Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Mac » Wed Sep 27, 2017 11:25 pm

I'm looking forward to this 100x more than I am the stiff cartoon.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby jellydonut25 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 12:37 am

I feel like between everyone here and my Godzilla friends online and IRL, I'll have read the book without reading it.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Geno » Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:40 pm

Mac wrote:I'm looking forward to this 100x more than I am the stiff cartoon.


For real. I'm sure the anime will be a decent time waster but this has been in the works for almost a decade and will surely deliver. We're only a couple of days away from release and I'm stoked. Got it on pre-order already.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby jellydonut25 » Fri Sep 29, 2017 1:29 am

Some people have been getting theirs early already and the exquisite praise is actually making me think when I find work, I'll be ordering this (assuming it's still in print)
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Geno » Fri Oct 06, 2017 9:04 pm

The book just came in. I've been hooked for an hour straight and the information on Honda's life and first two films are really interesting so far. I'm only 62 pages in but it's great. Well worth the purchase. There's also some great photos.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby lhb412 » Sun Oct 08, 2017 12:43 am

Hearing terrific things, and you^ say photos?
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Geno » Sun Oct 08, 2017 9:54 am

Yeah there's some great pictures of Honda from his personal life and him on the job. There's more on the website but some of these I haven't seen before. I think the critiques on the genre films could be a bit better but so far its good. I'm definitely hoping i get to see any of his more personal drama/comedy films someday, and it's regrettable he was stuck with a lesser genre for so long.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Mac » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:21 pm

Mac wrote:I'm looking forward to this 100x more than I am the stiff cartoon.



For posterity's sake, GODZILLA PROJECT ANTICIPATION RANKINGS:

1) Honda Book
2) City Shrouded in Shadow
3) Godzilla 2

(chasm)

4) King Kong vs Godzilla 2
5) Anime Trilogy.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby canofhumdingers » Tue Oct 31, 2017 10:17 pm

My mother-in-law surprised me with this biography and a book called “The Big Book of Japanese Giant Monster Movies: the Lost Films” as birthday gifts.

Super excited to read this Honda biography. Thumbing through it, it looks like it’s going to be great. And yeah, the pictures are great!

As for the lost films book, I’d never even heard of it but it also looks quite interesting.

I read pretty much exclusively while traveling for work (home is too busy with little kids), so this should make for a fun couple of months.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Godzilla21 » Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:21 am

canofhumdingers wrote:My mother-in-law surprised me with this biography and a book called “The Big Book of Japanese Giant Monster Movies: the Lost Films” as birthday gifts.

Super excited to read this Honda biography. Thumbing through it, it looks like it’s going to be great. And yeah, the pictures are great!

As for the lost films book, I’d never even heard of it but it also looks quite interesting.

I read pretty much exclusively while traveling for work (home is too busy with little kids), so this should make for a fun couple of months.


The Lost Films is great. I’ve already read it twice. And the author is already working on a second ”Lost” book. You’ll be surprised on how many bat "OH GODZILLA! WHAT TERRIBLE LANGUAGE!" crazy projects that were not made through the years
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Geno » Sun Nov 05, 2017 1:46 pm

New interview with Godzisewski is up at Toho Kingdom.

http://www.tohokingdom.com/interviews/e ... -2017.html
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Mac » Sun Nov 05, 2017 4:32 pm

I like that a good portion of the interview is dedicated to All Monsters Attack :).
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby lhb412 » Sat Feb 10, 2018 9:24 pm

Finally digging into this (got it for Christmas) and am absolutely loving it so far. Nothing I'd read or heard so far in all my years of reading Godzilla books and magazines and special features on discs has given this level of insight into Ishiro Honda. I just stopped reading halfway through the production of the original Godzilla.

It was on Guillermo del Toro's commentary track for Pacific Rim where I first heard the story that Honda gathered everyone before making Godzilla '54 and told them that if anyone didn't believe in the project they should leave. I had never heard this before, and thought maybe GDT was conflating some different stories together - but no: the incident is recounted here.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby lhb412 » Sat Feb 17, 2018 2:39 am

Oh, my god. I had no idea Kenji Sahara did insane method acting stuff while making these movies!

Continuing to act amnesiac during the entire days filming on Rodan, going undercover as a buyer to study sleazy real estate types for Mothra vs. Godzilla, and friggin' pulling out one of his teeth to look the part in Matango!?!

Sahara was clearly the Jared Leto of the Godzilla series... only, you know, likable.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby tbeasley » Sat Feb 17, 2018 7:36 pm

Finished this a couple days ago and it's everything you would expect and well worth the 10+ year wait (I first heard about it way back on the Classic Media commentaries). It probably has the single greatest account on the making of the original Godzilla, and I imagine we here have read many a great article on how that film came about. Pair this with the accompanying chapter from August Ragone's Tsuburaya book, covering the more technical details on the film, and you've practically got everything you need to know about it. But the real meat of the book covers Honda's calmer, dramatic output. If that Criterion Godzilla set ever does happen, hopefully some of those non-genre films will follow too.

My only real nerdy nitpick is that the authors come across as 'Very Serious' in spots lamenting Godzilla's turn as a superhero in the 70s, the quality of later Godzilla films (although Honda didn't seem too impressed by them either), and there are digs at G2014 and Shin at the end of the book for (as they see it) not following Honda's worldview 100%. I knew about those going in which I thought was a bit funny considering they write about Honda's genre films being perceived as militaristic and nationalistic upon release, so certain viewpoints on Shin is just history repeating itself I guess.

There are a few spots like this in the book but this part in the introduction sums it up best -
The uneasy postwar Japan-US alliance underlies many of Honda's science fiction films, and while Godzilla and especially Mothra might be interpreted as somewhat anti-American, Honda was increasingly optimistic about the relationship. In his idealized world, America and the "new Switzerland" of Japan are leaders of a broad, United Nations-based coalition reliant on science and technology to protect mankind. Scientists are highly influential, while politicians are ineffective or invisible. The Japan Self-Defense Forces bravely defend the homeland and employ glorified, high-tech hardware; but military operations often fail, and force alone rarely repels the threat. Assistance often comes from monsters, a deus ex machine, or human ingenuity. Honda was also frequently concerned with the dehumanizing effects of technology, greed, or totalitarianism.


All that said though, I can't wait to see what Ed G and Ryfle have in store next. Ryfle has talked about updating Japan's Favorite Mon-Star, which would be great to see in a clean, simple layout like the Honda book.
Last edited by tbeasley on Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby lhb412 » Sat Feb 17, 2018 7:55 pm

tbeasley wrote:All that said though, I can't wait to see what Ed G and Ryfle have in store next. Ryfle has talked about updating Japan's Greatest Mon-Star, which would be great to see in a clean, simple layout like the Honda book.


That would be terrific!

Of course, what I'd really want to see is a book (or two or three) covering more than just Godzilla; a book on the entire genre or a Daiei/Gamera book.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby tbeasley » Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:11 am

He talks a bit about what he'd do to the text here...
Driscoll: It has been about ten years since the release of your book, and six Godzilla films have been released since then. Have you considered updating Mon-Star, or publishing a supplement book? With another new American Godzilla movie in the works, the timing seems right…

Ryfle: I’d like to update the book. It would have to be considerably rewritten and revamped, rather than just expanded to include the newer films. I’d look at it as an opportunity to fix some things that were done incorrectly in the original edition. The book has been sold out for several years—the original print run was only 10,000 copies—but you can still get a new copy from the publisher’s print-on-demand service. It’s rather outdated, though, as you know.

Driscoll: I really hope your new book comes together! What are some improvements you would like to make if you get the chance? Other than the information about the newer movies, what sort of content updates would you consider?

Ryfle: I would correct factual errors (there are a couple that are even more embarrassing, in my opinion, than what you cited in your Toho Kingdom review) and add new interviews and other material. I’d delete content that is now outdated or unnecessary due to the proliferation of information available online. Also, I'd probably cut the chapter on the Tristar film in half and make room for other, more interesting material.

I’m not happy with the tone of the writing in some parts of the book; it’s rather immature and sophomoric in places. And of course the layout and graphic design is a joke, even by 1990s standards. So, my goal would be to rewrite, streamline, update, expand and expound. Who knows if it will ever happen, though.

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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby lhb412 » Mon Feb 19, 2018 9:58 pm

Reading about how everyone at Toho hated Russ Tamblyn delighted me.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby lhb412 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 12:12 am

Finished it. Fantastic read. Must have for every kaiju fan. So many points in the history of the genre were made clearer to me.

Fascinated by how Honda became pigeonholed as a sci-fi director. The reason it happened was slightly different than what I expected.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby Joseph Goodman » Wed May 02, 2018 5:21 pm

The anecdote related in this book that I found most fascinating involved the tearful send-off Honda received from the Chinese villagers near the POW camp he was held at. The stories of what a gentleman Honda was have been widely related, but this one was new. For them to to think so well of a soldier from an invading army that unleashed such incomprehensible wickedness upon their country, speaks remarkably high of what kind of person Honda was.
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Re: Ishiro Honda Bio By Ed. Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle

Postby lhb412 » Wed May 02, 2018 9:35 pm

^ Man, that's a kicker.
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