A Critical History and Filmography of Toho’s Godzilla Series, 2d ed.


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About the Book

This thoroughly updated and revised critical account of the Godzilla movie franchise explores the fascinating story behind Japan’s most famous movie monster and its development from black-and-white arthouse allegory to international commercial juggernaut. Reviled by critics but boasting a dedicated cult following, the films of the Godzilla franchise provide a unique window into the national identities of both Japan and the United States. This work focuses on how differences in American and Japanese culture, as well as differences in their respective film industries, underlie the discrepancies between the American and Japanese versions of the films. It features detailed filmographic data for both the American and Japanese versions of each film, including plot synopses, cast, credits, and detailed production notes.

About the Author(s)

David Kalat is a film historian and a forensic technologist. He has contributed audio commentaries to the home video editions of numerous classic movies, written extensively for Turner Classic Movies and other publications. He lives in La Grange Park, Illinois.

Bibliographic Details

David Kalat
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 286
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2017 [2010]
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7294-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3265-0
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface to the New Edition      1
Introduction      3
A Note on the Text      9

PART ONE: King Kong vs. Godzilla (1954–1963)      11
1. G for Giant      13
2. Gojira      20
3. Godzilla Conquers America (and America Conquers Godzilla)      25
4. Godzilla, King of the Monsters!      31
5. Godzilla Raids Again      34
6. Rodan      41
7. Varan the Unbelievable      46
8. Mothra      51
9. King Kong vs. Godzilla      55
10. Tsuburaya Enterprises      60

PART TWO: Monsterland (1964–1969)      65
11. Mothra vs. Godzilla      67
12. Ghidrah, The Three- Headed Monster      72
13. Invasion of Astro- Monster      82
14. Monsters Inc.      88
15. Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster      94
16. Son of Godzilla      98
17. Destroy All Monsters      103
18. All Monsters Attack      106

PART THREE: Something Funny’s Going On (1970–1975)      111
19. Survival of the Silliest      113
20. Godzilla vs. Hedorah      117
21. Godzilla vs. Gigan      123
22. Godzilla vs. Ultraman      128
23. Godzilla vs. Megalon      132
24. Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla      136
25. Terror of Mechagodzilla      140
26. The Crook, the Geek, the Reporter, and His Lover      146

PART FOUR: The Return of Godzilla (1977–1995)      149
27. Waiting for Godzilla      151
28. The Return of Godzilla      156
29. Godzilla 1985      162
30. Godzilla vs. Biollante      169
31. Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah      179
32. Godzilla and Mothra: The Battle for Earth      184
33. Godzilla vs. the Gryphon      191
34. Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II      197
35. Godzilla vs. Space Godzilla      202
36. Godzilla vs. Destoroyah      210

PART FIVE: The Godzilla Millennium (1998–2005)      215
37. Godzilla vs. Godzilla      217
38. Godzilla      225
39. Godzilla 2000      230
40. Godzilla x. Megaguirus      235
41. Godzilla, Mothra, and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All- Out Attack      238
42. Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla      243
43. Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S.      247
44. Godzilla Final Wars      249

Epilogue      257
Chapter Notes      259
Bibliography      269
Index      273

Book Reviews & Awards

“impressive production notes…scholarship is commendable in its harnessing of details from both sides of the Pacific…sure to please Godzilla fans”—Library Journal; “should become the definitive work on this important film series…highly recommended”—ARBA; “the ultimate word on the series…all-encompassing history of the building-stomping franchise will be required reading”—Film Review; “thorough evaluation…the creature’s origins are brilliantly documented”—Samhain; “no stone is left unturned in this deeply researched book…a treasure and a pleasure to read”—Toxic Graveyard; “excellent”—Big Reel; “fascinating”—Little Shoppe of Horrors; “detailed credits, lengthy synopsis and commentary”—Classic Images.