Godzilla
Columbia / 1998 / 133 Mins / Rated PG


MOVIE
After the success of Independence Day, Roland Emmerich & Dean Devlin were looking for a larger vehicle to make a boatload of money on, so they took the safer option of remaking Godzilla. Now there is a lot of people divided about how they like this movie and there are others who think the movie is so shallow and pointless they wonder why it was ever made. 

Now I'm not going to get into the old ring here so I'll just sit on the fence here. While it's not a great movie, it's not too bad either. Like the filmmakers said, "We make popcorn movies!" And this certainly is a popcorn movie filled with lots of action and special effects. 

The basic story goes along the lines, that during the French nuclear testing in French Polynesia in the 50's a lizard slowly evolved over the years into a huge dinosaur like reptile. Now 40 years later it's slowly moving around the world and ends up in and is ready to nest in New York City. Great setting at least. I won't go too much into it, suffice it to say Matthew Broderick plays a nuclear scientist who studies mutations and has been drafted to find out about the big lizard. 

So anyway like I said, Godzilla makes his way to NYC and decides that if he can make it there he can make it anywhere, even if it means destroying it along the way. And the Army will have something to say about it. Have a watch it's good escapist fun.

VIDEO
Now this is where we are talking reference quality, you would think that a movie like this would show up a lot of noise and MPEG artifacts but it doesn't. There has been a lot of great MPEG encoding done on this disc and it really shows well. The shadow detail is very crisp and it shows Columbia/Tri-Star are the best at DVD's at the moment.

This is a single sided, dual layer disc.

Godzilla is framed at 2:40:1 and is 16:9 enhanced.

AUDIO
The audio on the disc is encoded in Dolby Digital 5.1 and is very impressive. The use of the surround channels is very aggressive and immersive. The .1 Channel was also frequently used and used well & the dialogue was clear and easy to understand for about 95% of the movie. Great Stuff.
EXTRAS
Talk about a lot. Firstly you get 2 teaser and 1 theatrical trailer that are all encoded in Dolby Surround but still very impressive. You also get a feature length commentary track by Volker Engel about the movie's special effects and although it's a little shallow is informative in places. You also get a music video of The Wallflowers "Heroes", a cheesy documentary and some production notes including photos and cast notes. Quite impressive really.
FINAL THOUGHTS
Even though the movie isn't the best ever made, the reference quality of the picture, sound, the amount of extras you get with the movie make it a must buy for all you DVD nuts out there. Great job Tri-Star.

16:9 ENHANCEMENT DISC RATING

VIDEO:
AUDIO:
EXTRAS:
PLOT:
OVERALL:

REVIEW EQUIPMENT

Display: 48" Sony RPTV.
DVD Player:
Panasonic A350 Player using S-Video Cables.
Receiver:
Pioneer VSX-D508 Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround.
Speakers:
Accusound 5.1 speaker system.

Copyright 2000 by [Roger Ward].
Revised: 25 May 2000 14:40:45 +1100 .

DVD INFORMATION
Region Coding: Region 4
No of Discs: 1
OFLC Rating PG
Running Time: 133 minutes
Case Type: Keep Case
Release Date: 15/12/98
Catalog Number: D21739
List Price: $34.95
Distributor: Columbia/Tri-Star
DISC SPECIFICATIONS
Disc Format: PAL
Disc Type: Picture Disc
Disc Format: SS-RSDL
Chapters: 28
Macrovision: Yes
Manufacturer: Sony DVD Center
VIDEO SPECIFICATIONS
Aspect Ratio: 2:40:1
Anamorphic: Yes
Film Format: 35mm
SOUND SPECIFICATIONS
Dolby Digital:

5.1 Surround
2.0 Surround

DTS: None
PCM Stereo: None
Other: None
Languages: English
Subtitles: Yes
SPECIAL FEATURES
Audio Commentary: Yes
Theatrical Trailer: Yes
Teaser Trailer: Yes (2)
TV Spots: None
Dolby Trailer: City Trailer
Documentary: Yes
Cast & Crew Bios: None
Deleted Scenes: None
Music Videos: Yes
DVD Rom Content: None
Collectable Booklet: None
Scene Access: Yes
Animated Menus: Yes
Production Notes: None
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