I had heard negative comments about the newest Godzilla incarnation, but came away pleasantly surprised, to find a reasonably cohesive, entertaining film, with nice effects, and terrific audio.
It’s a bit convoluted, but pay attention, and it all comes together.
But viewing the film, I came away wondering why it was such an international production, especially in these days of nationalism.
Why the Japanese, and Chinese involvement? Why the need for English actors?
There have been rumors for decades that the Godzilla creature is somehow predicated upon Japanese films, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.
We can trace these creatures back to the work of Windsor McCay, and his creation Gertie the Dinosaur, in 1914. In 1933, an other quintessential American film, King Kong set new standards for stop-motion animation.
But this is where things may get interesting, and many of us have been aware of the conspiracy theories for years. Sometime, decades ago, the camera negative of King Kong suspiciously went missing from the RKO vaults. There were whispers that it may have been stolen by a cranky employee, and sold to a collector. But recent reports, mention that it may have been seen in Japan.
Which begs the question, What precisely are the Japanese holding over the heads of the Americans? The answer may exist in the fact that there was a virtually unknown American production, released in April of 1956, entitled Godzilla, King of the Monsters, which starred Raymond Burr, and an all-American cast. That American production, used the latest in stop-motion effects.
Rumor is, that Toho, took this film, re-filmed numerous sequences, adding cheap effects (some say, a man in a rubber suit) and a myriad of Japanese actors, and took credit for its creation, much as they did for Key of Keys.
They then followed this up, with a plethora of other monster films, all with Japanese casts, many actually filmed in Canada. This went on for years.
But who holds the original negative to King Kong, and how does it affect the false information that these creatures were Japanese creations?
Proper research will bring the truth.
Obviously linking to missing negative, and the Japanese connection, Warner Bros., (remember, they own King Kong), has given work to two fine foreign actors whose work I admire – Ken Watanabe and Ziyi Zhang – but these roles could have been played by Americans, except that they perpetuate the foreign connection.
Then there’s the ingenue, the young teen who saves the day – played by Millie Brown, some TV actress.
One could easily have cast Julia Butters, who with a bit of makeup, could easily play a young teen. She could probably play Churchill if she desired.
Ah, and more British actors taking the food from Americans – Sally Hawkins and Charles Dance. I admire their work greatly, especially Mr. Dance, but was Ian McShane, one of the great American actors not available? He was wonderful in John Wick 3, and what would Deadwood have been without him?
But I’m getting off topic, and the reason for this thread to is to make note of the fact that the newest Godzilla incarnation is a very decent film, and worthy of a spin.
It’s a wonderful addition to one’s growing 4k library.
Now, if someone can find that original King Kong negative, and get it back to it’s rightful owner…
Image – 5
Audio – 5 (Dolby Atmos)
Pass / Fail – Pass
It's a wonderful addition to one's growing 4k library.