Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby Grievous » Thu Nov 29, 2018 5:11 pm

eabaker wrote:
Grievous wrote:Ugh...

Whip it?


Too Much Paranoias, I song I'd rank several spots above Whip It in Devo's oeuvre.

Oh No...I was just trying to make a Devo reference...

And I'm a "Working in a Coal Mine" & "Girl U Want" guy myself.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby eabaker » Thu Nov 29, 2018 5:28 pm

Grievous wrote:
eabaker wrote:
Grievous wrote:Ugh...

Whip it?


Too Much Paranoias, I song I'd rank several spots above Whip It in Devo's oeuvre.

Oh No...I was just trying to make a Devo reference...

And I'm a "Working in a Coal Mine" & "Girl U Want" guy myself.


Ah, gotcha.

"Girl U Want" may very well be my favorite Devo song.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby Grievous » Thu Nov 29, 2018 5:36 pm

eabaker wrote:Ah, gotcha.

"Girl U Want" may very well be my favorite Devo song.

Noice...

We should be friends.

:thumbsup:
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Thu May 09, 2019 3:26 am

I realized that I live very close to where the climax of this film takes place, where they set up the electric screens.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby Dr. Professor » Thu May 09, 2019 5:23 am

LSD Jellyfish wrote:I realized that I live very close to where the climax of this film takes place, where they set up the electric screens.

That's pretty rad.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby edgaguirus » Thu May 09, 2019 11:56 am

I've been wondering something. We see the guy at the bar drinking before he has his vision of fish head people, so what was he drinking? I don't think alcohol would produce something like that, unless he's been doing something else before his drink.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Thu May 09, 2019 2:18 pm

edgaguirus wrote:I've been wondering something. We see the guy at the bar drinking before he has his vision of fish head people, so what was he drinking? I don't think alcohol would produce something like that, unless he's been doing something else before his drink.

I mean it’s obvious he was doing LSD, or something else. They’re just not going to show it given Japanese stances on drugs, and also the fact that it’s still a kids movie.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby UltramanGoji » Fri May 24, 2019 7:06 am

This is a movie that’s always been lauded for its surrealism but to be quite honest, I think the surreal aspects of the film do more harm than good.

A lot of the trippy scenes such as the Sesame Street-style animations and the fish head scene are basically non-sequiturs and have little actual relevance to the overall story. They would probably fit much better if the rest of the film was as abstract as they were. But it isn’t. For the most part, it’s a pretty standard Godzilla movie. So the surreal scenes just kind of...exist and take up the movie’s time.

None of the characters are particularly noteworthy either. Most of them just talk exposition the whole time and tha material they’re given to work with isn’t very good.

Godzilla is also weird in this movie. I think this might be one of Nakajima’s worst performances. Godzilla’s motions are so off in this one. He moves far slower than normal and I’m not a big fan of the random hand motions and superhero-like poses he does all the time. It doesn’t feel right.

What the movie does right is Hedorah. Hedorah is a fantastic creation and I love Ken Satsuma’s portrayal. Coupled with the otherworldly look, Satsuma gives Hedorah this really eerie style unlike any other in the series. I like seeing the different forms of Hedorah, it makes him more dynamic.

To be honest, this is one of my least favorites of the entire Showa era. It introduces a great new enemy monster but it’s hamfisted environmental message, disjointed editing, and over-the-top surreal style just bring it down for me.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby Ben Shapiro » Fri May 24, 2019 7:35 am

Shoutout to when Godzilla drops the Ultraman pose tho
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby JAGzilla » Fri May 24, 2019 11:06 am

Yeah, I'll agree that some of the hand morions are pretty strange. Showa Godzilla does a lot of arm flailing and goofy posing in other films, though, so it wasn't too out place.

And yes, Hedorah is one the best-executed kaiju in the franchise. Whatever other issues this bizarre movie may or may not have, I know milage varies a lot there, heck if The Smog Monster doesn't play his part perfectly.

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Sat May 25, 2019 2:22 am

UltramanGoji wrote:A lot of the trippy scenes such as the Sesame Street-style animations and the fish head scene are basically non-sequiturs and have little actual relevance to the overall story. They would probably fit much better if the rest of the film was as abstract as they were. But it isn’t. For the most part, it’s a pretty standard Godzilla movie. So the surreal scenes just kind of...exist and take up the movie’s time.


This is where you lost me. What do you mean the fish head sequence is a non sequitir? It’s very obvious and important symbolism that humans will soon become the fish, that have been destroyed by pollution in the ocean if this trend of pollution keeps going. The scenes prior to this were all about the ocean and fish quickly dying off. It also serves a period piece, showing the music scene during the time period, and ties into a cautionary/tragic tale about youth who clearly care about the environment but are powerless due to rampant drug use and apathetic adults. While not a focus in the film, the almost suicidal and nihilistic behavior portrayed by the uncle heavily parallels a lot of the sentiments of Americans at the time protesting the Vietnam war.

The animations and quick cuts aren’t just random, they also serve a function to quickly convey the overall tone and creepiness of what’s occurring. They add to the drug fueled dynamic of the 60’s and also make the audience uncomfortable. It doesn’t matter if some of them aren’t diagetic.

You lampoon the film by noting these cuts are Sesame Street-esque, but completely ignore the fact that a large component of this film revolves around a child. It’s intentional. (And also how is something being compared to Sesame Street a criticism?) Likewise the shots of the television screens, portray the growing panic, are intentded to make the audience feel stressed out and uncomfortable by what they are showing and the way they are introduced.

None of the characters are particularly noteworthy either. Most of them just talk exposition the whole time and tha material they’re given to work with isn’t very good.

???

Ken may be a child, but clearly he’s characterized in the film well and compelling as the film can be viewed as a young child coming to grips with the idea of issues larger then himself, and dealing with things such as environmental accidents. Likewise, his uncle portrays a generation that is rapidly dying out on enthusiasm and drugs, and despite all this is determined to remain happy, indicates by the big music jam on mt Fuji. It’s to show a clear contrast of the youth at the time, and the serious, almost apathetic adults.

It’s true that Ken’s father is slightly genetic, but he’s still a cool character by actively involving Ken in what’s going on, and taking the threat of Hedorah very seriously even from the get/go. A lot of his dialogue, like when he says,”I want the world to see(in reference to his face burning)” is a clear and very strong sentiment that shows his character.

Godzilla is also weird in this movie. I think this might be one of Nakajima’s worst performances. Godzilla’s motions are so off in this one. He moves far slower than normal and I’m not a big fan of the random hand motions and superhero-like poses he does all the time. It doesn’t feel right.


It works when you realize some of this film maybe in fact revolve around the idea that Ken might be partially fantasizing what is occurring. This is the most heroic Godzilla is ever portrayed, and some aspects of the film are clearly derived from Ken’s imagination.
To be honest, this is one of my least favorites of the entire Showa era. It introduces a great new enemy monster but it’s hamfisted environmental message, disjointed editing, and over-the-top surreal style just bring it down for me.


I have no clue why modern day audiences see an enviornmenal message and instantly equate it to bad. For the time period this film was made, Japan did suffer from an incredibly amount of over industrialization and pollution. A lot of the fears within the film were incredibly realistic and faithful to what was going on at the time. Your criticism here on Hedorah, and the film at large, is no different then calling the 1954 Godzilla film a ham-fisted attenpt to demonize nuclear testing. Sometimes things are made because they’re relevant and important.

And yes, Hedorah is an amazing monster, as it represents many real environmental threats that can occur, such as red tide, poor air quality, and acid rain, in addition to poor waste management and an over abundance of trash.

Many of the seemingly random elements of Godzilla vs Hedorah are very much not random and are certainly intentional.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby Zarm » Sat May 25, 2019 5:56 am

LSD Jellyfish wrote:
UltramanGoji wrote:A lot of the trippy scenes such as the Sesame Street-style animations and the fish head scene are basically non-sequiturs and have little actual relevance to the overall story. They would probably fit much better if the rest of the film was as abstract as they were. But it isn’t. For the most part, it’s a pretty standard Godzilla movie. So the surreal scenes just kind of...exist and take up the movie’s time.


This is where you lost me. What do you mean the fish head sequence is a non sequitir? It’s very obvious and important symbolism that humans will soon become the fish, that have been destroyed by pollution in the ocean if this trend of pollution keeps going.


Unless you intended this as a joke which I am missing, I'm going to have to take major issue with your use of the phrase 'very obvious.' As in, 'I have never heard another person in the world ever suggest that, and I would not agree with it myself.'

If anything, I would say it's related to his state of intoxication and the body-paint/costume of his girlfriend- but I don't think I would read any deeper symbolism into it.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby Terasawa » Sat May 25, 2019 6:16 am

I agree that that symbolism isn't obvious but I could see how it's intentional. And even if it wasn't, symbolism in art doesn't need to be intentional for it to exist.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Sat May 25, 2019 6:39 am

I don’t see how it isn’t obvious, considering what proceeds and precedes it involves dead fish and skeletons. The film opens on the fisherman bringing the strange fish, and complaining that the catches are getting lower and lower, and the bay is dying. After that we get shown Ken playing in the rocks and looking at sea life that is dead. Kens Dad goes diving and sees dead sea life. We then see constant images of red tide. Suddenly we get the drug trip scene, and what do you know, everyone is a fish. The idea is that if they keep wasting away and partying, rather then solve the issue at hand, they’ll wind up like the fish in the sea.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby JAGzilla » Sat May 25, 2019 8:05 am

That symbolism had never occurred to me, either, but you may be on to something. It really doesn't seem like the fish heads could simply be coincidental.

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby Terasawa » Sat May 25, 2019 9:18 am

At the very least, whether it's intentional or not, it supports the film's message and for that reason I think it's a valid interpretation of that scene.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby eabaker » Sat May 25, 2019 10:17 am

Zarm wrote:
LSD Jellyfish wrote:If anything, I would say it's related to his state of intoxication and the body-paint/costume of his girlfriend- but I don't think I would read any deeper symbolism into it.


The fact that he's hallucinating at all is obviously because of his intoxication, but nothing in a story exists only for diegetic reasons. If it's in there, it's in there to mean something. Whether or not it conveys its meaning clearly (and whether or not it should convey it clearly) is up for debate, but I don't see any way that it's not intended to have symbolic significance.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby UltramanGoji » Sat May 25, 2019 1:16 pm

LSD Jellyfish wrote:This is where you lost me. What do you mean the fish head sequence is a non sequitir? It’s very obvious and important symbolism that humans will soon become the fish, that have been destroyed by pollution in the ocean if this trend of pollution keeps going. The scenes prior to this were all about the ocean and fish quickly dying off. It also serves a period piece, showing the music scene during the time period, and ties into a cautionary/tragic tale about youth who clearly care about the environment but are powerless due to rampant drug use and apathetic adults. While not a focus in the film, the almost suicidal and nihilistic behavior portrayed by the uncle heavily parallels a lot of the sentiments of Americans at the time protesting the Vietnam war.


Like others have said: this wasn't very obvious. Intentional? Maybe. But it didn't work for me. I didn't think the film effectively conveyed this viewpoint well enough with what it offered.

LSD Jellyfish wrote:The animations and quick cuts aren’t just random, they also serve a function to quickly convey the overall tone and creepiness of what’s occurring. They add to the drug fueled dynamic of the 60’s and also make the audience uncomfortable. It doesn’t matter if some of them aren’t diagetic.


The problem is that the film is in a constant conflict with itself. It wants to use this jump-cut, non diegetic style in addition to the traditional structure of a Godzilla film. For you, that might've worked but for me it just didn't. I honestly would've preferred a more straight-forward narrative or a completely stylistic one. The combination doesn't work for me in this film.

LSD Jellyfish wrote:You lampoon the film by noting these cuts are Sesame Street-esque, but completely ignore the fact that a large component of this film revolves around a child. It’s intentional. (And also how is something being compared to Sesame Street a criticism?)


You mistook my descriptor for criticism. I wasn't saying they were babyish or anything, I was comparing them to the old school Sesame Street animated interstitles. It wasn't a jab at all.

LSD Jellyfish wrote:???

Ken may be a child, but clearly he’s characterized in the film well and compelling as the film can be viewed as a young child coming to grips with the idea of issues larger then himself, and dealing with things such as environmental accidents. Likewise, his uncle portrays a generation that is rapidly dying out on enthusiasm and drugs, and despite all this is determined to remain happy, indicates by the big music jam on mt Fuji. It’s to show a clear contrast of the youth at the time, and the serious, almost apathetic adults.


I completely disagree. Ken is not characterized well and he isn't very compelling. He doesn't come across as a child afraid of what the world is becoming, he just feels like the mouthpiece of the film constantly saying "Pollution is bad and Godzilla doesn't like it."

Same for his uncle. I didn't get that contrasting feeling of the two at all.


LSD Jellyfish wrote:
It’s true that Ken’s father is slightly genetic, but he’s still a cool character by actively involving Ken in what’s going on, and taking the threat of Hedorah very seriously even from the get/go. A lot of his dialogue, like when he says,”I want the world to see(in reference to his face burning)” is a clear and very strong sentiment that shows his character.


I can agree that there's some good moments with Dr. Yano and that he is probably the one character I was interested the most throughout the film. I did actually notice his activism and general serious nature towards the threat of Hedorah and I like how he's portrayed more as a normal person with an everyday life, it makes him stand apart from other scientist characters in the franchise.

LSD Jellyfish wrote:I have no clue why modern day audiences see an enviornmenal message and instantly equate it to bad. For the time period this film was made, Japan did suffer from an incredibly amount of over industrialization and pollution. A lot of the fears within the film were incredibly realistic and faithful to what was going on at the time. Your criticism here on Hedorah, and the film at large, is no different then calling the 1954 Godzilla film a ham-fisted attenpt to demonize nuclear testing. Sometimes things are made because they’re relevant and important.


Where did I say an environmental message was bad? The problem isn't that the film features an environmental message, the problem is that the film showcases it poorly and is extremely blatant about it. There's little subtlety to the message which doesn't make for enjoyable viewing because the viewer feels like they're just being preached to.

Godzilla 54 manages to showcase it's anti-nuclear message much better and with greater effect. The only time it feels ham-fisted is possibly at the very end where Yamane worries that continued nuclear testing will bring about a new Godzilla. But besides that, the rest of the film is far greater at establishing parallels and commenting on nuclear weapons. The scene with the passengers on the train casually talking about going to bomb shelters again, the post-destruction scenes in the hospital, Godzilla's physical appearance, etc. They're all far greater at portraying a message than what is showcased in Godzilla vs. Hedorah.

It's not like there isn't anything to like in GVH or that I think it's a horrible film. It's just that the majority of what it's trying to do doesn't work for me and I don't enjoy or see it in the same way as most people do. Sorry, but that's just how it is.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby SoggyNoodles2016 » Sat May 25, 2019 2:58 pm

UltramanGoji wrote: I think this might be one of Nakajima’s worst performances. Godzilla’s motions are so off in this one. He moves far slower than normal and I’m not a big fan of the random hand motions and superhero-like poses he does all the time. It doesn’t feel right.



>Nakajima
> Bad performance

those words dont go together, mate.

Also, me personally, Nakajima works great in film. hes slow but the film shows Godzilla as out of his element with Hedorah so it makes perfect sense for him to be slower. As for the hero stuff, Gigan does the same things and it works there as well.

In general with your critiques with Hedorah, I see where you're coming from but personally disagree
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Hedorah (1971)

Postby MechaGoji Bro7503 » Sat May 25, 2019 3:23 pm

I like LSD's interpretation, I'll rewatch it with that in mind. I think UG brings up some good points, but yeah I'll disagree about Godzilla's performance.
I thought it did good with its message since we get to see the damage Hedorah is causing to the environment, opposed to being told so and so is bad. Although, the "Save the Earth" song can definitely be seen as ham-fisted.
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