Godzilla is once again menacing and immune to missiles.
Less than two weeks from now, Godzilla will be returning to theaters in his first Japanese-produced film since 2004’s Godzilla: Final Wars. In many ways, Final Wars was the culmination of Godzilla’s steady transition from villain to hero, as in the movie the King of the Monsters fought off multiple, more malicious kaiju, and in doing so also protected the earth from a plot hatched by treacherous, scheming extraterrestrials.
However, the upcoming Shin Godzilla (to be called Godzilla Resurgence in international markets), looks to have no interest in a Godzilla-saves-the-day narrative. Co-directors Hideaki Anno (best known as the creator of the relentlessly somber anime Evangelion, and Shinji Higuchi (director of the grim live-action Attack on Titan films) seem to be committed to portraying Godzilla as a terrifying, destructive force of nature that man has no way of reasoning with. If this heavy-hearted new trailer, put together by Anno himself, is anything to go by, this is not going to be the sort of movie where you’re supposed to root for Godzilla to smash buildings and walk through elevated train lines.
That’s not to say the title star won’t be causing extensive damage in Shin Godzilla, though. Previous promotional stills have shown him emerging from the sea in Kamakura, roughly an hour by train south of Tokyo. In the new trailer, we see the famous kaiju wreaking havoc on the Musashi Kosugi district of Kawasaki, Tokyo’s neighbor to the south.
▼ Musako, as the locals call it, has actually become a pretty popular place to live in the last few years, but a kaiju attack would probably put a damper on housing sales.
Later, Godzilla is shown crossing the Tamagawa River, which serves as the border between Kawasaki and Tokyo
▼ The locations of Kamakura (shown in red) and Musashi Kosugi (green) mean that if he takes an overland route, Godzilla’s path of destruction will be at least 27.3 kilometers (17 miles) long.
The trailer consistently depicts Godzilla’s presence as being like a natural disaster, with multiple emergency conferences being held to try to figure out how to deal with the gargantuan threat. At least one faction decides to have the Japan Self-Defense Forces try to take on the monster with tanks and helicopters, but unlike the farcical travesty that served as the end of the conflict in the American-made 1998 Godzilla, Anno does his star the courtesy of remembering that he’s impervious to standard military-grade weaponry.
▼ Even when every single missile hits the target!
The trailer ends with things looking bleak for humanity, as Godzilla glows ominously in the night while advancing on what’s ostensibly downtown Tokyo. Hopefully all those stern-faced government officials the trailers show will have a plan by July 29, when Shin Godzilla premiers.
Follow Casey on Twitter, where as a resident of Kanagawa he’s wondering if he should be stockpiling emergency supplies, seeing as how Godzilla is apparently going to be going right through his town.