‘Godzilla’ trailer: King of Monsters strikes terror in first teaser

Dec. 10, 2013 | 10:57 a.m.

The first full-length trailer for “Godzilla” was out Tuesday morning, revealing plenty of tension, copious destruction and an enormous, havoc-wreaking kaiju.

“Godzilla”  is directed by Gareth Edwards, whose ambitious independent film “Monsters” garnered critical praise for its mash-up of big visual effects and small art-house atmosphere in 2010. Despite the enormous scale of the remake, the trailer seems to emphasize the ordinary people who get caught in the monster’s wake.

The teaser begins with a group of military troops preparing to jump from a plane and face off against Godzilla.

“I realize not all of you have had hands-on experience, and frankly, none of us have ever faced a situation quite like this one before,” their commander tells them. “But I would not be asking any one of you to take this leap if I did not have complete faith in your ability to succeed. Your courage will never be more needed than it is today.”

As the troops dive through the sky, plumes of red smoke trail behind them, and their breath comes in frantic gasps.

The King of all Monsters himself is little more than a silhouette in the trailer, though evidence of his strength and enormity is seen in flattened city streets and smashed-through skyscrapers.

Director Gareth Edwards is photographed in Hollywood on Aug. 23, 2010. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Director Gareth Edwards is photographed in Hollywood on Aug. 23, 2010. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

The trailer also offers a glimpse at several members of the cast, which includes “Breaking Bad” star Bryan Cranston, Aaron Taylor-Johnson (“Kick-Ass”), Ken Watanabe (“Inception”) and Elizabeth Olsen (“Oldboy”).

At Comic-Con International in San Diego this summer, Cranston said that Edwards’ indie-film background is partially what attracted him to taking the role.

“It was fantastic because he was able to make a monster movie also into a character-driven component where you really felt for these people,” Cranston said of “Monsters.” “And that’s what he transformed this ‘Godzilla’ into.”

Olsen agreed, noting that despite the movie’s big budget, filming “Godzilla” was an intimate experience.

“It felt small,” she said. “It felt creative. I never waited around for two hours for a setup. We were just on set the whole time, going at it. It was like an independent production, really.”

Legendary Pictures has been drumming up hype for the film since it was first announced at Comic-Con 2012. Leading up to the trailer release, the studio posted mysterious video snippets on mutoresearch.net, a promotional site designed to look like a government research portal, with streaming code and static-y sound effects.

The film is slated for a May 16, 2014, theatrical release.

– Noelene Clark | @NoeleneClark | Google+

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