Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

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HedorahIsBestGirl
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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby HedorahIsBestGirl » Sun Feb 02, 2020 10:28 am

UltramanGoji wrote:I often see this one cited among the more hardcore fans as one of the best and while it is good, I don't think it reaches that high for me.

To each his own, I guess; as a kid, I was part of the whole stupid "this movie sucks becuz Minya" camp, but rewatching it as an adult, it's become one of my very favorites and one I go back to more often than most. I think I'd rank this as one of my top five Showa films, in terms of both quality and favoritism; the only other film I can definitively say that about is Mothra vs. Godzilla.

UltramanGoji wrote:Rodan made some good points a few pages ago about the more humanistic aspects of this film (god, I miss his posts...) but I don't think the film ever fully embraces them, I saw it more as a passing almost expository reference more than anything. But the fact that those are at least acknowledged gives it far more credit than a few others in the franchise.

I think the characters for the most part are well done, especially Furukawa and Goro Maki, but they don't really hit the same marks as other casts, especially not Jun Fukuda's last Godzilla film.

The cast is one of the main reasons I love this film. I think Goro Maki might be my favorite protagonist of the entire Showa series. The ensemble cast is strong overall and I like how they play an active role in the plot, rather than being a side attraction as in many Godzilla films. Personally, I think the cast here is more enjoyable than Ebirah; Daiyo is kinda cool but I prefer Saeko, and Yoshimura is the only character in Ebirah who really interests me. By contrast, I enjoy Goro, Saeko, the Professor, Morio and Furukawa in Son of Godzilla.

UltramanGoji wrote:I really liked the puppetry effects for Kamacuras and Kumonga. It kind of gave them this unique motion that hadn't been seen before in a Godzilla film. Minilla is perfectly fine and suits his role well.

Yeah, the special effects work in this movie is honestly excellent. Some of the finest in the Showa era.

UltramanGoji wrote:Masaru Sato's score is great, light-hearted and whimsical and it fits the tone of this movie well. I love Kamacuras' theme.

One of my absolute favorites of the series for sure. I honestly think Sato is overlooked as a composer because he's overshadowed by Ifukube, but his scores are debatably more diverse.

UltramanGoji wrote:Overall, it's a solid B+ for me, not as fantastic as it's often praised by the bigger fans but nowhere near as bad as the more casual side likes to claim.

I think some of the bigger fans go out of their way to praise this movies because it's so unfairly hated by the casual and younger fans. Everyone loves Godzilla, Mothra vs. Godzilla, Ghidorah, etc., but this movie still needs to be defended from a large element of the fandom. Anyway, Son of Godzilla gets an A from me. Among the Showa films, I rank it fifth, following Godzilla, Mothra vs. Godzilla, Terror of Mechagodzilla and Godzilla vs. Hedorah.
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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby Terasawa » Sun Feb 02, 2020 3:15 pm

I, too, think Sato is underappreciated by Godzilla fans. I love Ifukube but his style wouldn't have worked for every Godzilla movie. Sato's Godzilla scores aren't among his best work as a composer but they're still very good (except GRA).
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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby GojiDog » Sat Feb 22, 2020 11:11 pm

I love Sato's work on this film. It fits the tone and setting of the film perfectly.

Of the four Godzilla movies he scored, I think this one is his best work.

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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby HedorahIsBestGirl » Sun Feb 23, 2020 9:32 am

GojiDog wrote:I love Sato's work on this film. It fits the tone and setting of the film perfectly.

Of the four Godzilla movies he scored, I think this one is his best work.

I wholeheartedly agree. For me it's:
1) Son of Godzilla
2) Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla
3) Godzilla vs. Ebirah
4) Godzilla Raids Again
And honestly, I think the Sato score for this movie rivals almost any of the best Ifukube scores.
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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby edgaguirus » Fri Feb 28, 2020 11:35 am

Sato's work in SOG and GvSM are his best. He really captured the island vibe with his score, and Minya has a memorable theme.
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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby Kaiju-King42 » Fri Feb 28, 2020 12:56 pm

The theme that plays while the cast is setting up the weather machine experiment is my jam.



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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby eabaker » Fri Feb 28, 2020 1:02 pm

I am all about the Kamakiras theme.
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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby JAGzilla » Thu Mar 12, 2020 1:44 am

All right, just got done with essentially my first viewing of Son of Godzilla; the only other was at 3AM in 2006, and I was too exhausted to pay any attention. Anyway, this time I found it delightful. :lol: I won't lie and say I can't understand where the dislike stems from; this one clearly just isn't going to be everyone's cup of tea. If you only like your monsters serious and fearsome, and more power to you if you do, (I was in that camp once, myself) their antics here will mostly grate on your nerves. But if you're inclined to lighten up and let them be goofy and laid back, SoG is among the best. Assorted thoughts:

- I love the intro. It gets some monster action in right away to grab the viewer's attention, and is very to-the-point: there's mysterious interference, and Godzilla is drawn to the source.

- Our cast of human characters is solid. Most just kind of do their jobs and don't leave a huge impression, but they're by no means boring. Saeko and her friendship with Minya definitely stood out. I would've preferred that Goro Maki stick to his reporter angle throughout the whole movie, though. He starts out gung-ho to get his story, but that is quickly dropped and he just sort of becomes a general brave-but-slightly-bumbling adventure hero. Would've been nice if he'd continued taking pictures and recording the whole situation; by the end, he'd have had material to dominate the front page for a week! But that's a minor gripe.

- The monsters, of course, were the real stars. Minya was fantastically realized for what he was, and I hereby renounce any negativity I've ever felt toward him. He really feels like a child, playful, curious, trying to be brave though still easily frightened. The suit actor brought a ton of lively, believable personality to the role, and there were so many little moments that I loved. When he petulantly kicked the rock and slouched away after being told to stay back from the antenna (you could just hear him saying "aw, shucks"), his terrified confusion and inability to decide which way to run as Kumonga approaches him, his hesitant bravery as he protected Saeko from the last Kamacuras. Great stuff.

Speaking of, the Kamacuras played their roles of sinister (but not actually very dangerous) goons well. Not a whole lot to say about them, but I liked their introduction, with the glowing eyes appearing out of the dark jungle, and yes, I am also all about their theme song.

Kumonga. Wow. Not the grandest villain of the series, he can't really stand up there with the Big Bads that truly feel apocalyptic and capable of killing Godzilla. But here, for the role he had to play in this film? Nah, he was great. The puppetry that brought him to life was first-rate, I love his foreboding introduction as we see his legs rising out of the earth, and he just looks ugly and dangerous. A very good job was done establishing his size, as we see him glaring into the cave at Goro and Saeko, and walking past the tower later. His fear factor, too, was handled well; the real impact of him was felt when Saeko broke down and screamed. That was an important scene. Women in monster movies tend to spend a lot of their time shrieking hysterically, helplessly cringing, fainting at the sight of the monster, etc. But Saeko was never like that. She was calm, confident, utterly unfazed by the monsters, getting more done for the group than anybody... until Kumonga showed up. When she starts showing genuine terror, you know this guy is bad news. And then that was borne out through his interactions with the other monsters he drops Minya and the last Kamacuras no problem, and has Godzilla on the ropes several times throughout the battle. He really is underrated in the fandom.

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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby Living Corpse » Thu Mar 12, 2020 2:05 am

Komunga, Godzilla's OTHER equal back in the 60s.
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Re: Talkback Thread #8: Son of Godzilla (1967)

Postby Tyrant_Lizard_King » Sun Mar 15, 2020 12:26 am

Son of Godzilla is surprisingly atmospheric for what it is. As for the soundtrack, I adore it to death just like the rest of the film. Its happy, playful, and upbeat but also surprisingly dark and suspenseful when it needs to be. Sato's biggest strong suit is just how unique each of his scores are. I mean I love Ifukube but a lot of his music tends to be repetitive.
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