Godzilla (1954)

imageI’ve recently watched the original Japanese science fiction kaiju film “Godzilla” (ゴジラ Gojira) which was originally released 3 November 1954. Produced by Toho and Directed by Ishirō Honda with special effects by Eiji Tsuburaya, The film stars Akira Takarada, Momoko Kōchi, Akihiko Hirata, Takashi Shimura and Haruo Nakajima who portrayed the titular character until his retirement in 1972.

The film focuses on Godzilla, a prehistoric monster resurrected by repeated nuclear tests in the Pacific, who ravages Japan and reignites horrors of nuclear devastation to the very nation that experienced it first-hand. It stars after a Japanese fishing boat is mysteriously destroyed near Odo Island, another ship is sent to investigate but also sinks. Reporters arrive on Odo Island to further investigate. A village elder tells one of the reporters that he believes the disasters are being caused by an ancient sea creature known as “Godzilla”. That same night, an unseen force comes ashore during a storm and attacks the village.

Paleontologist Kyohei Yamane leads an investigation crew to the island, where giant radioactive footprints and a trilobite are discovered. Soon Dr. Yamane and the villagers encounter Godzilla up a hill and he goes to Tokyo to warn them that Godzilla has been resurrected by repeated nuclear tests. So ships are sent to deal with him, However, Godzilla appears to have survived and causes nationwide panic. Officials appeal to Dr. Yamane for ideas to kill the monster, but Yamane wants him kept alive and studied. Meanwhile Dr. Yamane’s daughter, Emiko, is given a demonstration by Dr Yamane’s work colleague Dr. Serizawa of his recent project which horrifies her. That night Godzilla surfaces from Tokyo Bay and attacks the city. So a line of tall electrical towers is constructed along the coast of Tokyo. However Godzilla resurfaces and breaks through the electrical fences, proceeding with his rampage across Tokyo.

Distraught by the devastation, Emiko asks Hideto Ogata, a salvage ship captain, for help and informs him of Dr Serizawa’s unethical project. So Emiko and Ogata go to Dr. Serizawa to convince him to use it but he initially refuses. However After watching a program displaying the nation’s current tragedy, Dr. Serizawa finally gives in to Emiko and Ogata’s pleas and A navy ship takes Ogata and Dr. Serizawa to deal with Godzilla. Meanwhile Dr. Yamane warns that if more nuclear tests are conducted they will have continuing trouble with monsters.

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