How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Terasawa » Wed Mar 27, 2019 9:28 pm

LSD Jellyfish wrote:Okay, I don’t disagree with that. However, I’m saying that I don’t think the specific element of a dinosaur in Lost World somehow led to Godzilla. It could’ve been any monster or anything.


I sorta agree and disagree. As you said here and in the Godzilla talkback thread, not much is made of Godzilla's prehistoric origins in that film, definitely not as much as the fact that he's radioactive. That's what's really important. And I hadn't really considered that until reading that post so I look forward to evaluating that myself the next time I watch it.

But that said, I do think the concept of a rampaging dinosaur from The Lost World laid some groundwork for Godzilla: I think we can argue that the reason Godzilla is a dinosaur is because giant rampaging dinosaurs were already familiar to film audiences, from The Lost World to (a certain degree) King Kong and definitely to the recent The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms. I think the recency of Beast, the only previous cinematic radioactive dinosaur, is really important. One of the early ideas for Godzilla was a giant octopus, an animal that would have been even more familiar to audiences (especially in Japan) than a vaguely Tyrannosaurian dinosaur, but I wonder if Toho and Honda and Tsuburaya settled on a giant dinosaur because they knew it had worked before for Hollywood. And if Godzilla had been made a year or two later, after Disney's 20,000 Leagues and It Came from Beneath the Sea, might we have seen the character as a giant octopus?

One other thing to consider is this: yes, it could have theoretically been any animal, real or not, as long as it was radioactive. A dinosaur gave the filmmakers a readymade excuse for why the creature was so big. No dinosaur was ever 50 meters tall but "really large dinosaur" might in some way be more credible than "really really large octopus." But I think that's less important since most seafaring cultures have legends of enormous squids/octopi, and as said, the creature's physical shape and size is of secondary importance.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby UltramanGoji » Wed Mar 27, 2019 9:43 pm

I think the dinosaur decision was reached because of the suitmation limitation. An octopus would be feasible in stop motion but that would've taken years to make with the budget they had.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby szmigiel » Thu Mar 28, 2019 5:24 am

I think Ivo-goji is putting to much significance on "The Lost World" and not on Willis O'Brien. Willis O'Brien was going to keep trying to bring Dinosaurs to life on the screen, and it is his work over all that inspired so many others including Eiji Tsuburaya and Ray Harryhausen.

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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Godzillian » Thu Mar 28, 2019 5:46 am

szmigiel wrote:I think Ivo-goji is putting to much significance on "The Lost World" and not on Willis O'Brien. Willis O'Brien was going to keep trying to bring Dinosaurs to life on the screen, and it is his work over all that inspired so many others including Eiji Tsuburaya and Ray Harryhausen.

I've never heard Tsuburaya specifically pointing to O'Brien as an inspiration but probably safe to assume since he praised Kong and said that was what inspired him
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Thu Mar 28, 2019 2:07 pm

So I rewatched Godzilla Raids Again and it’s really bizarre. Angurius is referred to and is interchangeable with an Ankolysaurus. The dialogue is something like,”That’s Ankolysaurus, also known as Angurius”. It’s a strange one line detail that is never really brought up again.

54 actually references that Godzilla predates the dinosaurs, and is an amphibious hybrid that existed and was born in the age before water life became separate feom sea life.

So Angurius is a dinosaur, and Godzilla isn’t?
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Billzilla1974 » Thu Mar 28, 2019 8:15 pm

LSD Jellyfish wrote:
54 actually references that Godzilla predates the dinosaurs, and is an amphibious hybrid that existed and was born in the age before water life became separate feom sea life.

So Angurius is a dinosaur, and Godzilla isn’t?

The scene where Dr. Yamane reveals the existence of Godzilla in the 1954 film doesn't imply that Godzilla is older than the Jurassic. In fact, if I remember correctly, Yamane states a hybrid species of land and sea reptiles to have evolved in the Jurassic, and may have evolved into Godzilla's species in the Cretaceous.

I believe most Godzilla incarnations prior to G14 are mutated Theropod/sea reptile hybrids, I've always liked the idea of Godzilla being a "super theropod" of sorts.

The Trilobite might be potential evidence for Godzilla being older than the dinosaurs, but keep in mind that in the Showa universe where dinosaurs survived into modern times, trilobites may have also lived far past their own real life extinction in that universe.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby LegendZilla » Thu Mar 28, 2019 10:42 pm

I personally am waiting for the day a Godzilla film flat-out states that he’s a synapsid.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Living Corpse » Thu Mar 28, 2019 11:57 pm

I know Steven Spielberg said Gojira was the best dinosaur movie made (before he made Jurassic Park).
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Ivo-goji » Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:41 am

szmigiel wrote:I think Ivo-goji is putting to much significance on "The Lost World" and not on Willis O'Brien.

I mean I flat out mentioned Willis O'Brien by name.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Gerdzerl » Fri Mar 29, 2019 11:07 am

LegendZilla wrote:I personally am waiting for the day a Godzilla film flat-out states that he’s a synapsid.


As am I, it makes much more sense for him to be one of those than a theropod dinosaur.

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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby szmigiel » Fri Mar 29, 2019 11:17 am

Ivo-goji wrote:I mean I flat out mentioned Willis O'Brien by name.

Yes but you kept holding up "The Lost World" as the lynchpin film, that without it the Dinosaur genre and the later Kaiju genre wouldn't exist. Willis O'Brien did stop motion dinosaurs before "The Lost World" and kept trying after. I sure wish "Creation" made it to the big screen.

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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Billzilla1974 » Fri Mar 29, 2019 2:04 pm

Gerdzerl wrote:
LegendZilla wrote:I personally am waiting for the day a Godzilla film flat-out states that he’s a synapsid.


As am I, it makes much more sense for him to be one of those than a theropod dinosaur.

I hope that day will never come, it makes more sense for Godzilla to be a theropod, in the context of the first film & any that follow its footsteps. Yamane never stated which type of reptile he was, but a theropod is the most likely, since Theropod dinosaurs were usually the dominant land predators by the Jurassic & Cretaceous, not Synapsids.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby _JNavs_ » Fri Mar 29, 2019 2:16 pm

Godzilla really doesn't resemble Theropods in stature or nature. He definitely has many mammalian traits similar to synapsids though.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Billzilla1974 » Fri Mar 29, 2019 2:45 pm

_JNavs_ wrote:Godzilla really doesn't resemble Theropods in stature or nature. He definitely has many mammalian traits similar to synapsids though.

Godzilla's stature was based on that of the old tail dragging stature. Godzilla's species also had over 65 million years of living in the deep ocean to evolve into a more distinct form than the average theropod. I highly doubt a creature that lived in an entire different environment then the average theropod since the Jurassic and has been mutated by the H-bomb is going to look like what it's land living ancestors looked like.
The seemingly mammalian traits he may have, such as his ears, could just have easily evolved or mutated separately from those in mammals.

There are also dinosaur kaiju such as baragon, who are dinosaurs despite having some mammal-like traits, such as external ears & unusual skull shapes.
Last edited by Billzilla1974 on Fri Mar 29, 2019 3:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby LegendZilla » Fri Mar 29, 2019 4:14 pm

Billzilla1974 wrote:
Gerdzerl wrote:
LegendZilla wrote:I personally am waiting for the day a Godzilla film flat-out states that he’s a synapsid.


As am I, it makes much more sense for him to be one of those than a theropod dinosaur.

I hope that day will never come, it makes more sense for Godzilla to be a theropod, in the context of the first film & any that follow its footsteps. Yamane never stated which type of reptile he was, but a theropod is the most likely, since Theropod dinosaurs were usually the dominant land predators by the Jurassic & Cretaceous, not Synapsids.


Synapsids were considered reptiles back in the day.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby _JNavs_ » Fri Mar 29, 2019 4:21 pm

Billzilla1974 wrote:
_JNavs_ wrote:Godzilla really doesn't resemble Theropods in stature or nature. He definitely has many mammalian traits similar to synapsids though.

Godzilla's stature was based on that of the old tail dragging stature. Godzilla's species also had over 65 million years of living in the deep ocean to evolve into a more distinct form than the average theropod. I highly doubt a creature that lived in an entire different environment then the average theropod since the Jurassic and has been mutated by the H-bomb is going to look like what it's land living ancestors looked like.
The seemingly mammalian traits he may have, such as his ears, could just have easily evolved or mutated separately from those in mammals.

There are also dinosaur kaiju such as baragon, who are dinosaurs despite having some mammal-like traits, such as external ears & unusual skull shapes.

Baragon isn't a dinosaur though. Anguirus would've been a better example of a straight up dinosaur. Theropods also never lived in the deep ocean, if you're going with the underwater reptile evolution idea then maybe him being a Mosasaur of some sort would make more sense.

But Baragon and Godzilla show more signs of being synapsids than anything else
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Terasawa » Fri Mar 29, 2019 5:00 pm

I know the Heisei origin doesn't apply to all other versions of the character but at least in that case Godzilla is very much a theropod dinosaur, even if the posture and other physical attributes don't mesh with real-world science. Godzilla was created by people who didn't necessarily have an understanding of dinosaurs beyond the then-popular conception of them as big sluggish reptiles.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby _JNavs_ » Fri Mar 29, 2019 6:50 pm

The Heisei era is pretty funny, it has the most mammalian Godzilla yet also defines Godzilla as a very clear theropod
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby Billzilla1974 » Fri Mar 29, 2019 7:32 pm

_JNavs_ wrote:Baragon isn't a dinosaur though. Anguirus would've been a better example of a straight up dinosaur. Theropods also never lived in the deep ocean, if you're going with the underwater reptile evolution idea then maybe him being a Mosasaur of some sort would make more sense.

But Baragon and Godzilla show more signs of being synapsids than anything else

Baragon sure is a dinosaur according to Toho, they even imply he is one during a scene in Frankenstein vs Baragon.

I'm fully aware that theropods never lived in the open ocean IRL, but that's why I believe it's plausible that a if a theropod did become the lions share of a hybrid's dna, it would still have some traits comparable to a theropod, which Godzilla indeed has, just not fully resembling one as closely as a kaiju like Gorosaurus does. Godzilla has plenty of traits that point to theropod ancestry, Godzilla looks different from both IRl dinos & Gorosaurus due to having 65 million+ years of evolution to adapt to living parts of the ocean that would obviously crush a normal animal.

Not to mention that if the Heisei Godzilla can mutate enough to gain mammal-like traits despite still originally being a dinosaur, I don't see why the others prior to G14 (except GMK Goji) couldn't have gone through the same mutation and still be theropod/sea reptile hybrids.

Baragon is still a dinosaur, just one that adapted to living underground, just as Godzilla's species probably came from theropod dinosaurs interbreeding with sea reptiles, which then became adapted for life deep underwater.
I don't think Godzilla was ever, or should ever be a synapsid.
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Re: How connected is Godzilla to the dinosaur movie genre nowadays?

Postby UltramanGoji » Fri Mar 29, 2019 9:05 pm

Billzilla1974 wrote:Baragon sure is a dinosaur according to Toho, they even imply he is one during a scene in Frankenstein vs Baragon.


Nope.

In the Showa series, Baragon is the descendant of a Mesozoic reptile called Baranosdragon (バラナスドラゴン Baranasudoragon) that survived into the modern day living underground.

- Encyclopedia of Godzilla (New Mothra Edition). Gakken. p. 110. 10 December 1992.
Everything About Godzilla Movies. Gakken. p. 144. 1 November 1993.


https://wikizilla.org/wiki/Baragon#Origins
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