4K UltraHD Blu-ray Review: Godzilla - (2014)

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With Warner Brothers' brand-new Godzilla vs. Kong hitting HBO Max and theaters (and impressing critics a lot more than the previous entry, Godzilla: King of the Monsters), the timing is right for the freshly-minted 4K upgrade of 2014's Godzilla. I'll say upfront, though easily better than the 1998 Roland Emmerich travesty of the same name, the 2014 version left me kind of meh. Great effects, sure, but it seemed like too much digitized mayhem and not enough human moments. Maybe Godzilla, from any era, just isn't that kind of flick.

Then again, Kong: Skull Island (2017) upped the ante for the MonsterVerse series in terms of humor, quirks, and—yes—even some tangible emotional moments. So it can be done, no matter what genre or style. Director Gareth Edwards (responsible for the absolutely dreadful Rogue One: A Star Wars Story) just didn't go that route with this first MonsterVerse Godzilla. All that said, the new 4K UltraHD issue is a visual stunner that goes some ways towards restoring interest in an otherwise mediocre monster flick.

While it didn't receive an Oscar nomination for Best Visual Effects (a category dominated that year by Marvel-related films, though won by Interstellar), one can only assume it was on the short list for consideration. Director Edwards may not have done much with his cast, but he does create a foreboding visual scheme that is well-served by the CG effects. The original standard Blu-ray edition (included here, yes the original disc from six years ago) was quite superb in its own right. But there is simply no comparison between it and this new 4K version. Combined with a new Dolby Atmos mix, this Godzilla edition (compete with cool retro-style artwork) is absolutely demo-worthy as an audio/visual experience.

The only letdown, perhaps, is that there are no new special features. So if this is a double-dip for you, think of it as an A/V upgrade only. The included standard Blu-ray is, as noted, the same one from 2014 and includes the same assortment of behind-the-scenes featurettes.

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Chaz Lipp writes for The Morton Report.

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