Godzilla is a 2019 American science fiction adventure animated film directed by Zack Snyder and scored by Bear McCreary. The film is a reimagining of the Godzilla franchise with the characters being distinctly humanoid. The film stars Hugh Jackman in the title role and Tom Holland, Tara Strong, Eric Vale, Tom Hiddleston, Idris Elba, Ken Watanabe, Christopher Eccleston, and Sally Hawkins in supporting roles. Godzilla is also the first film in the Kaiju Animated Universe.
The film starts in the Andromeda Galaxy, on the planet Ghidorah. The ruler of the planet, Grand King Ghidorah (Elba), has decided that the time has come for him to assimilate Earth into his growing empire, and so he sends his minion Hedorah (Vale) to prepare the planet for his arrival by eradicating Earth's many protectors, starting with Godzilla Senior (Jackman).
Meanwhile, on Monster Island, an island off the coast of Japan, Senior's son, Godzilla Junior (Holland), is hunting for food, and catches a large bird. He brings the bird back to his father's house, and they go on a grocery trip to the Japanese mainland. There, Junior asks Senior if he can start fighting alongside him, only for Senior to refuse.
The next day, Senior goes for a walk on the beach and has a run-in with Hedorah, who nearly kills him before Junior steps in and drives him off. The next day, Junior fails to catch a squirrel, and in his anger, unlocks the ability to generate atomic energy and accidentally blows up a tree. He excitedly goes to tell his father, who reluctantly agrees to let Junior fight alongside him. Meanwhile, Ghidorah sends his son, Prince Zero (Hiddleston), to assist Hedorah.
Zero flies to Monster Island and attacks the father and son duo, but they are rescued by the goddess Mothra (Strong), and Zero ends up retreating. Senior initially refuses Mothra's help, but Junior manages to convince him to let her help. Back at his base, Hedorah locates a cosmic artifact known as the Cosmic Orb, which Ghidorah also sent him to retrieve, and tracks it down to the heart of Tokyo.
The next day, the two Godzillas go to the mainland on another grocery run, only to be attacked by Hedorah and Zero while Ghidorah's army begins invading Tokyo. Senior and Junior fight through the army until they get to Zero and Hedorah, at which point the former engages in battle with Junior while the latter attacks Senior. Zero manages to overwhelm Junior, but is distracted by Mothra, who had just arrived, long enough for Junior to get the upper hand and scar Zero's face with his hunting knife. Junior then collapses, and Mothra rushes over to use her healing powers on him. Senior sees his son collapse and, in a fit of rage, gains the strength to incapacitate Hedorah with a punch charged with atomic energy. Zero retreats, and Hedorah is arrested by a squad of government agents led by Vivienne Graham (Hawkins), who congratulates Senior, Junior, and Mothra on saving the city.
In a mid-credits scene, Ishiro Serizawa (Watanabe) contacts Senior and tells him of a government project to defend Earth. In a post-credits scene, Zero is scolded by his father and then taunted by his brother, Prince X (Eccleston), which causes him to angrily declare his burning hatred for the both of them and that he will show everyone what he's capable of.
Hugh Jackman as Godzilla Senior
Tom Holland as Godzilla Junior
Tara Strong as Mothra
Eric Vale as Hedorah
Tom Hiddleston as Prince Zero
Idris Elba as Grand King Ghidorah
Ken Watanabe as Ishiro Serizawa
Sally Hawkins as Vivienne Graham
Christopher Eccleston as Prince X
The film was released in the United States on August 21, 2019, and was released worldwide on September 1, 2019. The film made $3 million against a $820,000 budget, making it a box-office success.
The film received positive reviews from critics and general audiences alike. It has an approval rating of 86% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 52 reviews, with an average rating of 8.5/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Godzilla is a bold new reimagining of the classic city-destroying monster, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. However, there were a couple issues with pacing that kind of bugged me." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 89 out of 100 based on 47 reviews, indicating "generally positive reviews."
The first trailer for the film was shown at San Diego Comic-Con International, and more trailers were shown as the year progressed until the film was finally released. Zack Snyder also made several comments regarding the film on his Twitter account.
Action figures of Godzilla Senior, Godzilla Junior, Mothra, Hedorah, and Prince Zero were sold across the United States to promote the film after its initial release.
The film was made to introduce the Kaiju Animated Universe, and the 2021 film The Defenders was teased in a mid-credits scene at the end of the film. In 2020, a sequel, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, was released.
- The film was originally meant to be released in late 2018, but scheduling conflicts with several cast members caused the actual making of the film to be delayed until early 2019, and the release to be delayed until mid-2019.
- King Ghidorah was originally meant to be the main antagonist of the film. However, the producers decided it would be best for Ghidorah to be relegated to the big crossover film. Then, Ghidorah was split into two characters: Grand King Ghidorah and Prince Zero. Zero ended up as the secondary antagonist of the film, and Hedorah was added in as the main antagonist.
- Godzilla Senior was originally supposed to be voiced by Josh Brolin, but was replaced with Hugh Jackman when Zack Snyder saw Avengers: Infinity War and realized Brolin would fit much better in a similar role to Thanos.