With the release of the new American reboot/remake/sequel of the classic 1954 Godzilla by Ishirō Honda, I thought it was high time I shared one of my guiltiest of all film pleasures growing up.
Godzilla and everything kaiju I ate up as a wee lad growing up during the 80’s. There really wasn’t anything on Saturday morning and afternoon tv other than reruns of badly dubbed Japanese monsters flicks and anime. One such film was Ishirō Honda’s very own King Kong vs. Godzilla. Yes, you read that correctly. The King of All Monsters fought the Eight Wonder of the World to decide once and for all who was the greatest giant monster of all-time.
The film itself wasn’t that great when I look back on it. Hell, even I had a sort of understanding even as an 8-year old kid that King Kong vs. Godzilla was a pretty bad film, but I still had a blast watching it. The film lacked in coherent storyline and important themes of man vs. nature and the psychological impact of the two atomic bombings of the US on Japan to end World War II wasn’t at all evident in this monster mash-up.
What the film had was King Kong fighting Godzilla. It was like watching two of the greatest icons of youths of my generation duking it out for our pleasure. It didn’t need to have a story or worry about whether it’s depiction of the natives on King Kong’s island was even remotely racist (it was so racist). All it needed to do was show everyone the very fight they’ve been waiting for. Fans of both monster wouldn’t have to wait forever to see the fight happen. This wasn’t going to be a dream fight never to happen like Mayweather vs. Pacquiao.
So, while King Kong vs. Godzilla was never one of the good entries in the Godzilla filmography (I think it was probably the worst) it more than made up for being one of the most campiest and entertaining entries in the Big Guy’s decades long history.
If there ever was a film from my youth that needs to be remade it would be King Kong vs. Godzilla and only Guillermo Del Toro should be chosen to direct it.