We Certainly Didn’t Need “Godzilla” (2014). But We Need a Thread About it. So Here’s My Two Cents Copied Over from LetterBoxd.



Not even sure where to start on the stupidity and inanity of Godzilla 2014. I’m tempted to just make a bullet list but then I would be stooping to the same depths. Instead, I’ll stick to brevity – something this picture could’ve used much more of.

Both Cranston and Binoche must’ve realized the shit storm they were getting into and decided to bail out early. “Write us out of this!”, they shouted in unison. And so it was done. Thereby removing anyone worth a damn in this whole movie. Don’t get me wrong, I love David Strathairn and to some extent Ken Watanabe, but the dramatic chipmunk glances they kept stealing and the robotic line delivery was just not doing it for me. Randomly (and needlessly) inserting a little Asian kid didn’t exactly fill the hole left from their departure – nice try though guys. At least it filled up twenty minutes of my time though!

Then there is the one Olsen girl that can act. And act she does! It’s just an overly cheese-ball script she is stuck with. Sorry, why don’t you have your ringer on again? Oh right. Frustrating “dramatic” tension.

I also quite like Alexandre Desplat, but this has to be the worst output of his career. Generic yet head pounding at the same time. And inserted in the most inappropriate of moments.

Cinematography? One of the blandest looking movies I’ve seen in a long long time. It makes me giggle a bit when they realized they had a really nice looking shot (the one with the red lanterns hanging in front of a dust cloud) and then proceeded to use the same shot over and over again. Like watching a stand up comedian who is totally failing trying to reuse the one joke that worked, over and over again. It was really sad.

Blue flames was cool and the same clip we saw in the teaser trailer was pretty cool too (again). Opening credits are nice too. That’s. about. it. Monster design was banal. Kill Bill has ten times the sound design this thing has, yet it’s a hundred times smaller picture.

There’s plenty more to complain about if I had the time. Police inexplicably blocking all of the lanes of the evacuation route. Arming a nuclear bomb in the middle of San Francisco Bay. The token black guy is a bus driver. Said bomb that was supposed to be 25x bigger than Hiroshima is barely a whimper of an explosion. I’ll go on more during the Super Ticket podcast later this week.



Friday One Sheet: King of Minimal

Click for larger

There is no shortage of marketing for Gareth Edward’s reboot of Godzilla, the trailers have been great, the posters have been great. But the one above is superb, a rendition of the Japanese flag with the King of Monsters in the middle and a vertical crawl of text at the bottom. It all looks like it was hand rolled on with a mask and red paint at street level. Iconography has never looked so good.

Mamo #347: Days of Future Last

Summer begins now! Welcome to the annual Mamo Summer Box Office Competition, and this, our kickoff episode – in which the Matts lay out their vague theories on how things will go down in the domestic marketplace for the summer of 2014.

To download this episode, use this URL: http://rowthree.com/audio/mamo/mamo347.mp3

THE CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED. Best of luck to all entrants! Here’s the grosses tabulator for this year.


THE SUMMER STARTS ON MAY 1 AND ENDS ON AUGUST 31, in terms of movies you can pick. Please work by domestic release dates only and with domestic grosses only. Scores will be tabulated after the Toronto International Film Festival is over.

Players will submit the following:

Top ten films, in order of total grosses. Also total gross $ amount and opening weekend gross $ amount. So as an example, submissions should look like this:

1. Kind Hearts and Coronets, $402 million, $175 million
2. The Ruling Class, $375 million, $150 million

Points awarded for:

A. 1-10 Points for film rankings. If you are bang on (your #1 pick comes in #1) you get 10. If you are 5 places away (your #8 film comes in #3) you get 5, etc.

B. 10 bonus points for every film who’s gross you have within 5 million of the actual gross.

C. 5 bonus points for every film who’s gross you have within 10 million of the actual gross.

D. 1 bonus point for every film who’s gross you have within 20 million of the actual gross.

E. 10 Bonus Points for every film who’s opening weekend gross is within $1 million of the actual opening weekend gross.

F. 5 Bonus Points for every film who’s opening weekend gross is within $5 million of the actual opening weekend gross.

G. 1 Bonus Point for every film who’s opening weekend gross is within $10 million of the actual opening weekend gross.

E. 10 point bonus for every film you have ranked correctly AND within 5 million of the actual gross AND within $1 million of the opening weekend gross.

F. For the purposes of calculating weekends – Films opening on a Wednesday are counted until the first Sunday they are released. Films opening on Memorial Day weekend are counted until the following Monday. Films opening the week of July 4 are counted from whenever they open in that week until the first Sunday of their release. Example – Spiderman opens on Tuesday, July 3. Your guess for weekend gross would actually be its 6 day total, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday

Bryan Cranston vs. Propaganda: New GODZILLA Trailer!

More character and creeping dread than even the previous trailers, the marketing on Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla reboot just remains stellar, near benchmark really, in how to advertise for a blockbuster franchise film. They’ve kept the goosebump inducing 2001: A Space Odyssey drone in the background, but mainly, it’s Bryan Cranston making us afraid while trying to cut through military white-wash on the level and nature of the disaster. FEMA has always been good at spin, c’est non?

Trailer: Godzilla

Sporting the creepy monolith music from Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey and a real sense of pacing and reveal, this is how trailers should be cut folks. Thus, our first full length trailer for Gareth Edwards’ big, big, big follow up to Monsters, which happens to be another American go around with Godzilla. Will it wash the lukewarm milkshake taste out of our collective mouths that was Pacific Rim? I’m thinking, yes.

Bookmarks for March 10-12

  • Banned from the screening room!
    In the latest scuffle between critics and studios, a New York Press critic Armond White is barred from a Noah Baumbach preview (…but eventually is capitulated to despite the unearthing of some mean spirited words)
  • Roger Ebert’s Thumbs Down for Variety in Letting Go Todd McCarthy in favour of Freelance Reviewing
    “What I’m saying is that Todd McCarthy is not a man Variety should have lightly dismissed. He is the longest-serving and best-known member of the paper’s staff, and if they made such a drastic decision, we are invited to wonder if Variety itself will long survive.”
  • The Cove Team go after Restaurants Serving Illegal Whale-meat
    “In the clash of two Southern California cultures – sushi aficionados and hard-core animal lovers – the animal lovers have thrown a big punch.”
  • Meet the real Shirley Henderson“Her tiny frame and bubble-light voice have made Shirley Henderson a shoo-in for roles such as Harry Potter’s Moaning Myrtle – but don’t be fooled she’s a tough cookie.”
  • I Am Love: More Alternate One Sheets
    Yes, we love looking at all possible designs for the Posters of this particular film.
  • Godzilla Haiku
    AHaiku about Godzilla. There’s really nothing more to say, except “BRILLIANT.”
  • Eric Skillman Interview
    “You may not know the name, but you’ll know the work. He creates a feeling for an entire film, distilled down to a tiny rectangular image. Eric Skillman has been designing DVD covers for the Criterion Collection for a few years now, and each one is a work of art. Serving as either the primary designer or the art director, Skillman has helped to create some of the most memorable discs to come out in the last few years–including the epic designs for Berlin Alexanderplatz and the upcoming Stagecoach.”
  • Do Most Scorsese Pictures End With The Same Line?
    “Every one seems to be about a man who has realized the dichotomy of his life and making a choice. Once blind, now seeing… for better or worse.”
  • Vincent Cassel and FLAUNT Maganzie
    “In Hollywood there’s politics; young actors have to do big, stupid movies to eventually be a box office figure and have access to great directors, stuff like that. But in France the market is a little different. In a minute, you know everybody, so you stick to what you like because, otherwise, you won’t be able to come back to it.”


You can now take a look at RowThree’s bookmarks at any time of your choosing simply by clicking the “delicious” button in the upper right of the page. It looks remarkably similar to this: