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Japan, 1954
Directed by Ishirō Honda
With Akira Takarada, Momoko Kōchi, Akihiko Hirata, Takashi Shimura
Approx. 96 min. DCP restoration.

On a sunny day and a calm sea, a Japanese steamer sinks in flames when the sea erupts; a salvage vessel sent to the rescue disappears the same way; exhausted, incoherent survivors babble of a monster — as does an island patriarch; after a typhoon hits the island and villagers disappear, scientists find a giant radioactive footprint! Could it be...? GOJIRA (the original title, an amalgam of gorilla and kujira – Japanese for whale) was the biggest budgeted film in Japanese history to that time, costing nearly twice as much as the same studio's THE SEVEN SAMURAI, released in the same year. An enormous hit, it spawned 50 years of sequels, countless rip-offs, and a new genre: the kaiju eiga, or Japanese monster movie.


“The sheer fervency of this film takes it beyond the crash-bang entertainment of most blockbusters, ancient and modern.”
– Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

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