“Godzilla Minus One” is a 2023 film that was written, directed and had the visual effects done by Takashi Yamazaki, is the 37th film in the “Godzilla” franchise and marks the 33rd film to be produced the original production crew, Toho Studios. After 3 years of putting a final script together, Yamazaki finally bought his version of “Godzilla” to the big screen which had inspiration from the original 1954 film as well as the 2001 film, “Godzilla, Mothra & King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All Out Attack”.

In the final days of WWII, a Japanese kamikaze pilot, Koichi, takes refuge on Odo Islands to fix his faulty plane. While there, Koichi and the crew of military mechanics are attacked by the monstrous creature known as “Godzilla”. Koichi is the only survivor after as he returns home to Japan but is immediately horrified to learn that his family and home did not survive that Hiroshima attack and is left with nothing. 2 years later, Koichi has met a young girl, Noriko, and taken in a baby girl, Akiko. Koichi works as a minesweeper off the coast of Japan. During on his runs, Koichi is shocked not only that Godzilla has returned but he has been mutated after the nuclear testing during “Operation Crossroads”. Now, after the facing the horrors war, Koichi and a group of soldiers & private citizens to ban together to take down this monster who is wreaking havoc during their rebuilding process.

This was a fantastic film from beginning to end. The idea that Godzilla is more monster than God like being here is a good thing because that makes the monster much more menacing. A major complaint I’ve had with previous Godzilla films, is the human characters. Their stories & screen are underwhelming & bland, not all that interesting. Here, we get a fabulous character arch from beginning to end with the characters in this film. The first half of the film was a tragic war film while the second half was more of the action-packed Sci – Fi monster movie, and these 2 genres were blended together beautifully. The look and design of Godzilla was great. It looked menacing and reminded me of the original monster, but in this 4K filter. The action sequences from the battles on the water to the attack on the city, all incredible. It had the look and feel of a modern-day disaster film but still having the spectacle of an international monster film.

Toho Studios last “Godzilla” film was 2016’s “Shin Godzilla” and due to their agreement with Legendary Pictures, who were making “The Monster Verse” films that featured characters from Toho’s original films, they would have to wait nearly 7 years before beginning a new production. Their agreement ended in 2020 but was renewed the following year with the release of 2021’s “Godzilla VS. Kong” and its upcoming 2024 sequel. At the time of this posting, there is no official word on a sequel however, director Takashi Yamazaki has shown interest in doing another film should Toho decide to move forward with a sequel.