Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby UltramanGoji » Wed Jun 13, 2018 4:08 pm

Jeff-Goldblum1 wrote:To address the controversy about Godzilla being defeated by two caterpillars.


There is no controversy. Just idiot children and manchildren who don't understand the basic storytelling.

Grow the skreeonk up and get over it.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby MaxRebo320 » Thu Jun 14, 2018 9:23 am

I'd only accept a refilmed ending with Godzilla winning if immediately following the deaths of the Mothra larvae, Hanuman arrives to fight Godzilla, knocking him to the ground and stabbing him in the throat with his pitchfork, blood oozing, killing him. There's then a scene of Kumayama and Torahata in Hell, pleading for one last chance, only for Satan to order their heads be cut off. We then cut to a shot of their bloody decapitated heads, and the movie ends.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Goji » Thu Jun 14, 2018 12:43 pm

Damn. Jeff straight just gave this topic cancer. Way to go, guy.

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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Maritonic » Thu Jun 14, 2018 12:56 pm

Goji wrote:Damn. Jeff straight just gave this topic cancer. Way to go, guy.


He has a tendency to do that.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Jeff-Goldblum1 » Sat Jun 16, 2018 5:33 am

I'm simply asking a hypothetical question. It's not even something that would ever happen.

Some people respond with reasonable replies as to why it's not a good idea.

Some people take it as a personal insult. Never understand forum mentality like that.

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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby UltramanGoji » Sat Jun 16, 2018 9:01 am

Jeff-Goldblum1 wrote:I'm simply asking a hypothetical question. It's not even something that would ever happen.

Some people respond with reasonable replies as to why it's not a good idea.

Some people take it as a personal insult. Never understand forum mentality like that.


It's less that people take it as a personal insult and more that we're just sick and tired of hearing about why the ending is bad. In the 60+ years of this film's existence, nobody has ever given a clear and intelligent answer as to why Godzilla being defeated by the Mothra Larvae is a flaw of the film. Most of the backlash against this ending comes from younger fans who watch these films only for the special effects scenes and people who only care about the fighting prowess of the kaiju and not the narrative elements.

Godzilla is the villain in the film. The bad guy. He's the antagonist. Mothra is the heroic monster. She fights Godzilla in her dying days to save Japan from Godzilla's rampages. She loses the first bout and her offspring finish the job for her and save the day. Having Godzilla defeat both of those larvae and just simply go away on his own not only undermines the entire tension the rest of the film places on Mothra battling Godzilla, it's a lazy and downright stupid idea.

It's a David & Goliath story, only, for some reason, you want to have Goliath come out on top. Mothra is already an underdog for most of the film, what with her being near-death and all. To just undermine that whole motivation by having Godzilla win for no logical reason is incredibly selfish and dumb.

There's nothing wrong with disliking the ending. The problem comes from when people won't stop complaining about it as if it ruined Godzilla's career or something. It's an extremely annoying complaint that has never (at least from what I've seen) been supported with an intelligent reason. That's why people react so negatively.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby MechaGoji Bro7503 » Sat Jun 16, 2018 3:39 pm

MaxRebo320 wrote:I'd only accept a refilmed ending with Godzilla winning if immediately following the deaths of the Mothra larvae, Hanuman arrives to fight Godzilla, knocking him to the ground and stabbing him in the throat with his pitchfork, blood oozing, killing him. There's then a scene of Kumayama and Torahata in Hell, pleading for one last chance, only for Satan to order their heads be cut off. We then cut to a shot of their bloody decapitated heads, and the movie ends.

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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby daveblackeye15 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:03 am

Yeah I was upset about Godzilla losing to two little moths...when I was like eight. Then I became a bit older and appreciated it.

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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Pkmatrix » Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:30 am

I remain BAFFLED that anyone gets upset about Godzilla losing. I first saw this movie when I was eight and never thought, "Oh, Godzilla should have won!" Like, I can't be the only one who watches these movies FOR THE STORIES and CHARACTERS not just for explosions and destruction. Godzilla winning at the end would make NO SENSE WHATSOEVER. UltramanGoji has it 100% right.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Maritonic » Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:33 am

Pkmatrix wrote:I remain BAFFLED that anyone gets upset about Godzilla losing. I first saw this movie when I was eight and never thought, "Oh, Godzilla should have won!" Like, I can't be the only one who watches these movies FOR THE STORIES and CHARACTERS not just for explosions and destruction. Godzilla winning at the end would make NO SENSE WHATSOEVER. UltramanGoji has it 100% right.


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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Zarm » Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:38 am

Well, I watch them that way, too. However, that doesn't mean that some people won't find the ending contrived or unbelievable, even if it is thematically-accurate. I mean, I can't say that I'm 'upset,' per se- but I do find it somewhat absurd, conceptually. I've talked about this with The Last Jedi- and indeed, with a number of movies in recent years. A story can set up a climax or plot-twist that is unearned or breaks the rules it's established (heck, Doctor Who has practically been ABOUT this since its return), that can cause a break in the suspension of disbelief, even if it dovetails nicely with the anrrative's themes or is necessary for the message/moral of the story. (In fact, clumsy writing can often undercut the message or moral, if it becomes obvious that the story needs a narrative 'cheat' to actually make its theme work).

So, yeah- I always thought Godzilla should be able to beat two Mothra larvae, easily- 'realistically.' That doesn't mean I want him to, or think that would make a better movie, or don't understand the themes. I just don't feel like it's a reasonable outcome based on the nature of the creatures as we've seen them. So, I roll my eyes, scoff a little, and then get on with the movie, because I get what they're trying to do (even if I don't agree with the logistics of how they're doing it).

But I can understand how others would be a little more vexed by it; how much you're willing to let the internal consistency and established 'rules' of a fictional universe slide to suit the story, and how much it takes you out of it because they aren't 'playing fair' by their own standards, is a personal thing that has to do a lot with personality, perceptions, investment in the story, and mindset. Everyone's different.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Maritonic » Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:41 am

I mean bear in mind we're not talking about a film where the larvae out-punched him. They used strategy to confine him in webbing. It was done completely realistically.

It's also been done in other films, yet it only seems to get brought up in *this* film. The same thing happens in Tokyo SOS, the only difference being that Kiryu drags him out to the ocean. So, I can't really understand how anyone who's an adult can actually be upset about it.

It's like being upset that Batman can defeat Superman by using strategy, gadgets, and Kryptonite.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Zarm » Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:59 am

Maritonic wrote:I mean bear in mind we're not talking about a film where the larvae out-punched him. They used strategy to confine him in webbing. It was done completely realistically.

It's also been done in other films, yet it only seems to get brought up in *this* film. The same thing happens in Tokyo SOS, the only difference being that Kiryu drags him out to the ocean. So, I can't really understand how anyone who's an adult can actually be upset about it.

It's like being upset that Batman can defeat Superman by using strategy, gadgets, and Kryptonite.


Well, if we're going to get into that... that's usually contrived, too. Usually by making Batman operate at 110% of his mental and prognostication abilities... while Superman is required to hold back his powers, his speed, limit his intelligence, and walk into obvious traps. So I think there's ample reason to be annoyed at that, too. Case in point? Batman v Superman was total nonsense. It may have served the story, but it was portrayed ridiculously and contrived both to get them fighting, keep them fighting, keep Superman from ending the fight in about five different places, and then to have Batman win.

So there, too, I get people being annoyed. Again, just because your threshold for disbelief isn't set off by that doesn't mean someone else's- someone who is an adult, and understands storycraft- won't still be.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Terasawa » Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:59 am

The Mothras aren’t caterpillars. They are intelligent mythical creatures that have the appearance and lifecycle (sort of) of caterpillars.

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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Maritonic » Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:02 am

Zarm wrote:
Maritonic wrote:I mean bear in mind we're not talking about a film where the larvae out-punched him. They used strategy to confine him in webbing. It was done completely realistically.

It's also been done in other films, yet it only seems to get brought up in *this* film. The same thing happens in Tokyo SOS, the only difference being that Kiryu drags him out to the ocean. So, I can't really understand how anyone who's an adult can actually be upset about it.

It's like being upset that Batman can defeat Superman by using strategy, gadgets, and Kryptonite.


Well, if we're going to get into that... that's usually contrived, too. Usually by making Batman operate at 110% of his mental and prognostication abilities... while Superman is required to hold back his powers, his speed, limit his intelligence, and walk into obvious traps. So I think there's ample reason to be annoyed at that, too. Case in point? Batman v Superman was total nonsense. It may have served the story, but it was portrayed ridiculously and contrived both to get them fighting, keep them fighting, keep Superman from ending the fight in about five different places, and then to have Batman win.

So there, too, I get people being annoyed. Again, just because your threshold for disbelief isn't set off by that doesn't mean someone else's- someone who is an adult, and understands storycraft- won't still be.


I made a point of avoiding Batman v. Superman. Wasn't discussing it. Superman holds back his powers as to not kill Batman, and there are thousands of plot points why.

My POINT was we're talking Strategy vs. Brute Strength. If the Larvae physically beat Godzilla yes, I'd call bullshit. That fight is clearly quite a panicked fight as they're often dodging his atomic breath and tail swipes. It's a desperation attempt to wrap him in webbing.

Vocalizing an opinion and claiming it's utterly stupid and offensive to the franchise are two very different things. We're talking about the latter here.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Zarm » Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:10 am

Maritonic wrote:I made a point of avoiding Batman v. Superman. Wasn't discussing it. Superman holds back his powers as to not kill Batman, and there are thousands of plot points why.


And also multiple times that he didn't clearly articulate what was going on, or just stood there and let batman do something very slowly that was clearly another attack instead of racing up, immobilizing him, and explaining things. :)

Again, I understnad the basic concept- but my point is exactly this. it's the execution that can irritate some people, and draw them out of the story.


Maritonic wrote:My POINT was we're talking Strategy vs. Brute Strength. If the Larvae physically beat Godzilla yes, I'd call bullshit. That fight is clearly quite a panicked fight as they're often dodging his atomic breath and tail swipes. It's a desperation attempt to wrap him in webbing.


Right. And I do understand it works for you. I'll be rewatching it soon, and see how it's aged for me. But again, my point is that just because something works for you doesn't mean it will work for everyone. Just like Batman v Superman. All I'm trying to say is, it isn't unreasonable for someone to feel differently about it.


Maritonic wrote:Vocalizing an opinion and claiming it's utterly stupid and offensive to the franchise are two very different things. We're talking about the latter here.


And I understand that. But the thread is turning into condescending, borderline-insulting statements regarding how it's inexplicable that anyone who's a grown-up or watches movies for anything other than mindless fighting and explosions could possibly be bothered by the same thing that someone else had an over-the-top reaction to. And that's where I'm stepping in and saying "Hey, that's taking it a little too far, guys."

Calling it utterly stupid and offensive? That's farther than I'd take things. Having a problem with the execution, but keeping it in perspective and context? I think that's pretty reasonable, and I've been there myself.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby UltramanGoji » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:29 am

Once again, the problem isn't people disliking the ending, it's that nobody who has ever disliked it has ever put forth an intelligent argument as to why it's a bad story decision. They complain about it, but never explain why it annoys them.

I have no problem if you don't like this film or its ending, but tell me WHY you don't like it so I can understand your POV. Don't just use the dumb "Godzilla was beaten by caterpillars!" nonsense.

It's maybe not offensive in the sense of how we normally use the word, but as a student of film and somebody who's learning the process behind making movies, it frustrates me when people judge an entire movie based on one component in a larger machine. There's so many other factors to MVG that make it a fantastic film and one shouldn't place all that in jeopardy based on a fantasy match outcome.
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Godzillian » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:34 am

Literally the only way someone can complain about the ending is if they don't actually care about the plot, they only like the monsters and the fights. I've seen many young fans hate the movie cause its "boring" and the fights "aren't good"
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby eabaker » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:41 am

Terasawa wrote:The Mothras aren’t caterpillars. They are intelligent mythical creatures that have the appearance and lifecycle (sort of) of caterpillars.


I was about to raise the same point.

It's like watching The Empire Strikes Back and walking away asking, "How could someone as short as Yoda possibly be better with the Force than someone as tall as Luke Skywalker?"
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Re: Talkback Thread #4: Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964)

Postby Zarm » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:56 am

UltramanGoji wrote:Once again, the problem isn't people disliking the ending, it's that nobody who has ever disliked it has ever put forth an intelligent argument as to why it's a bad story decision. They complain about it, but never explain why it annoys them.


I don't think the argument is that it is a bad story decision, though. Only that it is an 'unbelievable' or otherwise hard-to-swallow elements used to support the story.


Godzillian wrote:Literally the only way someone can complain about the ending is if they don't actually care about the plot, they only like the monsters and the fights.


Again, this is what I'm talking about. That is simply an untrue statement. I just explained how I- and others- care about the plot, but have still found the ending to be a head-scratcher logistically.


The point is not that the ending is objectively good or bad, guys- it's that you're failing to make any account for people being bothered by different aspects of a film than plot/story. If a plot didn't have to have any coherency or internal logic, every movie would be a great movie. :) But sometimes, stories do things to serve their overall narrative that still don't make sense in the context of physics, logic, character decisions, motivations, or any number of other weak-points. Simply serving the story or the themes isn't enough to make an elements of a film ironclad, for some people (including myself)- it also has to make sense. Has to play by established rules. Has to not feel contrived.

Yeah, hating the whole movie over the ending is a definite overreaction. But making author-fic arguments or straw men about how impossible it is for anyone to have any issue with the ending whatsoever unless they satisfy an imagined criteria is also an overreaciton in the other direction. That's all I'm saying.

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eabaker wrote:It's like watching The Empire Strikes Back and walking away asking, "How could someone as short as Yoda possibly be better with the Force than someone as tall as Luke Skywalker?"


I don't think they're quite equivalent. Judge them by their size, people do not (solely). They are also infants (I mean- maybe they're born with full adult knowledge and much greater strength than the newborns of most species; we just don't have any in-film indication that that's the case, as far as I know), utilizing no apparent mystical powers, shooting only silly string, against an atomic juggernaut that has straight-up murdered a vicious, speedy melee fighter and an experienced adult (albeit infirmed) member of the same species with more powers, and can straight up melt rocks like a deflating beach-ball with his breath. :) I mean, sure- calling them caterpillars (like calling Godzilla a lizard) is a generalization-for-effect; but the fact that they are mystical beings doesn't appear to change any of the factors listed above. On paper, it is a bit absurd. :) Now, again, that doesn't mean it's not thematically appropriate, or doesn't serve the story, or can't be executed in a way (like most David vs. Goliath Mothra stories) that makes the victory plausible.

But that doesn't mean it's going to work for everybody, or that the execution used is automatically beyond reproach.
Last edited by Zarm on Tue Jun 19, 2018 11:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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