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Godzilla (1998)
star Printer-Friendly version
Review Date: May 20, 1998
Director: Roland Emmerich
Writer: Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich
Producers: Dean Devlin
Actors:
Matthew Broderick as Nick Tatopoulos
Hank Azaria as Animal
Jean Reno as Phillippe Roche
Plot:
Nuclear radiation turns an ordinary lizard into a gigantic 500-foot+ beast. The giant monster roams into New York City, and consequently terrifies and squashes many of its "innocent" inhabitants. The US military, along with a nuclear radiation specialist (Broderick) are out to stop this freakish abnormality from taking over. Mayhem and crazy special effects ensue.
Critique:
"Been there, seen that" was my main reaction after the conclusion of this film. This kind of picture may have been incredibly inventive and original a few years back (think JURASSIC PARK (7/10)), but now it's nothing more than a rehashed carnival of special effects. Okay, admittedly the special effects are still quite spectacular, taped alongside their partnered action sequences, but the crust of any film still lies in its overall story line, and this pie just doesn't have much cream to it, boys and girls. Standard characters conveying contrived movie feelings through icky standard dialogue. The story is basically this: Monster bad. Kill monster. And that's about it.

Other than that, the writers attempt to squeeze in another cheezy romance between two bad actors (Broderick's career peaked and ended at FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF (8/10), give up the day job, dude, you're done!), and a bunch of characters who have to disagree with the theories of the "always-right" scientist. Smack that all together, and you've got yourself another special effects airball of a movie! By the way, is there any reason why the President of the United States of America didn't get involved in this giant beast's destructive path through New York City, while the French secret service made this mission their top priority in life?? (Okay, so they kind of explain the French involvement, but where the heck was the Prez through this unthinkable disaster??).

For movie fanatics, watch for the fun-poking of Siskel & Ebert throughout the entire picture by the way of Mayor Ebert and his assistant Gene. In the end, the film does lengthen itself out by means of another standard monster flic scenario ("Someone" re-emerges. Guess who? Yawn.), and does end with the perpetual open door to an obvious sequel, but that's about it. If you're in the mood to see a crazy monster running loose in New York City and nothing more, then check into this movie. If you're looking for something more interesting and original to watch, I suggest you skip this over-hyped puppy, and warm your nachos for several other interesting salsas to come on this summer's fiesta line-up of films.
(c) 2017 Berge Garabedian
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