Godzilla and five more kaiju I have loved

Categories: Geek Speak

gojira.jpg
This week, Denver residents have a rare opportunity to see the genesis and current pinnacle of the kaiju genre with showings of both the original 1954 Japanese classic Godzilla (at the Sie FilmCenter) and the brand-new iteration (screening pretty much everywhere else movie tickets are sold). The original is better than you'd think, given its legacy of rubber-suited dudes laying waste to HO scale cities, and the new one not only is getting a fair number of positive reviews, it also stars current Best Living Actor Bryan Cranston. More important, both feature giant monsters doing what giant monsters do best: laying waste to giant swathes of civilization.

See also: Zombies are so yesterday: Six candidates for America's next top monster

Once you've seen the original classic and the latest, greatest model, I have no doubt you'll come to love kaiju (Japanese term for "strange creature") movies as much as I do (okay, maybe not quite as much, unless you also spent your childhood watching shitty dubs of Gamera and Mothra movies on late-night TV) and if that happens, you're going to need a few pointers on where to look for your next kaiju fix. To help guide you on your magical journey of kaiju love, I offer a few of my favorites as humble suggestions. (Note to kaiju purists: I take a pretty lose definition of what qualifies as a kaiju film: if it has a giant monster, it's good enough for me. Feel free to tell me what a moron I am for this in the comments section.)


Cloverfield
Not all aliens are little green/gray men. Sometimes they're giant, city-crushing beasts, like in Cloverfield. This one's also a found-footage film, which can be a turn-off for some, but on the plus side, it serves up one-time Denver resident TJ Miller in one of the lead roles, plus one of the biggest, baddest most terrifying kaiju this side of the international date line.


Shark Attack 3: Megalodon
Can a killer shark movie also be a kaiju film? It can be when the shark is the size of a city bus. This one is for the so-bad-it's-good crowd, because this movie is seriously fucking awful. It's also seriously awesome at the same time, thanks to the generous use of terrible CGI and a loopy, nonsensical plot. Plus, both John Barrowman (Torchwood) and Ryan Cutrona (Grandpa Gene on Mad Men) are in it, which makes it one of the best casts you'll ever see in a direct-to-DVD movie about a plus-sized shark.

Location Info

Map

Sie FilmCenter

2510 E. Colfax Ave., Denver, CO

Category: Film


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9 comments
Bernie Shwayder
Bernie Shwayder

Years and years ago, but I liked one called "The Mysterians." Monster mountain-sized robots.

Mark Bromley
Mark Bromley

Note the super volcano. I think it's a godzilla monster waiting to be freed and munch down on denver when it gets free. Then you'll want Godzilla here in Denver. I suspect it might be some three headed monster called King Ghidhamster that will be awakened by Cartman in the near future. Sweet a new South Park.

Jayson Degroot
Jayson Degroot

Gawrrirra been getting too fat eating Amerwican fwies an sodas! He can't make it over hills.

tzadik42
tzadik42

Today I'm hoping to watch Monsters - the first feature from Gareth Edwards who directed the new Godzilla.  Does that count?  Also, glad Gamera at least got a mention in your opening paragraph!


Also - no love for Pacific Rim?

cory.casciato
cory.casciato

@tzadik42  I did like Pacific Rim quite a bit, but it's so new I decided to mention a few other things that tickled my kaiju fancy.


Also, I love Gamera.

tzadik42
tzadik42

@cory.casciato Gamera is really neat. :)


Also - I just watched Destroy All Monsters the other day.  That was SO much fun!  Thanks for the heads-up!

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