Speaking of culturally significant shows, Julia and I went to see Godzilla a few nights ago. I cannot claim to be an unbiased reviewer, because I have a long-standing affection for the beast and his signature GRONNNNNNGGGK-K-K! In fact, I can see a couple of Godzilla toys on the shelf from where I sit at my computer right now. But I’m highly sensitive to bad versions of Godzilla, of which the version starring Matthew Broderick was one. (It wasn’t a bad monster movie; it just wasn’t Godzilla.)
Anyway, the new one is pretty good! ‘Zilla comes to the rescue when human attempts to stop some other nasty monsters fail. Although, I have to say, we both felt that Godzilla got shorted a little on screen time in comparison to the MUTOs (the Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Objects), which were ugly, massive buglike things. Also, I have to admit that Godzilla’s motivation in the story was pretty vague. But let’s not get all scientific. Of course you can detonate a large fusion warhead just offshore and not flatten San Francisco! It’s a Godzilla movie!
I must confess to some disappointment in the Godzilla roar, though. This interesting video shows the two sound guys who produced it talk about the three-year job of getting it right. And I have to say… close, but uh-uh. The original, produced by a resin-coated leather glove being dragged down the strings of a bass, and then slowed down, was better, in my opinion.
Here you can see how ‘Zilla has evolved over the years, both in body and sound. I thought they got the sound best in the mid ’60s and ’70s.