Film | by Shane “Jet Jaguar” Hnetka
There’s a new Batman actor and, as usual, fans hate him before he’s shot a single scene. Variety reports Robert Pattinson will take over the role but before anything has even been made official, fans are petitioning for his removal. Fandom has become more and more entitled. People need to learn to relax.
The Big G
Godzilla is 65 this year! The city-stomping monster has been in 32 Toho Studios films, along with three American movies and more than a few TV shows. The original Japanese 1954 Godzilla was inspired by 1953’s The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, about a dinosaur that wakes up after an Arctic nuclear test then goes on a rampage. The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms was based on a Ray Bradbury short story and featured amazing stop-motion effects from Ray Harryhausen.
When Toho made Godzilla they wanted to use stop-motion animation but it was too expensive, so they went with a man in a rubber suit. Those low-budget beginnings begat a genre of giant monster, or kaiju, movies that are still being made today.
The 2014 first film in Legendary Studios’ big-budget Godzilla series was okay, but its new, fun-looking sequel brings back the classic Toho monsters Mothra, Rodan and the evil, three-headed alien dragon Ghidorah. Excellent.
A Fistful Of Monsters
Mothra, a giant moth, first appeared in theatres with 1961’s Mothra, in which an evil businessman wants to exploit Infant Island’s inhabitants — particularly two fairies — despite warnings that their winged god and protector will save them. Mothra battled Godzilla in 1964’s Mothra vs. Godzilla but they appeared together in many more movies, usually as allies.
Rodan appeared in the standalone 1956 film Rodan. Miners discover prehistoric dragonflies that have been killing workers and local townspeople. Turns out they’re just food for a volcano-sized pterosaur. Cities are duly flattened. Rodan joined the Godzilla series in the 1960s starting with Ghidorah, the Three-headed Monster, which had Godzilla team up with Rodan and Mothra to fight King Ghidorah.
Godzilla: King Of The Monsters has all four kaiju, and probably more. But are Mothra and Rodan the bad guys? Or is this going to be like Ghidorah, the Three-headed Monster or All Monsters Attack, where it’s everyone against Ghidorah?
I’m good with any and all giant monster fight combinations, as long as Mothra is good and Ghidorah is the villain. Oh, and cities get wrecked. That’s important too.
Godzilla: King Of The Monsters opens May 31.
Shane Hnetka is a made-in-Saskatchewan film and comic book nerd. His column “Sunday Matinee” appears weekly on our blog.