Having never been pre-disposed to big monster epics, I have always viewed Godzilla as a clumsy, albeit well-intentioned, stab at entertaining the masses of Japanese audience members that seem to, for whatever reason, get a kick out of what was grand scale potential with pitiful special effects and limited storylines.
Didn't float my boat, if you'll pardon the pun, having seen this already.
This is an alternative take on the franchise, setting the scenes just after the end of World War 2, again from a Japanese perspective, but prior to the original Godzilla, hence the minus one monicker. This is much more a human story than you will have previously experienced and Godzilla only rarely makes an appearance of any note. Yes Godzilla is there, but really, it isn't about the giant rampaging lizard with a bad attitude, more the story of one mans' attempt to get the horror of his war out of his system and Godzilla gives him the perfect foil to exorcise his demons.
Almost more Western than Eastern in its delivery, the is catnip for Godzilla fans everywhere, with one eye slanted firmly in the direction of North America. It isn't obvious to the casual viewer maybe, but it is clear that Takashi Yamazaki is keen to paint with as broad a stroke as possible for the benefit of everyone. Even I, the most ambivalent of viewers, was drawn in by the often poignant, even romantic, tale that employed the monster as a flag for invention, passion, endeavour and defiance.
Altogether, a great addition which puts the majority of what came before firmly in its place. Recommended.