Movie Preview – GODZILLA (2014)

9 04 2014

Godzilla (Legendary Pictures - 2014)

Four years, four years of waiting have finally come to a point. What started off as a rumour, then a green light then about two maybe three years’ worth of waiting finally came to a head this past December, and finally we are now on the final stretch. In just over a months’ time, the biggest, film of the year finally arrives. To quote a trailer from 15 years ago –

“HIS POWER IS UNEQUALED, HIS BATTLES ARE LEGENDARY, HIS RETURN IS NEAR”.

Yes it really has been four years of waiting for this film to come out (even though in retrospect it has been 10 years). Since 1998 when the world was, well, blotted by the appearance of a film which was directed by a man who was hot off the presses with a sci-fi film that at the time was the second highest grossing film in history, wanting to do something else but was given another film to do, and did everything wrong; when the name of a certain cultural icon was said it was met by enthusiasm from those who were fans, but then disappointment bursted in when those who spoke that word, meant the above stated 1998 incarnation, and because of this blot on the previously stated cultural icon, it has been a hard life. Now though, things are surely going to be a lot different for many years to come when people say the word Godzilla.

Godzilla 1954 - Present

While I could go into the history of what has happened in the leading up to this, this is a preview not a nostalgia thingy. So, here goes.

Godzilla Beach

Produced by Legendary Pictures in Association with Warner Bros. and of course TOHO. This new Godzilla film is a reboot to the American Godzilla series that was somewhat planned in 1996. Legendary Pictures CEO Thomas Tull has stated many a time that this film is going to be done properly, like what a fan of Godzilla will want to see. Of course the film will do away with the iconic suit-motion for CGI but the design of the creature will follow the design of the iconic TOHO beast. The film is directed by Gareth Edwards whose directorial debut was back in 2010 with Monsters, which afterwards he was given this job. The story is provided by Expendables Writer David Callahan with Max Borenstein putting the flesh and muscles as well as doses of radiation to the story with extra help here and there provided by Batman Begins writer David S. Goyer and The Shawshank Redemption director; Frank Darabont. The story as stated by Legendary Pictures states that the film will be;

“An epic rebirth to Toho’s iconic Godzilla, this spectacular adventure pits the world’s most famous monster against malevolent creatures who, bolstered by humanity’s scientific arrogance, threaten our very existence”.

In many a way as well as confirmed by the acting and production teams, this film will return to the roots of the original 1954 film, but brought into the present but will honour and respect the important values of the title monster including his connections to the horror as well as the destructive power of nuclear weapons while not forgetting mans desirable idea to control nature but always ultimately failing.

Godzilla 2014 Nuclear

The films cast is made up of an interesting blend of actors including Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Bryan Cranston, Elizabeth Olsen, Juliette Binoche, Ken Watanabe, Sally Hawkins and David Strathairn as well as a planned cameo appearance from Godzilla Veteran Akira Takarada. The films score is being produced by Alexandre Desplat who has worked on The King’s Speech and the last two harry potter films and describes the soundtrack as a “non-stop fortissimo, with lots of brass, Japanese drums, and electric violin”. I wonder if we are going to get some Akira Ifukube music as well?

Bryan Cranston and Aaron Taylor-Johnson

From what has so far been shown via the teasers, this film is going to be unlike any film since possibly Jaws. The trailers tease at the fact that there is something there but rarely show the creature himself. The trailers show a path of destruction sweeping throughout the entire world with connotations from nuclear testing in the 1950’s which leads to that brilliant line from Ken Watanabe’s character (Dr Serizawa, the name of a character from the original 1954 film):

“They were trying to kill it”.

This wave of disaster then erupts with shots from places around the world including a nuclear power plant collapsing, tidal waves and San Francisco on fire. Throughout the trailers also is a soundtrack of something horrifying as well as mysterious meaning that something is leading up to something horrifying, destructive and unstoppable. And that is when we finally see, sometimes just an outline, other times a good glimpse of the BIG G himself with an impressive, if maybe new; almighty roar.

Then there is the other monsters. We know that there is going to be more than one monster. Yes, Godzilla will be fighting two monsters whose identities are still as yet unknown. What we do know, is that they are both being called MUTO’s and neither of them will have any relation (as far as we can tell) to any TOHO Monster. So probably no King Ghidorah………this time. From the trailer though we can see two distinct objects, one in the sky looking like a bird and another which might be a giant spider. And while that does sound like Rodan and Kumonga, I highly doubt that they are.

Kumonga and Rodan

With new information and mini trailer snippets now becoming more and more common, we know that the film is only weeks away now. From everything that has been reported and shown to this date, it is clear that this is a film that cannot go past anyone’s gaze and while there is still the uncertainty of whether or not this film might just go as a repeat to the 1998 incident, there is one thing we can be sure of, that Legendary are doing it properly, even the title character looks like his Japanese Ancestor.

2014 Monster

GODZILLA IS BACK.

GENEPOOL





It Took The God Out Of Godzilla – Godzilla (1998)

5 03 2014

Godzilla 1998 (TriStar Pictures - 1998)

Yes, it’s true, this is my review of the 1998 Godzilla film. Well I thought that with the new film coming out (which I hope will correct everything that went ‘horribly wrong’ with the 1998 film) I would take the opportunity to review this film. Now, bear in mind, while I could state (over and over again) why this film is not a Godzilla film, I (hopefully) will try to keep it short as not to bore you and aim to delve more deeply into why the 1998 Godzilla is not a Godzilla film in a few weeks’ time.

Godzilla 1954

I was actually very excited back in 1998 to the release of the 1998 Godzilla film (obviously given the date). I remember hearing way back in 1996 on a films programme (I think it was on Channel 4) stating the film was due for release in 1998, and had a picture of the Japanese Monster himself. So I had memorized the date, so come 1998, I was really looking forward to what was coming. BBC TWO even had a one-off night in celebration of the upcoming film called Monster Night with a documentary on the history of Godzilla, monster fights and two amazing films: King Kong (1976) and the Fantastic Godzilla vs King Ghidorah, One of the best. There was lots of clips (including the “It’s Pregnant” scene, revealing a pivotal plot point before the film’s release; Thanks) and trailers for the film being shown on other shows too including Blue Peter. Then came the film itself (directed by Roland Emmerich I should add), and I quite enjoyed it (at first), it had ‘the creature’ and to begin with I thought it was quite good (although to be fair, I was only 9 years old). It is only the intervening years when I read and discovered more in the film series, that I began to discover the flaws, and some recent viewings have also changed my thoughts on the film, greatly, so prepare for a review, 16 years in the making (sounds like Jurassic Park doesn’t it).

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The film begins in an old 1950’s/1960’s documentary style video showing something happening in French Polynesia. In time this becomes a video of the test of a Nuclear Weapon (Amazing Scene combined with the soundtrack). After the test dies down, a solitary Iguana’s egg seemingly has survived as the rain arrives. A few decades later a Japanese fish processing vessel is attacked by an unknown entity, with claws and a tail. In Chernobyl meanwhile, a biologist called Dr. Nicko “Nick” Tatopoulos (Matthew Broderick) is playing with Earthworms when two men arrive (one of them being Glenn Morshower) telling him that he has been re-assigned. In Tahiti a group of Frenchmen arrive at a hospital where they talk to a survivor of the vessel accident who is at first reserved to talk to them, but when the lead Frenchman (Jean Reno) manages to get the survivor’s attention, the survivor says “Gojira”. Nick Tatopoulos arrives by military escort in Panama and is introduced to Colonel Hicks (Kevin Dunn) and tries to explain to the Colonel why he was studying worms and is led into a Giant Footprint. He meets Dr. Elsie Chapman (Vicki Lewis) and Dr. Mendel Craven (Malcolm Danare) who are studying the footprints.

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In Manhattan New York, a young woman named Audrey Timmons (Maria Pitillo) who works for a New York News Channel alongside Lucy Palotti (Arabella Field) dreams of being a reporter and asks her boss Charles Caiman (Harry Shearer) if there has been any news on a potential future job, which there appears not to be. In Jamaica the science and military team stumble upon the wreck of the fishing vessel, where the Frenchmen are also. The lead from earlier introduces himself to Colonel Hicks saying he is an insurance agent. Colonel Hicks orders him out of the area, and while doing so, the lead spots Nick briefly before walking off. Off the eastern seaboard meanwhile three fishing trawlers get pulled underwater, this is reported to Colonel Hicks, with Elsie thinking that this thing is some long-lost dinosaur, but nick suggests that the creature is an entirely new species. A fisherman goes down to Manhattan Harbor in the pouring rain, and seemingly catches something big which then robs the man of his fishing rod. Out at sea the man sees a giant wave come towards him, with two big spikes coming out of the water. Out of the water comes a titanic beast which goes on a rampage of the fishing area of Manhattan. During this time, Mayor Ebert (Michael Lerner) and his assistant Gene (Lorry Goldman) are speaking at a rally, as large thuds are heard with mini earthquakes, this is followed by the creature crashing the session. In a Manhattan Café, Audrey, Lucy, and Lucy’s wife Victor “Animal” Palotti (Hank Azaria) are discussing Audrey’s nice attitude before moving onto Audrey’s old boyfriend Nick who she spots on the TV with the Army. The thuds arrive and the creature’s feet are seen moving past the building. Animal grabs his camera and chases after it, only to be almost trodden by it.

The Military and Science team arrive in Manhattan after the creature seemingly vanishes. Hicks is introduced to Sergeant O’Neil (Doug Savant) who states the creature just disappeared, Nick meanwhile doesn’t think so, then there is a report on the incident, with footage from Animal. At the news company, Animal is heralded as a hero, and Audrey steals Caiman’s Press badge. The Mayor meanwhile tries to get a hold of the situation, only for the Lead Frenchman to put a microphone on him. An underground scene of destruction is found, believing the creature went through it. Nick suggests that the creature is just an animal and when a fish is found, a plan is put into place to lure the creature out and kill it. This leads to the creature coming into full view for the first time, and burping at Nick. The creature eats all the fish and is then attacked by the army, who are unsuccessful in dealing with it. Audrey and Nick meet each other for the first time in years and grab a coffee at the base, where nick discovers the creature may be pregnant. As he goes off to do more testing, Audrey steals a tape of confidential footage in an attempt to make a quick name for herself.

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The military searches the city without much look, Nick tells the Army of his findings just when Audrey’s report comes on, which has been stolen by Caiman and names the creature Godzilla. Nick is kicked off the team, but implores Lucy to get hicks to search for the eggs. Audrey tries to apologize to Nick, who doesn’t want to listen. Nick heads for the airport, secretly followed by animal, which leads to Nick being kidnapped by the lead Frenchman who introduces himself as Philippe Roaché and is taken to an old warehouse full of weapons. The Frenchmen are agents of the DGSE (Directorate-General for External Security), the French intelligence agency. They have been watching the whole incident with a close eye in the hope of covering up their country’s role in the incident. They plan to look for the creature’s nest. Back in New York, Animal convinces Audrey to go with him, and follow the Frenchmen. In the sewers where the fish was found earlier, Godzilla appears to the search team who, after avoiding him, trace the creature’s steps. In Manhattan the military put a new plan into action to kill Godzilla by luring him into the open, this plan seemingly fails and Godzilla is chased into the Hudson river where he is seemingly killed by a couple of submarines.

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In the sewers, the search arrives at Madison Square Garden where over 200 eggs are discovered and when trying to destroy them, they all hatch. The creatures attack the search team and Animal and Audrey thinking they are food. After meeting up with each other (minus several Frenchmen who have all been eaten) the four people send a message to the military and the outside world telling them the building must be destroyed. Fighters are sent and the four just barely get out of the building. Then Godzilla arrives, not dead after all and sees the group next to the dead bodies of his hatchlings. He chases after the group, driving past a military escort who are seemingly going to Madison Square Garden. Nick manages to contact O’Neil and after a couple of minutes in Godzilla’s mouth, they lead the creature to the Brooklyn Bridge where he is entangled in it and attacked by fighters. Godzilla dies, The city celebrates, Audrey quits her job and Philippe disappears. Back in Madison Square Garden, One Egg survives, then hatches.

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Godzilla’s Cast is a bit of an oddball selection of both good and bad. Matthew Broderick’s character is generally quite annoying and rather than being the lead human appears, initially and majority, a piece of comedy relief. While he does make up for it at the end of the film by being more intelligent than his character is meant to be as well as compassionate towards those around him, but it feels a bit too late for him, and I think the running joke that no one can appear to pronounce his character’s last name is a bit overdone. Maria Pitillo’s character on the other hand is actually quite likeable as in her character develops as the film goes on and at least is honest for the majority. While attitude is something that is ‘apparently’ needed in Manhattan, her character is best when she is just herself and there is a nice on-screen presence whenever she is around, even if she is the somewhat combination of the purposed damsel in distress/love interest. In many a sense, she is a tougher character than Broderick’s character. Hank Azaria’s character is seemingly also a Comedy Relief, but deep down he is a good character as in he is more a sense of reasoning among the characters as he is more down to earth than everyone else and is comedic look and acting is more about him being him and not comedic for the purpose of it. Jean Reno’s character though is the top dog of the film’s human main cast. He gives off a great performance as a secret agent and he physically looks intimidating as he does not appear to smile. It’s like he is hiding something and while there are hints here and there, he gets a proper reveal and is a serious man as he does it, not one who takes his position lightly.

Broderick, Pitillo, Azaria, Reno

The main standouts though, are the film’s supporting characters. Sergeant O’Neil has a sense of being comedic as it shows he is a bit clumsy, making his character seem on par or equal with Nick, but as a character, he is far better than Nick as Nick is like a stereotypical Nerd while O’Neil is a professional soldier and much more likeable as a result. Colonel Hicks is well-played and is one of the films standouts. He gives the appearance of a well-trained soldier and officer but deep down has a calm and understandable side to him making him likeable to those around him, and a much more preferable person in dealing in a situation than any ordinary soldier or officer. Lucy Palotti is very likeable despite her wild exterior. While she plays the sort of agony aunt character type wife to Animal, she shows great control over her emotions and can be a calm reassuring person deep down and that’s why she is so likeable.

Savant, Dunn, Field

But it’s not just them; some of the film’s most appealing characters off to the side are the film’s extras. While the French Spies are almost like the Frogs from Flushed Away (ok, it was 8 years later) as in they are almost made fun of as to what they do, they are quite nicely played. Some of the best though are in the military scenes, such as the Utah Submarine Captain (Derek Webster) and his number two, The Anchorage Captain (David Pressman), The Navy Admiral (Richard Gant), The Helicopter pilot in the second attack on Godzilla and also the army man Nick and Philippe encounter as they re-enter New York. Added to that you have Glenn Morshower’s brief appearance and the two Japanese men on the bridge of the fishing vessel when it goes down. In many a sense, it is the little touches or in this cases appearances that help.

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The film’s special effects, well those for Godzilla anyway, are outstanding. As good as Jurassic Park in my opinion, particularly when you include the scenes of the whole creature in full view, such as his initial attack on Manhattan, first full sighting and the second attack on him including the moment when the soldier looks down at him and when he is walking through the streets as well as his close up with the military personnel. The sound effects during this point help too. His roar is that of like Godzilla but he also makes some interesting, more like animal sounds too, giving him a bit of depth. The Eggs though, and most of the CGI Babies though are pretty atrocious, even for then. Godzilla looked Awesome in this film, how come the kiddies did not look the same and are at best when they are animatronics. Ok, while the eggs are not CGI but real, they do look like cardboard (I wonder if the same company worked on Les Miserables).

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The soundtrack (provided by David Arnold and Michael Lloyd) is not too bad either, there are times when the music lacks some depth such as the secret spy/French scenes and is somewhat lack luster, but when you take, the reveal scene of the creature halfway through, the keyboard has a sense of Phantom of the Opera about it, like a grand reveal or realization about it like this is something to behold. Another case is that of the opening titles which add an element of mystery followed by cold realized horror of what was happening, which was then followed by a sense of cold mystery and intrigue as the egg stands alone and then there is the pursuit style theme for the submarine attack also (not forgetting the soundtrack provided by Puff Daddy‘s; Come With Me remix of the Led Zeppelin Song Kashmir).

So now we move on to the down side. While I have stated that I will talk about this in more detail at a later time, I still need to at least cover the basics. The films main problem is that title: “GODZILLA”. With the idea that an American Godzilla film could happen where the biggest budgets could create an amazing film as well as show Godzilla to a potentially wider audience, it doesn’t exactly help when the creature in the film is not Godzilla. Godzilla is a giant monster, a metaphor for the destruction caused by nuclear power, a force of nature itself, Mother Nature putting her foot down and saying “enough” to man destroying the world. In comparison the creature in this film is just an animal, an animal just trying to live, acts like an animal, thinks like an animal and…..reproduces like an animal.  With the hope of big special effects for a legendary monster, what we got instead was a giant Iguana that is also a lot smaller than the original creature. While the destruction and panic caused by him was there, it was not completely there, as while he had the trademark dorsal spines, he was bent over like a T-Rex instead of up straight and without his famous Atomic Breath. This film in this case is ‘not really a Godzilla film at all’; it is just a Monster Movie with a famous name attached to it (sort of like the Karate Kid film a few years ago).

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Despite this though, the film does have some great scenes. The opening credits showing the full force of a nuclear weapon, something that is hardly shown in Cinema at all. The fishing scene is nicely made and the opening rampage is like that of a disaster movie but does not reveal the monster early on and just teases the audience with him (much like the character of Mayor Ebert’s name). then the grand appearance by him followed later on by the appearance by him for the second attack, plus the entire second attack including the scenes with the submarines.

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The Madison Square Garden nest scene though feels to be completely pointless and un-needed except for a reveal that Godzilla was not destroyed by the torpedoes. It just feels completely un-needed for this reason and feels like it is just there to fill up time. It also sort of lowers the tone of the film, the idea that there is something scary in Manhattan, something horrifying, and the idea that this scene’s tone has been lowered to allow some form of Family Friendliness for the whole family, instead of a proper action film if not a complete Monster Film.

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While it is slightly disappointing what has happened to this film due to its name, as a Monster Film it is rather enjoyable and even after 16 years, still looks pretty good. It has an interesting cast, some great scenes, and a good soundtrack. So while I can say that it is enjoyable, I will say this, and it is a bit predictable (by this point), don’t treat it like a Godzilla film, it isn’t, treat it as something different, and Let Godzilla move on from this and enjoy a potential new life in the eye of American cinema.

GENEPOOL





Godzilla News – Main Trailer

26 02 2014

Godzilla 2014 (Legendary Pictures - 2014)

Back in early December, if you had your eyes on YouTube or at the same time, this blog, you may have seen this (alternatively if you had not been looking at YouTube or this blog, you may not have seen this).

That’s right, the first trailer for the new Legendary Pictures Godzilla film. The trailer depicted a bunch of paratroopers falling out of the sky and descending upon San Francisco when a large shadow is spotted. The trailer then showed other scenes from the upcoming film including scenes of the films cast before showing a dusty image with something moving behind it then roaring. Well almost three months have passed but now a new and main trailer for the biggest film this year was released yesterday. Well, let’s not hang about, let’s take a look.

The new trailer looks amazing. It opens up with a conversation, ok, more like rambling from one of the film’s main cast; Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston, and one other unidentified character. He talks of something that is coming, with scenes of mass devastation to put meat on the bones. Then there are water shots of water’s rising and flooding a city. This is then followed on by talk from Ken Watanabe who talks to another as yet unidentified character about something that appeared in 1954 (interesting choice of date) and that the testing of nuclear weapons in the area were attempts to kill the thing and not actually tests. The trailer then shows more scenes of devastation with planes falling out of the sky, giant explosions in the distance, san Francisco on fire, giant animal bones. And then it all wraps up with city scenes, a giant roar and the appearance of the film’s main star.

Godzilla 1954

The trailer is amazing It, in itself is a teaser trailer as the film talks about something, something coming, something that appeared, something they tried to kill, it then shows scenes of devastation plus a soundtrack which sounds absolutely horrifying, then build into this little teaser’s or tasters of a creature of gigantic proportions, and not just big, REALLY BIG, and then wrap it all off with his blood curdling roar, and then an appearance from him. We got something mega special with the teaser trailer a few months ago, this just adds to it.

Godzilla Beach

There is now less than three months to go until this film is released, but already, I am impressed, both as a viewer and a Godzilla fan. It is still going to be a case of wait until the film comes out and then see what happens; but already, I think it’s better than that 1998 film, and that is a good sign.

Godzilla San Francisco

GENEPOOL (Any chance of seeing his atomic breath anytime soon?).





Top 10 Most Exciting Films in 2014

22 01 2014

Film Reel 2014

You may remember that last year when writing this post for last years films, I stated (more like implied) that 2013 was going to be rubbish compared to 2014. Well, since then the world has sort of changed a bit. Jurassic Park 4 (Jurassic World) has been pushed back to 2015, but at least it looks like it is finally going to happen at long last and Seventh Son which was due for release last year has now been pushed back to 2015 despite the fact that the trailer has already been released (which means the film is probably finished). When looking at the films due for release this year, I came to the point of realisation that there is only about 10 in total which look exciting (at least to me). While there is the upcoming Divergent which may apply to my interest, I don’t know much about it other than it being based on a book, which I got a mini supplement of when I went to see The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, which I still have to read (the supplement not The Hunger Games: Catching Fire). I am also not planning on watching Captain America: The Winter Soldier or the next Amazing Spider-man film either. Even the bottom two at the time of compiling the list, I was unsure about, however the top 8 films look promising. So while the selection of films due for release is relatively short, the quality of the top lot, looks fantastic and so this could be one of those few years where quality takes over quantity.

Muppets Most Wanted (Walt Disney Pictures - 2014)

10. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Muppets Most Wanted – These are the bottom two films I mentioned in the above paragraph. They share this spot due to me being very unsure about them. Firstly, The Muppets. This is the sequel to The Muppets from 2012. Quite a good film all in all and very enjoyable and so when the sequel was announced I was already excited. This all changed though when I found out who was in the film; Ricky Gervais. The problem I have with him being in this film in particular is that I don’t think he can act all that well. My opinion on him being in it has lowered my expectations for the film overall. I did though see a trailer for the film a few weeks ago, and his position in the film is more clear, however, I am still very unsure.

TMNT (Imagi Animation Studios - 2007)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles though sounded promising. My hope was that it was going to be like TMNT back in 2007. Brilliant piece of Animation and a generally fun film. I had hopes of this happening again, then I found on-set pictures; its live action. This has me in a nervous position. Either it could be, and probably will be CGI creatures, which would be a good thing, or if they are suits, it could be a bad thing. My opinion is still split, but who knows, it might work, or it might be the silliest film of the year, but on the bright side of all this, Michael Bay is producing it, and he did do a Great Job with Transformers.

Edge Of Tomorrow (Village Roadshow Pictures - 2014)

9. Edge of Tomorrow – Another film I am also not so sure about, but at the moment appears to have more legs than the above two films. I don’t know much about this other than from what I have read and saw in the trailer. The film stars Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt and is based on the Japanese Novel All You Need Is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka and appears to be set in the not too distant future where Man appears to be at war with some alien race known as Mimics. However, Mr. Cruise is constantly caught in a time loop and keeps returning to battle all the while dying. From my first impressions, it does sound silly, but after watching the trailer, it brought me to think about Battle Los Angeles, and in particular the trailer for it. It got my interest just enough, to be excited about it. While I still don’t know all that much about the film, it does show a little promise, and who knows, it may be a great film after all.

Transcendence (Alcon Entertainment - 2014)

8. Transcendence – The directorial debut of Christopher Nolan‘s long time Cinematographer; Wally Pfister. Not much is yet known about this film other than a basic plot line. Basically Johnny Depp is an Artificial Intelligence researcher who is targeted by technology terrorists but this pushes him in his research, which as he continues makes him want to be a part of it. Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara and Morgan Freeman will also be staring and Christopher Nolan will be producing the film. Pfister is a great Cinematographer, as shown with his work alongside Nolan, but what is he going to be like as a Director. Well, it is more than likely that Nolan will be helping him along the way. Transcendence does look promising on all counts, but it is still a mystery and only time will tell if Pfister will be any good as a Director (especially seeing as I am getting the feeling that this is a sort of Black Sheep of all the films being released this year).

Interstellar (Syncopy - 2014)

7. Interstellar – Christopher Nolan returns with a brand new film starring Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway. Details of the film are being kept under wraps. The basic plot revolves around the opening of a wormhole allowing the human race to travel large distances and explore space. Sounds like a good version of Star Trek. While Details are currently sketchy, the simple fact that Nolan is Directing a new film is enough to get me excited.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (20th Century Fox - 2014)

6. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – After the success of the wonderful Rise of the Planet of the Apes back in 2011, it is nice to see that they are going ahead with this series, and that it has nothing in common with the Tim Burton Planet of the Apes about 13 years ago. Andy Serkis returns as the role of Caesar with a whole new male cast including Gary Oldman and Keri Russell and new Director in the form of Matt Reeves. Eight years have passed by since a deadly virus emerged and Caesar and his race of genetically altered Apes have reached a truce with a band of human survivors, however war is on the horizon to determine the new dominant species. With a great first film in a potentially new series, this film shows a lot of hope, and while it is very different to most of the films being released in 2014, that doesn’t mean it is an outsider in any shape or form, it actually has great potential in becoming one of the hit films of 2014.

Transformers: Age of Extinction (Paramount Pictures - 2014)

5. Transformers: Age of Extinction – I am a big fan of the Transformers series. Since watching the first one in 2007, I have been a loyal fan of the series. While I do prefer Megan Fox’s character over that of Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s, to me, the main part of these films are the machines themselves. This time around though, it is a brand new cast (except for Peter Cullen of course), but thankfully not a reboot. It is Mark Wahlberg who takes the centre stage this time around with Michael Bay returning to direct. Not much is known about the plot so far and there is yet to be a trailer, but the title sounds interesting.

X-Men: Days of Future Past (20th Century Fox - 2014)

4. X-Men: Days of Future Past – The Sequel to one of the best Marvel films to date. X-Men Days of Future Past brings together the cast of X-Men: First Class with that of the original X-Men Trilogy plus some new characters to the film series including Bishop (but sadly no sign of Gambit). The film appears to take the point of view in three dimensions, that of the original trilogy, the future and the past. James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender return alongside their older counterparts, Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen for the parts of Professor X and Magneto. Hugh Jackman and Ellen Page return as Wolverine and Kitty Pryde (sadly Anna Paquin‘s scene has apparently been cut) along with Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique. This time The X-Men are facing potential extinction from the human race and must travel back in time to prevent the future from happening. The cast is great and it deals with one of the best known stories in comic books. Days of Future Past, looks to be the best Comic Book film of the year, I am really excited about this one.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay (Book)

3. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 – The series continues as Katniss Everdeen played by the terrific Jennifer Lawrence returns as the unlikely symbol of the suppressed regions of Panem and lead them into battle in the hope of bringing down the Capitol. Alongside Jennifer Lawrence, series regulars Liam Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson return alongside the Legendary Donald Sutherland as well as new cast members including Julianne Moore. While I don’t like the idea of two films being made for the final book for the basis of money, I do like the fact that it is going to be in two parts……….because it prolongs the series. I have yet to read the third book, but the films and books are working in tandem quite well producing a great experience and from what the series has produced so far, I can’t wait for more.

The Host (ShowBox - 2006)

2. The Host 2 – Here we are again. Talk of a sequel to the magnificent 2006 South Korean Monster Movie directed by Bong Joon-ho; The Host (or Gwoemul as it is sometimes known) have been going round since 2007. It is very hard to find information on the sequel, mostly due to a film released in 2013 under the same name but shares no similarities with the far better South Korean film. But on the odd occasion where I am able to find information on the film, the release date for it points to this year. So with some hope, we should finally see the sequel/prequel to one of the best films of the last decade. It is likely of course to be released in South Korea first of course, but with hope there should at least a limited release due to the film’s popularity overseas. While I can’t provide definite information other than the plan for the film to actually happen, I really do hope this film comes out sooner rather than later. If you have not seen the first film, I recommend you do.

Godzilla 2014 (Legendary Pictures - 2014)

1. Godzilla – After long last, the Legendary Pictures Godzilla film is finally going to be released this year. After about 4 years of waiting, when the announcement came that Legendary had been given permission to do it, Godzilla is set to return to the big screen. This film (thankfully) has no relation to the 1998 film and is related to that of the original Japanese Monster. So far details of the plot have yet to be announced but it is stated that Godzilla will be fighting two other monsters and that the Big Lizard himself will look like the original Toho Monster. Just a couple of months ago, the first trailer was released, and it looks Fantastic, only a silhouette of Godzilla can be spotted in it, but it looks like he should. Along side the King of the Monsters, the film stars Bryan Cranston, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Ken Watanabe and apparently a cameo appearance from Akira Takarada (who appeared in the original film Sixty years ago). Providing that Gareth Edwards brings the film together, Godzilla will no longer have his name tarnished by a film in the late 1990′s, and possibly, a great film to celebrate his 60th Anniversary. 2014 is the year of The King of the Monsters.

GENEPOOL





Godzilla News – Trailer

11 12 2013

Godzilla (2014 - Legendary Pictures)

“His power is unequalled. His battles are Legendary. His return is near”

- Godzilla 2000 Trailer.

It has been almost 4 years now since the announcement that Legendary Pictures had received the rights from Toho to produce a new American Godzilla film. When the announcement was first made, statements were also made stating how this Godzilla was going to be more true to the Japanese Monster than to that American Impersonator. Well after almost 4 years of brief pieces of news here and footage and news exclusively at ComicCon, the first trailer to the new film has just been launched. Take a look:

The trailer has an odd premise as you’d expect it to be like most trailers in its buildup however this one involves, for most of the trailer, one scene. a scene of paratroopers falling from the sky. As they descend they eventually arrive just above what appears to be San Francisco, which seems to be engulfed in flames. Through the mask of one of these paratroopers a faint outline of a Titanic Monster can be seen. The trailer then shows some bits here and there of the film including shots of some of the films actors including Ken Watanabe (Inception, The Last Samurai) and Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad). the trailer then returns to a smoky, dusty image with something big black and dark moving behind it before seeing a better look of the creature and then hearing its roar.

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The most important aspect of this new film of course is the big lizard himself. From what I could see from the trailer, the scale is there as in he appears to be as Gigantic as he is portrayed in the original series. His trademark scales are there, looking imposing as well as terrifying but then when we see the creature in a much better outline, he looks amazing. Only time will really tell what the overall creature looks like, but already, he looks like the Great Monster that we have all come to know and love.

With the release of Pacific Rim (Also by Legendary Pictures) taking part earlier this year, with the amount of scale of the great robotic and monstrous hulks in that film, we can rest assured that for the time at least, things are looking up and while the new Godzilla film is not due out for another 6 months, this has given us plenty of opportunities to wet our appetites in anticipation, and as we get closer to the launch date, there is sure to be a more comprehensive trailer as well as possibly what the final design of the creature.

godzilla2014_poster2[1]

GENEPOOL (The trailer does make me somewhat think of the trailer for Godzilla 2000 as well as a level in Battlefield 3).








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