Godzilla: King of the Monsters – 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review

Godzilla: King of the Monsters

When Godzilla came out in 2014, many people criticized the movie for not showing enough of the titular character. After all, how can you tease him for over half the movie and still call it a Godzilla? Well, it turns out that the producers heard the criticism and took it to heart. Godzilla: King of the Monsters has so much Godzilla and so much of the other kaiju as well.

Not to mention, each interaction (ie. fight) is spectacular, to say the least. There is a grand epic feel to each and every single fight that your jaw will hit the floor every single time. It’s a treat to see these kaiju get the treatment that they so rightfully deserve. Also, it’s nice to see that the filmmakers decide that the monsters should be the focus and not the human characters. This was a big problem in the first film as well. This time around, Godzilla: King of the Monsters puts the kaiju front and center while the human characters are simply secondary, supporting characters.

Unfortunately, this also creates problems with the character development and evolution of these characters. Although the filmmakers put together an incredible cast, the human characters are used as plot devices and tools to move the film’s MacGuffin around. Speaking of which, the echo device, in a weird way, is both smart and a hindrance to the film. Yes, it’s smart in its usage of bringing the kaiju together in order to start a big fight. However, after a while, it becomes a little too convenient of a plot device.

As you can see, that’s the biggest problem with King of the Monsters. They don’t really know how to balance everything out. There are films out there like a Bumblebee or Pete’s Dragon where both creature and human are equally present. There is no in-between here. It either goes one way or in the total opposite direction.

Regardless, Godzilla: King of the Monsters is an incredibly fun, epic, and entertaining film. Sure, there are issues with the human characters and some of the film’s storylines. But Godzilla is not supposed to be about those things, it’s supposed to be a commentary about the state of humanity and it’s about monsters beating the crap out of each other. The filmmakers clearly recognize this because they’re fans of the material. At the end of the day, that’s all you can ever ask for.

Movie Rating: 4/5 atoms


Godzilla: King of the Monsters - Vera Farmiga and Charles Dance
Godzilla: King of the Monsters hits Ultra HD Blu-ray with an HDR transfer and a 2.39:1 aspect ratio. The video transfer is stunningly beautiful. It may not be reference quality but it’s still awesome nonetheless. The brightness gives the film vibrant whites. Not to mention, there’s some nice definition in the details of the bright areas. However, the black levels aren’t as lucky. Most of the dark areas are the lighter shade of black. However, there are instances where the dark areas are deep black.

With the color saturation, everything is nicely saturated. It’s not oversaturated and the colors aren’t a natural shade either. For a 4K upscale transfer, the film’s clarity is superb. The details and edges are crisp and clean all around. Overall, this is a great video work done by Warner Bros.

Video Rating: 4.5/5 atoms


Godzilla: King of the Monsters - Kyle Chandler
Godzilla: King of the Monsters hits Ultra HD Blu-ray (see it on Amazon) with a Dolby Atmos and a core 7.1 Dolby TrueHD Master Audio track. This review will reflect Godzilla‘s Dolby Atmos track. Let me say that a lot of studios’ home video releases out there don’t seem to know what to do with the Dolby Atmos format. Godzilla: King of the Monsters is not one of those releases. In fact, it’s safe to say that the audio for King of the Monsters is a reference-quality mix.

The audio mix is simply just playful, immersive, and BIG. Not only does the audio pan through the soundstage but the accurate placement of sound effects completely immerses you in the scene. In addition, the overhead effects fully encompass you from above and behind. Yet the crazy thing is that the mix tricks you into hearing sound effects in places where there aren’t any speakers. As you can imagine, there is very little usage for atmospherics among the mayhem. Yet you can still subtly hear them among the chaos such as the subtle rumbles of the USS Argo.

On the other hand, Bear McCreary’s score completely fills up the soundstage and complements the chaotic sound effects well. But what adds that extra little bit of epicness is the huge rumble coming from the subwoofer. It gets plenty of work so be sure to warn your neighbors beforehand. Believe it or not, the dialogue is crisp and perfectly audible among everything that you read above. Overall, this is an audio mix fit for a king… of the monsters.

Audio Rating: 5/5 atoms

Special Features

Godzilla: King of the Monsters - Millie Bobby Brown
Godzilla: King of the Monsters‘ Ultra HD Blu-ray disc only has the audio commentary on it. However, you can find the rest of the following special features on the Bonus Features Blu-ray disc:

  • Monsters 101
    • Godzilla: Nature’s Fearsome Guardian
    • Mothra: Queen of the Monsters
    • Ghidorah: The Living Extinction Machine
    • Rodan: Airborne God of Fire
  • Evolution of the Titans
    • Godzilla 2.0
    • Making Mothra
    • Creating Ghidorah
    • Reimagining Rodan
  • Monarch in Action
    • The Yunnan Temple
    • Castle Bravo
    • The Antarctic Base
    • The Isla de Mara Volcano
    • The Undersea Lair
  • Millie Bobby Brown: Force of Nature
  • Monster Tech: Monarch Joins the Fight
  • Monsters Are Real
  • Welcome to the Monsterverse
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Theatrical Trailers
  • Audio Commentary with Michael Dougherty, Zach Shields, and O’Shea Jackson Jr.

Surprisingly, this release of Godzilla: King of the Monsters features an entire treasure trove of information about the film. Most of that information comes from the audio commentary with Dougherty, Shields, and Jackson Jr. Although Dougherty takes over much of the audio commentary, he reveals a ton of Easter eggs in the film. Small details that you might’ve missed the first time around. It’s clear from the get-go that Dougherty (and Jackson Jr.) are huge fans of the Godzilla franchise.

In addition, “Evolution of the Titans”, “Monarch in Action”, and “Monster Tech” provide even more behind-the-scenes information about the making of the film. It features a lot of pre-visualization, storyboards, and behind-the-scenes footage. “Monsters Are Real” is another interesting featurette which highlights the history of “monsters” in our world. It’s always interesting to hear about the history of something and its influence on a particular film.

Unfortunately, the rest of the special features are skippable. “Monsters 101” provide information and statistics about the four monsters in the film. However, if you’re a fan of the series or saw the film already then this information will be useless to you. At the same time, the Millie Bobby Brown featurette is simply a “pat on the back” featurette that’s taking over a majority of special features nowadays. The “Monsterverse” feature is simply a giant ad for the upcoming  Godzilla vs. Kong film. Be that as it may, this hype video does its job really well. It will make you very excited about the upcoming versus film. Lastly, the deleted scenes are scenes that are interesting but useless in terms of the overall storyline.

Special Features Rating: 4/5 atoms

Overall, Godzilla: King of the Monsters is a fantastic Hollywood adaptation of the classic Japanese franchise. It’s made by people who absolutely love the franchise, and it clearly shows in the film. It’s made with a ton of respect to the Showa era films that came before it. The video is absolutely amazing, but it’s the audio mix that truly shows the power of Dolby Atmos. It’s definitely a reference-quality kind of audio mix. Lastly, the special features are a complete treasure trove of knowledge about the making of the film.

Overall Rating: 4.5/5 atoms

This Blu-ray was reviewed using a retail/advance copy/unit provided by Warner Bros Home Entertainment.

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