I watched this movie twice today, back-to-back, for some reason. What the hell, right? What better way to get through a hang-over while relaxing on a Sunday afternoon than watching Godzilla movies lol! As a result, some more thoughts are warranted.
In response to the criticism of the bad American acting, I do agree, these guys are truly awful. But the way I see it, inept occidental actors have always been a part of Japanese tokusatsu movies, going back to Harold S. Conway and George Furness in the late fifties and early sixties. With the exception of Robert Dunham, if you want some REALLY horrible U.S. "thespians", check out the Japanese cut of the original Mothra
. That one hurts, for being such an otherwise great movie. So yeah, I've always felt that they were kind of a "juiced-in" hallmark of these movies. I've just trained myself to roll with it, I guess. They're good for a laugh, anyway. The "actors" that play Wilson and Gerenchiko at the very least have a competent way with the language, and they're effective villians, in a corny, goof-ball, pulp kind of way.
To my taste, Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah
is one of Godzilla's finest showcases. That doesn't necessarily mean it's a great film though. In my mind's eye, it's good enough from a basic filmmaking standpoint, and so long as it plays to the strengths of what a great Godzilla movie is supposed to be, then as far as I'm concerned, that's all it really needs to accomplish. I don't mind saying this here, but a great Godzilla movie does not mean that it's also a "great film". We all know what these movies really are, or atleast we should know. Please don't misunderstand, I'm not putting these movies down in any way, I'm just trying to put things in perspective insofar as I view them. To be honest, I wouldn't even include Ishiro Honda's best films among the greatest ever made, though they are great nonetheless. In the entirety of the tokusatsu genre, if there were any movies that I would consider to stand above and beyond the rest and give props as serious works of filmic art, in one way or they other, they would be Honda's original Godzilla
, The Mysterians
, Godzilla vs. The Thing
in either version, the un-cut Matango
...maybe the original versions of Rodan
and Mothra '61
and Gamera 3
. That's it. Now, that's not to say that the best of the rest are by any means bad movies. On the contrary, I think everything from Ghidrah
, to Frankenstein Conquers the World
, from Gamera 2
to Godzilla versus The Sea Monster
succeeds as surpemely entertaining, escapist productions, made by extremely talented professional filmmakers. And as a die-hard fan of this genre, I find it difficult sometimes to let the flaws detract from something taht otherwise works so well for me. Of course, that's not always the case though. If something is so bad, then you just can't ignore it. Most of the problems with Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah
stem from sloppy screenwriting, some imperfections in the effects department and some unintentionally funny moments. I grant all of that to the film's detractors, but all I'm saying is that these flaws, however major or minor do not detract from what I consider to be a great Godzilla movie. Yeah, I said it, and I'll say it again. I consider Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah
to be a great Godzilla movie, because it contains everything a great Godzilla movie should have, a terrific Ifukube score (notice, I mentioned Ifukube first; I think it sometimes becomes lost on people just how instrumental he was in making these movies what they are), a conscious effort on the part of the filmmakers in connecting the symbolism of the character to history of Japan, an engaging story that works to the benefit of the monster action (something that would be sorely lacking in most of the following Heisei movies) and some truly spectacular effects sequences showcasing Godzilla and his adversaries in all of their glory. It really is a sight to see Godzilla in mortal combat with King Ghidorah and his mechanical up-grade. Given the sheer bulk and massive size of both kaiju costumes, it really is astonishing to me that Kawakita was able to stage such exciting battle sequences. Ken Satsuma and the stuntman in the Ghidorah suit must have been in hell the entire time. For the monster fights alone, sometimes I'm actually surprised that there are many fans that actually hate this movie. But as I've stated before, I do understand where they're coming from.
I'm a fan of all kinds of movies. Old movies, new movies, black and white, color, silent, sound, American, foreign, etc. You name it, I'll give it a shot. I watch Turner Classic Movies on a consistent basis. Movies are just my thing. I'm also a HUGE fan of Godzilla movies, and most anything related to them. I guess I feel a special kinship with Eiji Tsuburaya because he was known to have been the type to always look for the good things in a movie, no matter how bad it may be. That's how I feel, which makes me think that I probably wouldn't be able to make it as a film critic. I'm not all that well-versed in the studies of film as an art-form or as a craft, much to my regret. All I know is what I see, and how I feel. I've watched plenty of films over and over again, and I've read alot of books on film. I love talking about movies every chance I get, and at the very least, I do my very best to do them justice. In regards to Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah
, I hope I've done just that.
I know I've rambled on for quite a bit over the past few posts, and I apologize if I sound redundant. If some of you have taken the time to read my thoughts, I want you to know that I really appreciate you're patience, and truly value any insight you may have. Please feel free to share you're views, as I look forward to hearing from you.
Okay, I've finished waxing-poetic for the day
Have a nice night, to one and all!
"EVERYONE FORGET YOUR TROUBLES! ENJOY YOURSELVES!THERE'S NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT!" - Gigantis The Fire Monster
"It was HUGE...It was...IT WAS LIKE A MONSTER!!! Suddenly the rocks rose...ALIVE!" - Godzilla 1985