Godzilla: King of the Monsters (released as Godzilla II: King of the Monsters in some markets) is a 2019 American monster film that was directed by Michael Dougherty and co-written by Dougherty and Zach Shields from a story by Max Borenstein, Dougherty, and Shields. A sequel to the 2014 Godzilla film, it is the 35th film in the Godzilla franchise, the third film in Legendary’s MonsterVerse, and the third Godzilla film to be completely produced by a Hollywood studio.
The film stars Kyle Chandler, Vera Farmiga, Millie Bobby Brown, Bradley Whitford, Sally Hawkins, Charles Dance, Thomas Middleditch, Aisha Hinds, O’Shea Jackson Jr., David Strathairn, Ken Watanabe, and Zhang Ziyi. It is dedicated to executive producer Yoshimitsu Banno and original Godzilla suit performer Haruo Nakajima, who both passed away in 2017. In the film, humans must rely on Godzilla to defeat King Ghidorah, who has awakened other Titans to destroy the world.
The sequel was green-lit during the opening weekend of Godzilla, with original director Gareth Edwards expected to return. Edwards left the project in May 2016, and Dougherty, who had been hired in October 2016 to re-write the script with Zach Shields, was announced as the director in January 2017. Principal photography began in June 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia, and wrapped up in September 2017.
Godzilla: King of the Monsters was released on May 31, 2019, to mixed reviews from critics, with praise aimed at the visual effects, the action sequences, the cinematography, and the musical score but criticism aimed at the pacing, the tone, the story, and the characters. The film was a box office disappointment, and it ended up grossing $385 million worldwide against a production budget of $170-$200 million. A sequel, titled Godzilla vs Kong, is scheduled for release on March 13, 2020.
The Film Itself (4/5):
Godzilla: King of the Monsters is an attempt at trying to travel down the road that was originally created by Gareth Edwards’ 2014 film, as well as trying to create a new identity while paying respect to the original franchise as a whole. The movie will definitely appeal to the die-hard fans, but from a dramatic standpoint, it falls short from that mark. There’s a decent amount of destruction and chaos that seems to be handled really well, so if you’re into movies with very large monsters simply tearing the city up, this might just be the release for you.
Picture Quality (5/5):
Presented with a 1080p transfer courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures, the Blu-ray release of Godzilla: King of the Monsters gives audiences a solid mass of visuals that were primarily created with the use of green screen content. With the sheer amount of computer generated visuals that are being used, the objects on screen look really damn good and blend into the more natural scenery really well, allowing for them to feel as if they were really happening right then and there. The colors are sharp and defined, and the dynamics to the picture presentation move in a way that ensures that there’s minimal distortion to the viewing experience.
Audio Quality (5/5):
Packaged with an English Dolby Atmos audio track, the Blu-ray release of Godzilla: King of the Monsters offers an insanely immersive audio experience for those of you that are setup with Atmos at home. With the wide range of audible elements, the movement with the ranges, and the transitions from channel to channel were seamless and really made this one of the better audio experiences that I’ve personally had the pleasure of sitting down with in a good while. The dialogue is spoken cleanly, and the characters are able to be heard and understood without any issues whatsoever.
The Packaging (2.5/5):
Godzilla: King of the Monsters comes packaged in the standard two-disc Blu-ray amaray case. In that case, the Blu-ray and DVD copies of the movie. Neither disc feature any artwork outside of the standard release text. There is a digital copy that’s been included, as well as a matching slipcover that’s been made available during the initial print run.
Special Features (4/5):
There are a number of special features included with the Blu-ray release of Godzilla: King of the Monsters. The material that’s been provided offers a pretty good in-depth look at the work, and efforts that went into making the movie happen, working with the historic character behind all of the chaos and the monster that’s brought out to defend the city. The features also include some of the experiences that were had with the cast and crew members as they worked along, and really, I couldn’t have asked for a better grouping of features to be included with this movie. Included with this release is:
- Monsters 101
- Evolution of the Titans
- Monarch in Action
- Millie Bobby Brown: Force of Nature
- Monster Tech: Monarch Joins the Fight
- Monsters Are Real
- Welcome to the Monsterverse
- Deleted and Extended Scenes
- Mark’s Flashback
- Boxing Practice
- Radio Room
- Theatrical Trailers
- Optional Feature Audio Commentary with Director Michael Dougherty, producer Zack Shields, and actor O’Shea Jackson, Jr.
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Original Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English: Dolby Atmos
English: Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)
English: Dolby Digital 5.1
French: Dolby Digital 5.1
Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
English SDH, Spanish, French
Original Film: 132 Minutes
I was really glad to have had the opportunity to sit down and experience Godzilla: King of the Monsters as it’s been quite some time since I’ve sat down to a Godzilla film. This movie, while it does leave some questions unanswered with the storyline, it packs a hell of a punch with the visuals and action sequences from within, making this movie an overall good one in my book. The audio and video presentation of the Blu-ray release were really well handled, and I can really only imagine how great this would look on 4K UHD. If you’re considering this release for your collection, I would definitely recommend picking it up. Godzilla: King of the Monsters is available on 4K UHD, Blu-ray and DVD today.
Note: This Blu-ray was sent to us for review. This has not affected our judgement or editorial process in any way. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding this process.