Tag Archives: Michael Dougherty

Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) Movie Review By The Moviie Couple

Godzilla King of the Monsters Review

Director: Michael Dougherty
Writers: Michael Dougherty (screenplay by), Zach Shields (screenplay by)
Stars: Kyle Chandler, Vera Farmiga, Millie Bobby Brown

Moviie Couple here!   We went to see Godzilla: King Of The Monsters this weekend!  Remember we are just a married couple that loves movies!  We’re here to tell you if we liked it.  Film experts we are not!  Just a quick reminder of our rating system.   Mrs. Moviie Couple and I, rate films on whether they are worth the cash spent on a night out.  we use a 1-6 Dollar Bill system.  1-2 Bills equal a waste of both our time and money!  3-4 Bills equal Meh to Pretty Good, money well spent!  5-6 Bills equal Wow!  Well worth the price of dinner, movie and sitter!  Please take our money again!

Godzilla: King of The Monsters is the direct sequel to the 2014 Godzilla film.  It builds on that tale, where we are reintroduced to the Big Guy and he saves us all from the threat of the MUTOs!  That film plus Kong: Skull Island from 2017 officially connects to create the “Monsterverse” films and GKOTM (I can’t keep typing that title so I’ll abbreviate) grows that film universe even further!  Mr & Mrs Moviie Couple keep things spoiler free, so I’ll recap without giving anything away.  The mysterious organization, Monarch (established in the Godzilla and Kong films previous) continue to study and track these creatures known now as Titans.  Only now a new secret organization branches off from them with a new agenda.  Due to some shenanigans and a couple of twists along the way, the Titans are released upon the Earth and only Big G can save us all!   Maybe. We get Big Budget versions of Rodan, Mothra, King Ghidorah and more!  If you recognize those names, this movie may just be for you!  If not, Oh well too bad, sit back, enjoy some popcorn and watch! You get Monster fights!  Unnecessary exposition!  Humans running and screaming!   What else did you expect? Kyle Chandler, Vera Farmiga and Millie Bobby Brown all star as the Russells, a family of scientists with a lot of knowledge about Titans.  Ken Wantanabe and Sally Hawkins return to the franchise as the Monarch experts, Bradley Whitfield and Thomas Middleditch are along for the ride as comic relief and Aisha Hinds and O’Shea Jackson play military for us!  It is directed by Michael Dougherty of Trick ‘R Treat and Krampus fame.  But lets be honest, the true stars people will be coming to see are Godzilla, Mothra, Rodan and “He that is Many” himself…..Ghidorah!  So is a movie starring Coach from Friday Night Lights, Mommy Bates from Bates Motel and Eleven from Stranger Things a hit?!!!!  Is this film more Minilla or Destroyah?  If you understand that joke, you’re in for a Treat.  If not it maybe more of a Trick, see what I did there Mr. Dougherty?  Without further delay, let’s get ready to crumble!!!!  Grab your Oxygen Destroyers, put on our best Harajuku cosplay, lets review this baby and may the best Monster win!

So here we go!

Mr. Moviie Couple:  I am a very old school Godzilla fan!  Complete transparency. I watched many a Saturday afternoon Godzilla film as a child and am well versed in Kaiju (Giant Monsters for you uninitiated) history. So this film was right up my alley.  Godzilla vs Ghidorah?  I’m there, never mind if you throw in Rodan and Mothra! Take my money!  So for the inner little Mr. Moviie Couple this movie did a lot right. The creatures looked new, but with a lot of honor given to the original design. In my opinion, they even improved on Mothra visually!  There were a lot of easter eggs or tips of the hat for the eagle eyed fan.  Keep your eyes peeled, I will not spoil. The best fan service may just be the return of the “Godzilla March” or Godzilla theme!  Man, they update and bring back the score of a surging Godzilla at all the right moments! But, the film’s plot was weak at best.  I found the attempts at comic relief forced and not as funny as it may have seemed on the written paper.  The family story and the military drama seemed mandatory at best and poorly written at worst.  I understand most are not coming to this film for Oscar winning performances and they are here for the monster battles, but lets just say 2014 and Kong handled the human element better in my opinion.  Speaking of the 2014 movie and Kong fights, this will probably be an unpopular opinion, but I felt those kaiju battles were handled better in those film as well. GKOTM has more monsters and more action, but a lot of it seems to be filmed too darkly and too fast.  Many scenes felt like a ride at Universal Studios where you only catch glimpses of the threats as the ride shakes you to and fro.  For me that was a bit disappointing considering the importance these battles have to these types of films. That being said, I had a good time, but it was not a slam dunk for me. A lot of plot was left laying there with no payoff, for example everyone acts like Mothra is important throughout this film and it really never really pays off.  No spoiler, just an observation. The Titans look great, but I wanted better fights (visually) and the plot was just basic as heck.  I have GKOTM as 3-4 Bills, maybe leaning more toward 3 despite a lot of fun Kaiju action.  Closer to Pretty Good (4) for lifelong fans.

Mrs. Moviie Couple: She was very glad it wasn’t a superhero movie. After that she was not very amused.  She felt it was a typical Godzilla film, by the numbers…Wake up Monster from deep sleep (check), Bring Monster to face worse Monster (check), watch good monster fight bad monster (check), Run and /or hide while avoiding fallen debris (check), Tell family member you are estranged from how much you love them (check), Good Monster is hero (double check,   is that a spoiler?). A film only a Godzilla fan would love.  She thought the environmental theme, common in most Godzilla films was updated nicely in this one. She didn’t care for the family portrayal.  Usually a fan of Mr Chandler, Mrs. Moviie Couple felt he was just playing himself and packing it in. She couldn’t stand Vera Farmiga and didn’t believe her in the role for a second, her exact words!  She did however love Millie Bobby Brown! My bride may be the only person on the planet to have not seen Stranger Things, so she had no idea who Ms. Brown was, but loved her in this film.  She thought she an amazing young actress!  Overall, the Mrs. felt the film failed on almost every level.  Even the marquee fight scenes left her wanting, she complained about the Monsters not really changing on the design level and the fights themselves were filmed in the dark and within so much smoke and clouds that she couldn’t even appreciate them for what they were meant to be. This film wasn’t all smoke and mirrors, it was all smoke and clouds! She was not having it!   The Mrs. gave GKOTM 2 Bills!  She didn’t want to walk out, but she wouldn’t waste her money again!

On the way home, I continued to talk about the Mothra design and the many plot flaws, while pointing out the fun of the battles and the nostalgia shout outs for true green Godzilla fans! Mrs. Moviie Couple didn’t talk much, she only kept repeating how great Millie Bobby Brown was and how she would have to watch a few episodes of Friday Night Lights to cleanse her Kyle Chandler palate and redeem himself in her eyes. WOW.  Just WOW. The drive home always clarifies how we felt about a movie. Silence is not golden, silence is bad. I was not silent, The Mrs. kept to the golden rule we all learned from the Disney classic Bambi. If you have nothing good to say, don’t say anything at all.  At least young Ms. Brown has a new fan. I give it 3.5 Bills, a true G-Fan film, with a lot of flaws.  The Mrs. gives it 2 Bills!  A true don’t waste your money! So we give Godzilla: King of the Monster 3 solid Bills! I say Meh to Pretty Good. She says, not a walk out, but a waste of money. Stay in and wait to stream it. So we’ll go with an average of Meh!  Not the worst, but not the best!

So until the next date night, which if you go to our Facebook page you’ll see a clue to!  We will see you next time!  Moviie Coupe out!

Krampus (2015) Movie Review By Darrin Gauthier

Krampus Review
Director: Michael Dougherty
Writers: Todd Casey, Michael Dougherty
Stars: Adam Scott, Toni Collette, David Koechner

Plot:  A boy who has a bad Christmas ends up accidentally summoning a festive demon to his family home.

Running Time: 98 Minutes

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics Score: 65%   Audience 51%

Why I Watched It: I love Christmas and Horror movies so a match made in film heaven.

Random Thoughts: Couple of interesting points here the first one is the fact that critics liked it more than audience on Rotten Tomatoes, that doesn’t happen very often.  Director Michael Dougherty did the cult fav, I guess I can kind of call it that Trick ‘r Treat and this is his follow up.  I thought Trick ‘r Treat was interesting but a tad over rated but it was also liked by critics.  The other thing to point out this is kind of an odd cast for this movie, let’s just call it random.

Also a heads h up there’s a lot of direct to DVD movies out there with Krampus in the title.

What I Liked: The film feels like a grim fairy tale, the mood and look was very good, what’s cool is this is a film set at Christmas and it has more dread than cheer.  Right off the bat this film is short darkly and you just feel all is not right.

Christmas horror films is a weird sub-genre and there’s more than you would think, but a lot fall into the PG-13 zone and is more silly this one is a hard R and it’s true horror movie set not only with a Christmas theme but it’s main selling point.

The cast for the most part is good, I really liked Toni Collette as a mother and wife and sister who just seems tired of it all or by it all and that’s the thing with this film it has this under current of sadness to it, no one is really that happy, and to it’s credit there’s times where they deal with it, there’s a few good little character moments here, during the film the relationships are fleshed out more than in most horror films and the adults are more than cliches.  By the end you actually care who lives and dies.  Also give it credit it does have some nice atmosphere and a couple of scary moments.

What I Didn’t Like: The beginning was very board and was a little worried we would be just telling with stock stereotypes and some of the acting by the younger cast was wooden, let’s say it didn’t start off great, it started like most Christmas family comedies and it does drag to get to the main plot and of course the horror.

The horror here is a mixed bag, I wished the used the Krampus character more, the use different demons or whatever you want to call them and some were silly, gingerbread cookies start attacking and elves, I thought it was turning into Gremlins, at those points the tone was off, cause the film is dark and it goes into the silly bit then it gets serious again for the big finale.

Also the backstory and the lore around Krampus left me a little confused, not sure I got his deal cause it seems odd. cause all the kid does here is rip up his letter to Santa and if that means you unleash this monster than wouldn’t most families be killed by Krampus at Christmas.

I also see why Critics have liked it more than audiences, it’s a well made film but not a really satisfying horror film, I didn’t like the ending at all.  Also I will say it’s a downer of a film, almost mean spirited  at times.

Final Thoughts: An interesting film and one that does hold your attention but not a film good enough to be a Christmas Horror classic, meaning something you would watch around the holidays.

Rating: 6/10