Godzilla Raids Again

GodzillaI’m planning on using the rest of the year to try and tackle the Godzilla reviews I haven’t got around to yet. The first one is the sequel to the original Gojira. Was the King of the Monster resurrected properly or was it far from his great second coming?

Tsukioka and Kobayashi are pilots who work for a fishing company. While on a routine patrol they come across Godzilla and Anguirus engaged in combat. Despite their efforts in the previous movie, Godzilla is still on a rampage and now there is no weapon which can stop him. Will humanity be able to survive the return of Godzilla?

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The film is awkward. Its not entirely its own fault as the original Gojira was an incredible film which was able to become an iconic movie even out of the Kaiju community thanks to its message against nuclear war. In comparison, Godzilla Raids Again doesn’t really have a deep story to tell. Kobayashi wants a girlfriend, the malicious acts of humans draws Godzilla’s attention, Godzilla and Anguirus fight and someone sacrifices themselves to once again take down Godzilla. Nothing here really stands out as being exceptional. It could be argued the film is a look at how there is both good and bad in humanity but you really have to reach for this message.

This film also introduces the world to Anguirus who shows up too soon, his origin isn’t explained, and dies just as easily. They really don’t take the time to explain where Anguirus comes from, he’s simple there but they do take the time explain WHY he is fighting Godzilla. Turns out its in his nature to fight against “war-like predators” like Godzilla. After building up how Anguirus is a force to fight against Godzilla and framing it as if he will be the savior who will take down the giant monster and save the world, he is killed in the very next battle. Once he’s gone the film trudges to its ending at a very unsatisfying pace. Luckily, Anguirus would return and would find a place as being Godzilla’s brother in arms and help him to fight off many an invading threat. Unfortunately, his initial appearance isn’t really worth going back to visit even for die hard fans.

It should probably be noted this movie has the legendary “Banana Oil” dub line by George Takei in it. Yes, its a funny bit of old school dubbing but this joke is lost if you don’t watch the dub version of the film and instead try to watch it subtitled. It’s an amusing joke but still not going to save the entire movie.

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This movie was the last of the Godzilla films I watched. It took so long to track it down because of the fact its release on DVD took forever to finally come around. Frankly, it was not worth wait. The studio really didn’t know what to do with Godzilla in his first sequel and it would take a while before they really figured out what to properly do with him at all. Sure sequels which come out have to live in the shadow of what preceded them but frankly, in comparison Son of Kong was a much better film than Godzilla Raids Again ever was.

RATING: C-

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