB, and Riske Business for another engaging and entertaining podcast. I’ll admit that Godzilla was one of my most anticipated movies of 2014 and I’m not even a big Godzilla fan. I didn’t love or hate the premise, I was simply interested at the notion of approaching Godzilla in a new light. The marketing had me so hyped, that I gladly bought my $20 IMAX Real D)) 3D, reserved seating smoke & mirrors special edition bullshit ticket for opening day and merely expected an entertaining summer movie. I went in with the best of intentions and never imagined Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla would be such a miserable experience. I must reiterate I did not want to hate on this movie or gush fanboy love, I simply wanted to see an entertaining, engaging summer movie with a remarkably talented cast and instead I saw a severely misdirected Godzilla movie presented as a stark reality piece. As a summer blockbuster with a brain it fails. As a fun, B-Movie kaiju fight it fails. I don't know about you F-Heads, but here's hoping Guardians of the Galaxy will redeem Summer 2014.

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    1. I have (misdirected?) high hopes for Every Tom Cruise Movie Ever Made on June 6. The first gen script looked good, but that had the main character in his early 20's.

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    2. I do too. I think it looks cool, and Doug Liman is capable of being really good when he's not making Jumper.

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    3. This is me sticking up for Jumper.It's such a cool idea. The movie is good trash.

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    4. Ivan I remember reading the first gen script too, and the premise was interesting, but that title was awful. Edge of Tomorrow sounds more appealing than All You Need Is Kill. Here's hoping for that vintage Liman June summer movie.

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    5. Jumper was a really good novel. About 70% of the ideas didn't make it into the movie. They could have, but so much of the story got completely abandoned and I'm not sure why. Kind of like if Jurassic Park had gotten to the part when the power goes out and then everyone ended up just mud-riding for the rest of the movie. Entertaining, yet somehow hollow.

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  19. You know what might cure your guys' blues? A little film (and I use that term rather t vaguely) called Blended. After seeing that this weekend you'll probably get a better appreciation for every other movie coming out this year. Transformers sucked? Well at least it's not Blended. Tammy only had a couple laughs?... well at least it had a couple laughs, not just groans.

    So yes, skip that meaningless drivel that is Days of Future Past, and instead help contribute to Adam Sandler's next vacation, I mean work of art.

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  20. Hiya guys,

    Relatively new to the website and podcast but have listened to heaps in a short amount of time.
    Overall given the tremendous time, thought and effort that has gone into the site it's only right that I let you know how much of a fan I am.

    Every contributor from Patrick, JB, Adam and onwards has a friendly, intelligent and relaxed approach that just makes you guys so listen-toable.

    Love the choices for both written pieces and the podcasts and it's immediately apparent that you all are just anabashed movie lovers. There's something so refreshing about that.

    Love love love Patrick's open adoration for horror, action films and De Palma...(think I'm right on that?) and feel like even though I'm many a mile away in Australia we share more than a few similarities in taste.

    I don't agree with every review and opinion but it a testament to how likeable and entertaining the podcasts are that even when I disagree i'm more than happy to listen on and always eagerly await the next podcast.

    Keep up the brilliant work.

    Ps so so happy that you're promoting films like The Raid and it's sequel. Good lord I love them, and maybe just maybe you might consider a franchise related podcast for the Rocky series?

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    1. Thanks, Grant! We appreciate your nice words and the fact that you're a fan. We're thrilled to have you with us. You're absolutely right...I'm a huge DePalma nerd.

      We'll get a Rocky podcast in the rotation at some point! I know at least Mike is a huge fan of even the bad sequels.

      Thanks again for your comments. It means so much to all of us.

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    2. Another Aussie F head! Sweet. Where are you?

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  21. Pretty ironic that your Godzilla podcast doesn't start talking about Godzilla until about 21 minutes in!

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  22. Michael GiammarinoMay 21, 2014 at 7:24 PM

    I'd love to see you guys do a podcast for the entire Godzilla series. What are the chances of that?

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    1. Michael, I can't speak to a podcast, but I'm deep in the trenches on a column of that very thing. Stay tuned.

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    2. Michael GiammarinoMay 21, 2014 at 8:09 PM

      I can't wait to read it, sir!

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  23. Finally caught up with this one. Didn't enjoy it much. The whole time I was wishing for Hank Azaria's "Animal" to show up and inject some FUN into this dreary movie.

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    1. This speaks to my very peculiar taste at times but I think Hank Azaria's gf in Godzilla is a stone cold fox.

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    2. Great.. now I have to watch it again.. THANKS..

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  24. What a menage-a-trois of stupid.

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    1. We didn't like the thing you liked. Grow up.

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    2. Seconded. While I don't always agree with the opinions of the F This Movie staff / other F-heads, I would not describe any content as "Stupid."

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    3. Now, now. Maybe he meant Godzilla and the two MUTOs. Say what you will about the movie—that was a freaked-up threesome.

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    4. I for one embrace me, Patrick and JB's new nickname. When we team up again we can be referred to as the M-A-T-O-S instead of Marmalade Sandwich.

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  25. Patrick tweeted recently something to the effect of, "A bad review won't stop me from seeing a movie I want to see." That's why, even though I listened to most of this podcast, I still went and saw Godzilla tonight. What a fucking mess. I thought maybe going in with expectations lowered would help me enjoy it more than you all did but no, it felt just as tedious. I don't think I've ever derisively snorted during a movie so many times. Like JB I was forced to amuse myself with my own thoughts like: Godzilla's species should be called "canklesaurus". And: Did this movie invent the TV-set piece?

    How dare they compare this to my beloved Jaws - how fucking dare they!

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  26. 4000 complaints and 3995 were absolute BS complaints...

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    1. I'm glad you liked it dude - I wanted to so badly myself - but you have no right to call their complaints (which are much the same as mine) "absolute BS". I mean if I wanted to be an asshole like that, I'd say that anyone who isn't complaining lacks a fundamental understanding of good storytelling, but I understand some people just have different priorities when it comes to how they enjoy or don't enjoy a movie or what makes a good story to them. So save it - the only BS complaint here is yours.

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    2. I'll stand up for Anonymous. The hardest working commenter in millions of threads all across the Internet is entitled to an off day.

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    3. Good point, Erich - I apologize, Anonymous, I hope you feel better soon.

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  27. I can't remember the last movie that divided fans like Godzilla has... or maybe it was Man of Steel... Sorry, not sure if we can post Youtube links on here, but this discussion sums things up well. "Did Godzilla Suck?"

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uVOzAXC891M&list=PLFWHlH4koGZAeH9x2wWeTB32VCESjRI51

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  28. First time listener here. Be a pal, don't eat on the microphone? Thanks!

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  29. I don't know if someone already said this, but the complaint that Godzilla's fire-breath (that blue stuff is FIRE) attack on the last MUTO should have energised it rather than killed it: huh?? Radiation and fire are two very different things. The MUTOs are feeding off radiation, not the thermal explosion that would result from one of those nukes detonating - that would blow them to pieces, same as anything.

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  30. Oh wow, looks like you struck a nerve! I haven't read through all the comments, but the stuff about character cliches bear the top was fascinating. I think you really hit the nail on the head (speaking of cliches...) with the "if the monster is in the background then the foreground characters have to be interesting." That's my major complaint. I actually liked the film on the whole though simply because I weigh the stuff you talked about differently or whatever (we see the same movie, but I like it where you don't). Something about Adam really made me laugh in this one (I feel your pain, I think). Love the three-way, and thought it was funny that you all ended up disliking it anyway. Onwards through the G's!

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    1. Dang it, why can't you edit comments in blogspot hosting? I have the same thing on my site and I can't stand it. That should say "character cliches *near* the top".

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  31. I cut the movie some slack. I didn't regret seeing it but would probably only watch the Godzilla scenes, which are very very good Godzilla scenes, if I wanted to revisit it. I think of the movie as being a decently directed picture with a very poor screenplay. Garruth Edwards created some great visual moments and seems to have done the best he could with what he had. Perhaps he could have squeezed out a longer action scene but I was fine with the ending that I got.

    Adam brought up Cloverfield, and I have to say that I fucking hated that movie. I agree with the sentiment that "if the monster is in the background then the foreground characters have to be interesting" but I didn't find the characters interesting in Cloverfield, I found them excrutiatingly annoying. This is not to say that the characters in Godzilla were interesting, I felt like they were pretty flat in a way that I could just kind of brush off. It's the difference between waiting in line to see something you want to see vs waiting in a line full of crying children to see something you want to see.

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