When I was five years old I watched the original godzilla. And I loved it. A giant fifty feet tall monster walking around Tokyo breathing heat stuff. What's not to love? That sparked an obsession within me that still burns to this day. I went home and immediately forced my parents into sourcing any and every monster or kaiju related movies or TV shows. Sure, most of them were in Japanese and i couldn't understand, but Godzilla and Mecca-Godzilla going at each other hammer and tongs is a universal language for any five year old. i even had a couple of kaiju toys for recreating moments in my own room.
Unfortunately, that area has somewhat lost its magic since i hit double digits. Not because i realised the movies were bad, i still enjoy them, but now i'm older, i'm more cynical, and the movies haven't matured with me (no duh). So every time i go back to watch Godzilla, i'm disappointed because i remember being awed by it in a way Star Wars never really did. And i still have that capacity in me to be awed, as i said before, the flame of childhood still burns bright to this day.
So you'll imagine how excited i was when a new American remake was coming out with realistic special effects. Could this re-ignite the flame of my childhood and restore the king of kaiju to his rightful place in my heart? No. It was crap. It hurt me to watch it and i'm not gonna go into it cause that'll remind of the wounds. But there was no original to hold onto like a militant purist. Where did i look to for kaiju thrills? Relief came from an unexpected place: Pacific Rim. It was everything i wanted AND everything i needed. The CGI was spectacular, the giant punch-ups were just... so... AWESOME, and the characters were sufficiently cliched and/or anime-like, yet real enough to make the movie feel like a golden age kaiju movie while still appealing to the non eight-year-old in me that was having the time of his life. The kaiju were so intricately designed and brought to life so beautifully that i was willing to overlook all of its flaws because i was just having too much damn fun. It was very, very far from the best film last year, but it definitely went down as my favorite one.
Pacific Rim has rekindled (yeah, how many times can you fit a fire analogy in) my hope for kaiju films. I purposely DIDN'T get it on dvd so that watching it would feel special. And now a new Godzilla movie is coming out... and it looks EPIC! I mean, Bryan Cranston is in it. Are we entering a new age where my childhood is coming back full circle? Am i going to be able to relive it in a new way that's just as fun? I damn well hope so, but if the new Godzilla is a disappointment then someone is gonna damn well pay.
Never stop lovin' movies or kaiju guys!