Welcome to another edition of KAIJU KONNECTION. In this entry I will be discussing the 1957 movie THE MYSTERIANS (CHIKYU BOEIGUN in Japanese, translated to Earth Defense Force), that came out a year after RODAN on December 28, 1957. This was the first Toho movie to utilize the new widescreen format known as TohoScope. For this film, director Ishiro Honda wanted to take a break from giant monsters and just do a science fiction film. The studio insisted that a kaiju be included though because of the popularity of both GODZILLA (1954) and RODAN (1956).
I grew up on Godzilla and Gamera movies. I just could not get enough of them and would scour the weekly TV Guide, trying to find any listings for these movies to be shown the following week. This was prior to VCR’s, so if I wanted to see the movie, I would have to be available at the time of broadcast or be made to wait until the next time it was put into rotation. Ahhh…the growing pains of being a child in the 1970’s.
One of my favorites of the Toho movies is the 1956 film RODAN, or Sora no Daikaijū Radon as it was known by its original Japanese title. This film was released in Japan on December 26, 1956 and then later in the United States on August 6, 1957. Personally I prefer the Japanese versions over the United States’ dubs but thankfully, in the case of RODAN, care was taken to maintain its serious tone and some of the editing actually helped the pacing of the film.Continue reading “KAIJU KONNECTION: Rodan (1956)”