Godzilla is one of the most highly recognisable Japanese icon worldwide and this August, it is back in Shin Godzilla “Godzilla Resurgence”. Directed by Shinji Higuchi, who also spearheaded Attack of the Titans (2015), and anime veteran Hideaki Anno, Shin Godzilla is an irrefutable proof that the Japanese owns the icon and is able to bring back the monster closest to its classic self.
Just within minutes into the movie, Godzilla rose from the waters and began its way across Japan. Then, it was a pre-evolved form of a sea creature with buldging round eyes, incapable of walking upright. As days progressed, with reentry into the waters, Japanese authorities soon realise that the monster was capable of rapid evolution into an impenetrable radioactive monster. And unlike previous predecessors, this Godzilla has evolved to shoot out deadly laser beam from its back and mouth, slicing through every building or machinery in the way. One can only gasp at the might of this beast as it paced towards Tokyo.
Unlike past Godzillas which were violent and actively destroying cities in their way, Shin Godzilla seemed rather stiff and unresponsive to its surroundings and earthling creatures which were screaming for their lives. In fact, I might have become sympathetic towards the creature. After all, it had once lived off nuclear waste in the waters and perhaps, merely left the waters in search for another place to stay. The beast also kept me entertained as it evolved from a flabby sea creature to the scaly upright monster capable of shooting purple laser beams (a colour symbolising death in Japanese culture). What’s more, it constantly held a nonchalant attitude towards the Japanese citizens as it strode across Japanese cities. Then again, there may lie a deeper significance to this portrayal of the monster…
In Tokyo, Japanese authorities could not wrap their heads around the creature, neither can they organise a swift and effective response. Funny how bureacracy can be worse as the movie evidently shoots to the ageing board of ministers who failed at almost everything to minimise damages except to pass this impeding and burning trouble among various authorities. Finally, Deputy Secretary Rando Yaguchi (played by Hiroki Hasegawa) was able to rise above his seniors and elect a team of “weirdos” to take on the challenge of saving Japan.
Together with direct references to internal concerns of Japanese’s international reputation, to nuclear energy sources and to re-occurrences of nuclear bomb disasters as in WWII, the Japanese production team does effectively preserve Godzilla as a filmographic representation of all the above. In fact, Shin Godzilla was mentioned in the film to be a nuclear threat itself. Shin Godzilla may have become less destructive but it is never less menacing than it was before.
Be sure to catch Shin Godzilla “Godzilla Resurgence” in theatres.