“Godzilla Minus One” is a blockbuster film that brings back the charm of classic monster movies, and it’s a refreshing departure from the typical Hollywood fare. Made by Japan’s Toho Studios, this latest addition to the Godzilla saga is a grounded and well-crafted experience, delivering both on human storytelling and the giant monster spectacle.
The movie follows Kōichi Shikishima, played by Ryunosuke Kamiki, a WWII pilot who faces disgrace for avoiding kamikaze duties. Surviving a Godzilla attack on an island, he teams up with weapons engineer Kenji Noda (Hidetaka Yoshioka) to plan an attack on the monstrous creature. Amidst the chaos, Shikishima finds purpose in raising an abandoned child with Noriko Ōishi (Minami Hamabe), a woman he meets in post-war Tokyo.
With a simple yet engaging story, the film successfully takes Godzilla back to its roots. Godzilla wreaks havoc with radioactive breath, attacking both by sea and land, particularly devastating Ginza. Writer-director Takashi Yamazaki, also in charge of visual effects, skillfully balances the monster action with human elements, emphasizing themes of unity after disaster. The result is a thrilling and fun monster movie that proves the classics can make a powerful comeback with a touch of heart and ingenuity.