Godzilla: King Of The Monsters 4K Ultra HD

Featured In Issue 243, September 2019

WSR Score4
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Warner Bros . Home Entertainment
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Sequences of monster action violence and destruction, and some language
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-66)
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Michael Dougherty
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Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1
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(French Language):
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"Godzilla: King Of The Monsters" follows the heroic efforts of the crypto-zoological agency Monarch as its members face off against a battery of god-size monsters, including the mighty Godzilla, who collides with Mothra, Rodan and his ultimate nemesis, the three-headed Ghidorah. When these ancient super-species––thought to be mere myths––rise again, they all vie for supremacy, leaving humanity's very existence hanging in the balance. (Gary Reber)

Special features include commentary by Director Michael Dougherty; the following featurettes: "Godzilla: Nature's Fearsome Guardian (HD 00:59), "Mothra: Queen Of The Monsters" (HD 02:01), "King Ghidorah: The Living Extinction Machine" (HD 01:30), "Rodan: Airborne God Of Fire" (HD 01:13), "Godzilla 2.0" (HD 08:38), "Making Mothra" (HD 07:00), "Creating Ghidorah" (HD 06:23), "Reimagining Rodan" (HD 05:21), "The Yunnan Temple" (HD 06:58), "Castle Bravo" (HD 06:18), "The Antarctic Base" (HD 06:24), "The Isla de Mara Volcano" (HD 05:55), "The Undersea Lair" (HD 07:18), "Millie Bobby Brown: Force Of Nature" (HD 04:07), "Monster Tech: Monarch Joins The Fight" (HD 08:34), Monsters Are Real" (HD 14:18) and "Welcome To The Monsterverse" (HD 03:42); two deleted scenes (HD 05:01); four theatrical trailers (HD 12:08); upfront previews and a Movies Anywhere digital code.

The 2.39:1 2160p HEVC/H.265 Ultra HD HDR10/Dolby Vision/HDR10+ picture, reviewed on a Sony Bravia Z9D 4K Ultra HD HDR display, was photographed digitally in anamorphic Panavision® using the Arri Alexa 65 and Arri Alexa Mini camera systems and sourced from a 2K (not 4K) master. A 3D Blu-ray is available with the 3D conversion by DNEG 3D, but Warner Bros. did not provide for review. This is a fantastic picture, both in terms of presentation quality and the extensive CGI visual effects, seamlessly integrated with live action. Numerous scenes exhibit a blueish tint as part of the overall creative stylization. The wide color gamut reveals an incredible range of subtle hue variations and saturations. Fleshtones retain naturalness throughout various settings and environments. HDR contrast is excellent, exhibiting deep blacks and revealing shadow delineation. Underwater scenes are spectacular. Lighting effects are naturally rendered, creating compelling visual segments. The explosive lights that awaken Godzilla are intense, as well as the electrical ray projections of the three-headed Ghidorah and pole light explosions. Destruction after destruction is the norm, with an unbelievable showing of debris everywhere. Resolution is superb, with fine detail exhibited throughout, especially during close-ups. Facial features are revealing of skin pores, facial lines, hair, beard stubs, clothing, computer screens and object textures. WOW! segments are numerous, such as from 05:40 to 08:08, 18:06 to 18:56, 27:55 to 29:32, 36:10 to 39:10, 43:00 to 44:55, 56:10 to 57:24, 58:08 to 01:00:27, 01:32:42 to 01:35:42, 01:43:30 to 01:45:20, and 01:48:26 to 01:50:10.

This is a masterpiece of CGI imagery integrated with live action with awesome visual effects and stylization that will enthrall fans. (Gary Reber)

The Dolby Atmos/Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel soundtrack delivers a powerful "crunching" dynamic presence with incredible room-shaking sub-25 Hz bass energized in the .1 LFE channel. Deep, room-filling bass is an often occurrence. Sound effects, such as explosions, dual-blade helicopters and jet aircraft sound powerful. The panning of sound effects is sonically exciting and is fully engaged from all soundfield perspectives. Directionalization is also exciting and enhances the sense of closing terror from all directions. Giant door slams and shield openings, ice explosions and numerous other sound effects, both aggressively presented and nuanced, enhance the excitement. Foley sound effects march in perfect sync with the action. The orchestral/choral score, while positioned in the background of the action, is powerful and strongly enveloping within the soundfield with a wide and deep soundstage presence. The explosions are intensely powerful. Monster poundings on the Arctic frozen ice sheet and Godzilla's foot steps will rock your theatre. Other effects such as Intense rocket fire, screaming monsters, and powerful thunder and rainstorms further enhance the mayhem. Then there is the super-intense explosion of the "oxygen destroyer" weapon used against the monster, after which there is an uncanny silence that overtakes the soundfield. In the quieter segments, nuanced atmospherics are realistic. Dialogue is nicely integrated spatially throughout, as well as intelligible.

The Immersive Sound element is often spectacular with impressive height layer pans and directionalizations of powerful sound effects and atmospherics. The sequences begin with the destruction of San Francisco by Godzilla, a kitchen smoke alarm, Yunnan Rainforest creature sounds, the pounding heartbeat and other sounds from Mothra, Mothra growls and spits, Colorado nature setting sounds, a dual-blade helicopter pan, wind and turbulence during a snowstorm, underwater turbulence, underwater Godzilla sounds, pounding rain, a danger siren, gunfire, falling ice and debris from the Ghidorah escape, an electronic wave sound, a helicopter's spinning blade, the electric way Ghidorah discharges, Godzilla and Ghidorah roars while fighting, an ambient aircraft interior background sound, explosive sounds and a siren, Rodan sounds, monster fighting sequences and sounds of ruckus, the sound of the oxygen destroyer weapon exploding, powerful thunder, high pitch sounds, Mothra sounds, panned jet flyovers, sounds of a radioactive Godzilla rising out of the sea, fiery blasts from Ghidorah, Godzilla screeching, all manner of monster fighting sounds, and numerous other sound effects and ambiences. This is one of the best Dolby Atmos Immersive Sound treatments.

This is a blast of a holosonic® spherical surround soundtrack with indescribably powerful sound effects and atmospherics that are adrenaline-stimulating. Fans will be overwhelmed with the energy this soundtrack delivers, which will definitely be a challenge for the best home theatre Immersive Sound systems to reproduce faithfully. (Gary Reber)