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Monday, April 21, 2008

A product of the bomb, yes surely. But far more than that Godzilla is a metaphor for the bomb, as the movie makes clear in almost every frame. This is not your parents' Godzilla, the 1956 recut with Raymond Burr inserted as American interlocutor, a paragon of western stoicism with his boxy suit and pipe held aloft like a talisman. The Japanese original is far darker and more seamless, a topical fantasy of uncommon power. It may not be a great film, but it is an important one, a surprisingly sombre meditation on means and ends, on when exactly the price of peace becomes too costly to pay.
The Guardian apparently gave away DVDs of the original 1954 Godzilla with yesterday's issue; at CommentIsFree, Christopher Orr explains why Gojira is not just another monster movie. Of course, most monster movies aren't "just another monster movie," either; in fact almost none of them are...