Anticipation for this admirable attempt to wipe Roland Emmerich’s 1998 abomination from our collective memories was ramped up by some peerless trailer campaigning. With the title character hidden from view and 2014’s most eclectic cast pushed up front, the turnstiles span to the tune of an impressive $93m.
However, the steep drop-off over the next few weeks suggested that something was amiss. Readers of Rolling Stone magazine recently voted Godzilla number one in their Worst Film of The Year poll (didn’t they see Grace of Monaco?), so what gives? Gareth Edwards’s quest to bring intelligence and authenticity to the table and his Spielbergian refusal to show off the Big Man until the third act were effective and laudable.
This sober tone, however, couldn’t paper over the inherent silliness – explain to me again how Ken Watanabe knew exactly what Godzilla’s plans were at every turn? – and it often felt that he’d forgotten that he was directing a film about a 350 foot lizard with radioactive breath scrapping with two enormous moths. Still with a worldwide gross of $507m, Godzilla will return.
6. The Amazing Spider-Man 2
(Adopts comedy Yorkshire accent) “I remember the days when we used to dream of making $202 million domestic. Aye, them were the days.” Despite the acclaim that Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone have received for their performances, questions have to be asked about whether it was a wise idea to have rebooted the Spider-Man franchise in the first place. Spidey used to be the jewel in Marvel’s crown; their Superman, and Sam Raimi’s films were box office behemoths.
TASM2’s $202 haul sees it take over from TASM1 as the lowest grossing Spider-Man movie to date, and plans for more sequels have now been replaced with talk of expanding the Spider-Man “universe.” It was unforgivable to repeat the mistake of Spider-Man 3 and chuck THREE villains into the mix (yes Avi Arad, we’re pointing at you), and it was equally careless to fluff what should have been the most unexpected and poignant death scene of the year.