1) they do a good job of portraying Japan without being racist - except for the fact that just about everyone speaks with perfect English accents and that a white gaijin (foreigner) is throwing around orders at a nuclear power plant at the beginning of the film. Yeah right. But they use actual Japanese actors (err.. one) at least. Watanabe Ken!!!!
However. Evoking the fear and pain of Tohoku earthquake and subsequent fukushima meltdown in certain scenes (Hawaii, Japanese power plant) I won't spoil, was really, really cheap. Hollywood evokes the terror of 9/11 all the time, so using disasters as an easy hot button isn't new or surprising. But for God's sake, we haven't even fully rebuilt Miyako yet. We only just this year even confirmed the death toll. Couldn't they wait a couple more years for God's sake? Too soon, man.
2) the action scenes were pretty cool - as to be expected from a high-budget Hollywood film. Anyone giving this movie a high rating is probably thinking of the special effects, because most people seem to be easily dazzled by flashy CGI. But the CGI is all this film has got. This production team was so lazy they even CGI'ed friggin' Mt. Fuji instead of filming on location. Seriously, why bother even using real actors? Make yourself another Final Fantasy travesty, why don't ya. It's too obvious... and there's nothing worse than really obvious CGI.
But the story is terrible and filled with plot holes. Just because the concept is fantastic doesn't mean you have to make it COMPLETELY implausible. If a movie that takes itself as seriously as Godzilla completely dispenses with believability, it interferes with the audiences ability to escape into the movie because they're too busy saying, "yeah right" to themselves. When I say "implausible" I'm not even talking about radiation-eating giant creatures. That's the most believable bit of the whole movie. Maybe they used all their budget on the actress/actors' and CGI team's salaries, so they didn't have enough money to hire decent writers.. ?