Godzilla Raids Again/Review
From The Grindhouse Cinema Database
While out scouting for fish over the ocean off the coast of Japan, two airplane pilots named Tsukioka (Hiroshi Koizumi) and Kobayashi (Minoru Chiaki) come across Godzilla and another giant spiked back creature known as Angorus battling on an island. The monsters fight until they both fall right off a cliff into the ocean, dissapearing beneath the foamy water. The two men quickly head back to Osaka and tell the local police and Dr. Tadokoro (Masao Shimizu) a zooologist about their amazing encounter. Dr Tadokoro gives the men a book on dinosaurs and they look through it until they find a photo of the type of dinosaur that Angorus is.
The two monsters soon reappear in Osaka in which they continue their fighting destroying the city including Osaka castle. The city is blacked out because they have found out Godzilla is attracted to light. During this sequence we also get introduced to some criminals who are being held by the police. To distance themselves from the destruction of Godzilla and Angorus in Osaka and to keep their business running, Tsukioka, Kokbayashi and their friend/co-worker Hidemi (Setsuko Wakayama) at the fish plant move to the northern part of Japan. The monsters (strangely) follow them there and have yet another battle. Tsukioka and the Air Defense to the rescue! In the snowy mountains, Godzilla is taken down when the forces drop bombs causing an avalanche to bury him under tons of snow. How long will it be before Godzilla comes back? You'll have to check out the next installment of the Godzilla series.
Godzilla Raids Again is an entertaining film but is basically a retread of the first film only with different characters. The previous movie was said to be a metaphor for the horrors of Hiroshima and this one could be compared to the devastation of Nagasaki. For Kaiju enthusiasts, its still a must see/own for your Godzilla collection.
AMERICAN & JAPANESE VERSIONS
The American version of Godzilla Raids Again, released in theaters in 1959 as Gigantis: The Fire Monster was heavily edited, using lots of strange stock footage, lengthy voiceover narration by Tsukioka, constant music (taken from several other sci fi films like Kronos and The Deer Slayer) and of course, the dubbed voices of notable Asian actors such as Keye Luke (Master Po on Kung Fu) and George Takei (Sulu on Star Trek). The comedic tone of the US version is heightened from the more downbeat, serious Japanese original which has none of the extra stock footage, voiceovers or constant score. The Japanese version is also a bit longer in running time.
Peter Roberts is the co-founder/editor-in-chief of the Grindhouse Cinema Database (GCDb) and contributor to the GCDb's sister site Furious Cinema. A Massachusetts native, he is an avid film fan that has been immersed in the world of entertainment and pop culture his entire life. He is currently majoring in Communications and Interactive Media Design.