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Godzilla

Godzilla (or Gojira, ゴジラ) refers to a series of monster (kaiju) films made in Japan. Godzilla was originally a radioactively mutated and revived dinosaur. It died at the end of the original 1954 film. Subsequent fims in the series retconned the first movie by assuming that Godzilla wasn't killed, and that the body of the monster was never found.

The series was revamped in 1985 with "Godzilla 1985"; this movie was created as a direct sequel to the 1954 film, and ignores the continuity of the previous sequels. Known as the "Heisei" series (for the ruling emperor of the time), the continuity ended in 1995's Godzilla vs. Destroyah after a run of seven films. The reason for the continuity shift was based on a realization that the marketing of the movies had removed the reason it was so loved. When it was discovered that Godzilla was popular with children, sequels were toned down in obvious screen violence, and Godzilla was made out to be a good guy instead of an indestructible abomination of the mistakes of Man. Characters such as "son of Godzilla" (a dimunitive chubby replica that blew smoke rings) were introduced. However, the further Godzilla was taken away from his roots, the less popular he became. Hence, Gozilla 1985 brought the series back to form.

Godzilla was originally an allegory for the effects of the atomic bomb, and the unintended consequences that such weapons might have on our world.

Films have been made over the last 5 decades, each reflecting the social and political climate in Japan. All but 1 of the 26 films were produced by Toho, a version was made in 1998 and set in the United States by the makers of Independence Day (ID4) and is widely disregarded by most Godzilla fans. Toho immediately followed it with Godzilla 2000.

Much of Godzilla's popularity in America can be credited with TV broadcasts of the Toho Studios monster movies during the 1960s and 1970s. The American company UPA contracted with Toho to distribute its monster movies of the time, and UPA continues to hold the license today for the Godzilla films of the 1960s and 1970s.


Filmography

  1. Godzilla, King of the Monsters
  2. Gigantis the Fire Monster
  3. King Kong vs Godzilla
  4. Godzilla vs The Thing
  5. Ghidorah the Three Headed Monster
  6. Monster Zero
  7. Godzilla vs The Sea Monster
  8. Son of Godzilla
  9. Destroy All Monsters
  10. Godzilla's Revenge
  11. Godzilla vs The Smog Monster
  12. Godzilla on Monster Island
  13. Godzilla vs Megalon
  14. Godzilla vs The Cosmic Monster
  15. Terror of Mechagodzilla
  16. The Return of Godzilla
  17. Godzilla vs Biollante
  18. Godzilla vs King Ghidorah
  19. Godzilla vs Mothra
  20. Godzilla vs MechaGodzilla
  21. Godzilla vs Destroyer
  22. Godzilla (Hollywood version)
  23. Godzilla 2000
  24. Godzilla vs Megaguiros
  25. Godzilla GMK
  26. Godzilla vs MechaGodzilla (2003)

See also: kaiju, Bambi Meets Godzilla



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