Wednesday, October 19, 2016

I'm Not Going to See Shin Godzilla, and That's Fine: A Manifesto



That's just not my Godzilla -- and that's fine.

SPOILERS (I guess? Sort of?)

Shin Godzilla is my Batman v. Superman.


I have no interest in seeing Shin Godzilla because it's not the Godzilla I like. I like the fire-breathing archosaur superhero of the late '60s and early '70s Showa Era films, the Hanna-Barbera cartoon, Godzilla: The Series, and (arguably) much of the Heisei and Millenium films. I respect and enjoy the early Showa films and the scathing political satire of the original, Mothra vs. Godzilla, Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, and other entries in the franchise, but a shapeshifting, hyper-evolutionary thing that shoots lasers out of its spine fins, tail, and mouth just isn't my kind of Godzilla.

Which is fine. Not every iteration of Godzilla has to be for me. The fact that I don't want to see Shin Godzilla doesn't make it a bad movie. It doesn't make it wrong.

I consider myself a big Zorro fan, for that matter, but I've never liked the 1990 Zorro TV series with Duncan Regehr and I can't make it two minutes into an episode of the new kid-friendly CGI Zorro: The Chronicles. The New World series has a lot of fans, so I can't consider it "bad;" it's just not to my taste. Zorro: The Chronicles might actually be bad, but I'm not the target audience or age group, so it's really hard for me to judge.

I'm a bit of an Arthuriana nut. I don't like First Knight and I don't feel the need to read every King Arthur novel that comes out.

I just can't get into the original Star Trek series, but I'm a fan of The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine" I haven't liked anything since DS9 concluded, but I still consider myself a Star Trek fan.

Daniel Craig is my favorite James Bond, but only because of Casino Royale. I rag on Roger Moore for basically playing Bond the same way he played The Saint, but Live and Let Die and For Your Eyes Only are some of the best films in the franchise.

Dammit, I like Batman v. Superman. In fact, the extended cut fleshes things out so well that it's undoubtedly my favorite non-animated Batman or Superman movie. Shin Godzilla is getting rave reviews, but I'd honestly rather watch the 15 minutes of good guy Godzilla in Gareth Edwards' 2014 movie than use the free movie passes sitting in my wallet to see a film I really doubt that I'll like.

That's the nature of these tales told and retold -- these living, evolving legends -- these entertainment franchises: you're not going to like every version. They're not all for you and they're never for you alone. And that's fine.

Just because you don't like an interpretation of a thing you loved, it doesn't make it invalid. 

Just because you don't like an interpretation of a thing you love, it doesn't mean it's ruined all that you loved before.

Just because you don't like an interpretation of a thing you love, it doesn't mean somebody doesn't love that interpretation you don't like.

And that's fine.
  

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