• Review Date: May 16, 2014
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Release Year: 2014
  • Running Time: 123 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Iconic movie monster once again wreaks massive destruction.
  • Review Date: May 16, 2014
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Release Year: 2014
  • Running Time: 123 minutes





What parents need to know

Positive messages

Man shouldn't interfere with the course of nature. There should be respect between the planet and the people living in it.

Positive role models

Family matters a lot in this movie. Joe Brody is a devoted husband who won't quit until he figures out the truth behind his wife's death. His son, Ford, grows up to be a caring, committed husband and father and a son who tries to understand his dad, who's been damaged by the loss of his wife. He also helps save a city and watches over a small boy when the boy is briefly separated from his family.


Destruction everywhere, though very little blood is shown. Entire cities are leveled, and creatures stomp on humans as if they're just toys. They yank subway cars of the tracks, pull boats from the water, and battle each other in huge clashes. The carnage is high. Kids and animals are shown in peril and scared, needing help (including a bus full of children on a bridge being destroyed by a monster). Bodies are shown strewn about after a catastrophe. Early in the movie, a husband sees his wife die behind a glass window when she gets trapped and something happens to her.


Couples kiss.


Infrequent use of words like "bull," "hell," and "damn" and a few uses of "s--t."


An LG phone is seen.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

People drink a casual glass of wine in one scene.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to that this take on Godzilla has relentless, near-constant sci-fi action/destruction on a massive scale. Although there isn't anything particularly gory, the smashing and crushing and pounding might be scary for younger kids, especially since some scenes feature children extremely frightened and afraid for their lives (a child also witnesses the destruction of his parents' workplace from afar). Early in the movie, a man watches his wife die as part of a terrible accident; her death impacts him significantly. Expect some mild swearing, a few kisses between a couple, and minor social drinking. Fans of the original film will be glad to know that the giant radioactive monster, when he does make an appearance, is still impressive after all these years (and better special effects).

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Fifteen years after losing his wife (Juliette Binoche) in a horrific nuclear power-plant accident, scientist Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston) is still obsessed with the incident. He enlists his son, Ford (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), to help him get back to their old house, long quarantined after the accident. They soon discover that something very wrong is afoot -- and that they may be dealing with the awakening of giant creatures long lying dormant. The military is trying to solve the problem, but perhaps the best one to address it isn't a human at all, but rather another beast that's been roaming the seas for years: GODZILLA.

Is it any good?


Godzilla is both thrilling and broodier than you might expect for this kind of a movie. It's exciting because the special effects are fantastic, a far cry from the Godzillas of yore, and because the actors, though underused -- especially Cranston -- bring a level of authenticity to characters, something we don't often get in this genre. And when we finally do see Godzilla, after a prolonged wait, it's a thrilling moment. In fact, any time Godzilla makes an appearance on screen, it's interesting. 

Unfortunately, there's not enough Godzilla in this movie and two too many otherworldly creatures, specifically the M.U.T.O.s (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism). Godzilla fights them, as do the humans, but they feel more like a distraction. And the dialogue is clunky in places, prone to over-explanation. (A sample line, told with a straight face: "It's not the end of the world," uttered, of course, when the world clearly is ending.) Each scene is so laden with portent and overwhelmed by Alexander Desplat's foreboding score that it's hard to differentiate one moment from the next. But the finish? It's a crowd-pleaser, which just bumps the movie into three-star territory.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about Godzilla's violence and destruction. How does the impact of the kind of massive-scale devastation seen in this kind of a movie compare to more realistic violence? Do you think these kinds of movies can desensitize viewers to violence?

  • Why do you think Godzilla has been remade so many times? What do you think filmmakers hope to achieve by remaking a classic? How often do you prefer remakes to the original?

  • Talk about the idea of man subverting nature. Do you think humanity has done that? And if so, what do you think the effects are? How does the movie address this theme?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:May 16, 2014
DVD release date:September 16, 2014
Cast:Bryan Cranston, Elizabeth Olsen, Aaron Taylor-Johnson
Director:Gareth Edwards
Studio:Warner Bros.
Genre:Science Fiction
Topics:Monsters, ghosts, and vampires
Run time:123 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:intense sequences of destruction, mayhem and creature violence

This review of Godzilla was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Kid, 10 years old January 11, 2015


I loved it it was pretty good a bit hard to understand at first but I got in in the end
What other families should know
Too much violence
Adult Written byizzyrocks December 12, 2014


The effects was awesome and its on the big screen! Godzilla is back and its been 10 years! I loved the movie it was sad and had some action scenes. There were some scenes were they kissed but other it was amazing! Great job I really liked it!
What other families should know
Too much violence
Teen, 14 years old Written byWhalelover1000 November 15, 2014

Godzilla is great, but may be too intense for most kids.

Godzilla has it all, brilliant CGI, great acting, suspense, and of course, Godzilla himself! But as great as the film is, it could a bit intense sometimes for some kids. - Violence: There is a brief scene of a tsunami crashing over Hawaii (caused by Godzilla's arrival). Godzilla briefly destroys a bridge containing buses full of children (nobody is killed or hurt in any way). Godzilla and the MUTOs battle in huge clashes (there is huge battle between towards the end) Cities are destroyed by the MUTOs. There is also explosions, peril, and a few jump scare scenes. Bodies are strewn about after a MUTO attack. Monsters squash humans as they are nothing but ants. Spoiler Alert: Two minor characters die, both deaths are a bit upsetting. - Sex: Ford and Elle briefly kiss passionately-- they are interrupted by a phone call. That is just about it. - Language: sh-t is used a few times. - Drinking and Drugs: Ford and Elle drink a glass of wine in one scene. Overall, I recommend this movie for kids 10 and up. And not only is this movie thrilling and exciting, but it is perfect for all Godzilla fans.
What other families should know
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking


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