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Saturday, February 14, 2015

Guest Post: Godzilla's Back! Ten Movies that Made the Monster Famous!

Godzilla films emerged as Japan's answer to King Kong. Over 60 years and 30 films have been created featuring the giant lizard with an unnatural hatred of Tokyo. Over the course of the long line of films, three distinct eras branched from the original film, creating the Showa, Heisei, and Millennium series'. Doubly adored for their high cheese-factor, and nostalgia, Godzilla films are a staple among monster movie enthusiasts and cult film lovers.

These films are not Oscar winner fodder, box office blockbusters, or cinematic achievements that stand up to the test of time. They are often cheap, with laughably bad costumes, and insane plots. Many have been relegated to the back of VHS catalogs or forgotten altogether, but some can be seen on YouTube, or via online streaming here. With more Godzillas (nearly 30, and counting) than you can shake an Oxygen Destroyer at, you know you’re in for a radioactively good time! Here’s ten films to get you started.

Film Summary: Time travelers arrive on Present Day Earth under false pretenses warning of the destruction of their world in the future by Godzilla. The ruse culminates in the arrival of King Ghidorah, who seeks to conquer Japan. The only obstacle in his way is Godzilla!
Rating: 6.00/10

9. Godzilla vs. Biollante (1989) 

Film Summary: Godzilla is risen from the grave and has had his DNA spliced with a rosebush, creating monster plant that Godzilla must fight off before it destroys everything. Part of the Heisei Godzilla movie era, a series of films known for bizarre films, plots, and action, this one does not disappoint.
Rating: 6.50/10

8. Godzilla (2014) 

Film Summary: A modern day Godzilla emerges in the United States to battle other enormous creatures (M.U.T.O’s, or “Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organisms”) which pose a threat to humanity.
Rating: 7.00/10

7. Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster (1964) 

Film Summary: Godzilla teams with Mothra and Rodan to destroy winged, three-headed creature, Ghidorah, who emerged from a meteorite. Faced with a monster even worse than he is, this is the first time Godzilla appears as a “hero”, protecting the people of Earth from an extraterrestrial threat.
Rating: 7.25/10

6. Destroy All Monsters (1968) 

Film Summary: Humankind at the mercy of the Kilaaks, a race of female extraterrestrials. Godzilla and a slew of giant monsters must fight off the shackles of mind control imposed on them by the lady alien overlords, leave their home on Monster Island, and join together to save humanity in this cult classic.
Rating: 7.50/10

5. Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (2003) 
Film Summary: Going toe to scaly toe and fist to robotic wing, the ultimate face-off between Mothra and Mechagodzilla takes place in Tokyo. The monsters have met before, but this battle is for keeps. Part of the “Millenium” series of Godzilla pictures.
Rating: 7.50/10

4. Godzilla vs. Destroyah (1995) 

Film Summary: A highly radioactive Godzilla fights to the death with a number of foes before he is, shockingly, killed off. The film also includes some hilarious scenes with Godzilla's offspring, Godzilla Jr.
Rating: 7.50/10

3. Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla (2002) 

Film Summary: Godzilla battles a Japanese government issued robotic version of himself, codenamed “Kiriyu.” The film concludes with an incredible final battle, and plenty of great special effects.
Rating: 7.50/10

2. Godzilla, Mothra, and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (2001) 

Film Summary: As the mouthful of a title implies, this film is an all-out war between gigantic foes, Godzilla, Mothra, and King Ghidorah. Godzilla is attempting to attack Japan once again, while his immortal enemies try, once again, to stop him before he can. This film is well known for its action sequences.
Rating: 8.00/10

1. Gojira (1954) 

Film Summary: The original Godzilla film introduced the world to the enormous, irradiated lizard with a bad attitude. 500 ft of radioactive fury, Godzilla crashes through Japanese villages in a blind rage. Can anyone stop him before it’s too late?
Rating: 8.50/10

This article is written by Beth Kelly -- a freelance blogger with a horror film addiction. Her primary interests include pulp cinema, analog photography and vintage film posters.
Follow her on Twitter @bkelly_88


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

The original has to be at the top. I did really dig last year's Godzilla though.
I've actually not seen two of those. (They are more recent.)

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

I agree. Haven't seen it, though. To be honest, I've only seen Godzilla vs. Biollante, the 97 version, and last year's version. Loved the latter!

Kaijinu said...

You know what's funny? All the movies on this list are the only Godzilla films I enjoyed the most.

(Though, I will squeeze in King Kong vs Godzilla somewhere there. And then there's Godzilla vs Gigan and Godzilla vs Megelon, despite their stock footage cheapiness)

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

I'm glad you enjoyed all of these. Not the biggest Godizlla fan, but last year's version I thoroughly enjoyed.