Friday, January 27, 2012

VHS Memories XV: Godzilla vs. The Shack

I love the first cycle of Godzilla movies (1954-1975), they appeal to the basic joy to be found in seeing guys in rubber suits smashing sets.  I remember watching them on weekend afternoons when I was a kid.  Here's a selection of some of the VHS covers we've seen throughout the years.

Most of the films have been released on budget labels such as Goodtimes...

And Simitar who also put a few out on DVD with really bad prints.  Though this is probably the best film in terms of actual quality, it is not my favorite.  That will come later.

Godzilla's second outing has him facing off against a giant burrowing Ankylosaurus-looking monster that breathes fire.  Sadly, not as cool as it sounds.

This, however, is one of my favorites.  It's maybe the silliest, cheesiest thing in the world with a really bad suit for Kong and one of the best monster fights of all time at the end.  I saw this when I was a kid and it's still a fun ride.

Two of Toho's best collide in this excellent monster mash that is the last time we will see Godzilla as the bad guy for a while.

I dig this one quite a bit as it has the Big G teaming u with Mothra and Rodan to kick a three headed monster controlled by aliens the hell off their planet.  Some good action and a few other nice moments highlight this one.
Ghidrah is back for another butt whooping at the hands of Godzilla as once again, aliens try to invade using a giant monster.

MST3K covered this one, another team-up between Godzilla and Mothra as they take on a gigantic shrimp/crab.  This was initially intended to be another Toho King Kong outing but for some reason, Godzilla was shoehorned into things.  The final fight has maybe the most amusing moment of the series as Godzilla rips one of the monster's arms off and taunts him with it.

Here's where things begin to go a bit haywire as Minilla, Godzilla's son is introduced.  To be fair, I have not seen this one but I've heard it's okay.

Speaking of things I have yet to see, here is the crown jewel of the series, a huge monster mash as Godzilla and a bunch of others take on Ghidrah...Again.  Man, does this guy ever get tired of getting beaten to a pulp?

One of the lesser entries in the series, this is a little too slow-paced for me.
Now this is more like it (wish I could have found a decent VHS cover but the poster is just fine) as Godzilla squares off against an evil muck-monster in this eco-friendly, impressively gruesome, psychedelic smash-em-up.  This has crap in it that no kid's film would ever get away with today.

 More strangeness as another alien invasion yields another giant monster for Godzilla to curb stomp.

Our second film that has been graced with the MST3K treatment, this is a wild combo of spy movie and monster film as Godzilla goes up against a giant beetle monster plus the baddie from the previous film while teaming up with Ultra-Man rip-off Jet Jaguar.  It's silly,. it's stupid and it's also endlessly entertaining.  Bonus points for that frigging box art.

Ah, here's my favorite!  Godzilla staves off yet another alien invasion, this time from alien apes who have a robot version of Godzilla.  And yes, it is as awesome as it sounds.

The first cycle comes to an end with this oddly melancholy entry that still delivers some good monster action.  Mechagodzilla is back, as is a new beast called Titanosaurus and it's a very good sendoff for the series.

I don't want to get too into the more recent movies since I haven't seen too many of them and honestly don't have much to say.  Still, there are two post-70's entries I do feel a pressing need to roast...Uh, I mean discuss.

 I remember being stoked for this when it came out and when I finally saw it...Well, stoked is not the word I would choose.  I think bored would be closer to the mark.  Notable for bringing Raymond Burr back and being a truly obnoxious advertisement for Dr. Pepper.

I prefer to think of this pile of dung as "The Iguana who Ate New York".  It fits a little better.

That's all for now.


  1. Awesome movies, man! My kids have been getting in to watching these with me.

    Of the newer ones, we've seen Godzilla: 2000 (which nicely erases the stench of the American Godzilla from your psyche), Godzilla vs. Spacezilla, and Godzilla vs. Destroyah. All are very nicely done, with lots of monster mayhem and still cheesy effects.

    I actually count Godzilla vs. Destroyah as the end of the first "era" of Godzilla movies. I don't want to give away spoilers. If you watch it, you will see why.

    Excellent blog. I enjoy it! I used to read your recaps over at the Agony Booth. But ever since it changed to try to be like youtube or something with nothing but videos, I completely lost interest. Keep up the good work!

    1. Thanks. I still write for The Booth on occasion.


About Me

I've been a huge fan of action, horror and comedy for as long as I can remember.