Free Newsletters - Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear
..
. Earth Science News .




DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Godzilla: Still relevant and raging after 60 years in Japan
by Staff Writers
Tokyo (AFP) June 18, 2014


While a digitalised Hollywood reboot stomps its way to box office success around the world, the original Godzilla -- a man in a rubber suit -- has hit screens in Japan again, as relevant as ever.

The 1954 classic, which spawned more than two dozen follow-ups, has been cleaned up for a two-week run in Tokyo to mark the 60th anniversary of the monster from the deep.

Despite the shaky sets and the all-too-obvious latex costumes, a new generation of movie-goers declared themselves impressed.

"I was really surprised to see a Tokyo that isn't the current, neat Tokyo, but was just some 10 years after war, trampled again," said Kenichi Takagi, 44, who took along his 10-year-old son.

Visuals and audio have been given a scrub to remove some of the speckles and pops that cinema-goers are now unused to experiencing, although there is no hiding the fact that the creature is really a heavily-sweating actor in a suit.

But the movie's enduring popularity six decades on is testament to the continuing resonance of its themes of human helplessness in the face of forces that cannot be controlled.

- Hydrogen bomb test -

Film studio Toho released "Gojira" -- a Japanese portmanteau of "gorilla" and "kujira" (whale) -- directed by Ishiro Honda, in November 1954, a few months after Akira Kurosawa's classic "Seven Samurai".

The monster movie was a mega-hit, drawing 9.6 million viewers in the days before television sets were commonplace in Japanese households.

In the fictional world, the creature was awakened by a hydrogen bomb test, rising out of a roiling sea and swimming to Japan where it crushes Tokyo, a walking, radiation-breathing analogy for nuclear disaster.

The reference was clear: that same year the United States had carried out its hydrogen bomb test at Bikini Atoll in the South Pacific, exposing a Japanese fishing boat to nuclear fallout, sickening the 23 crew and eventually killing the captain.

It was also less than a decade after Japan surrendered in World War II following the US atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945.

But while the creature stands emblematic of the way that humans have courted death by their tinkering, it is also the product of a country prone to natural disasters.

"We grow up thinking since our childhood that there are typhoons, earthquakes and other things that humans cannot control. It's the same with Gojira," said artist Yuji Kaida on the sidelines of a Tokyo exhibition of his paintings on Godzilla.

The point of the monster -- and perhaps the reason why there are so many sequels -- is that it can never really be defeated. Like other destructive forces of nature, people just have to watch it come and go, hoping to survive.

Sadamitsu Noji, 34, said he had been a fan of the creation for two decades, and sees it as a blank canvas onto which cinema-goers can project.

"Besides its underlying anger, Godzilla embraces various feelings... Each viewer can see his own emotions in Godzilla," he told AFP.

- Impossible to ignore -

Actor Akira Takarada, who starred in the original film, said he had seen the new version twice, and agreed that Godzilla is a complex creation, worthy of its place in history.

"I realised anew that Godzilla isn't simply a destroyer but that he himself is a victim of an atomic bomb... I cannot help feeling sympathy for him," the 80-year-old told reporters.

That status of victim resonates even louder in contemporary Japan, where tens of thousands of people remain displaced by the tsunami-sparked disaster at Fukushima in 2011.

Warner Bros' $160 million incarnation sees the "King of Monsters" pitted against two giant and long-dormant creatures that feed off radioactivity, as "Breaking Bad" star Bryan Cranston battles on behalf of humanity.

Director Gareth Edwards said Fukushima had been impossible to ignore.

"There is a strong tradition in science fiction where it's not really about the future but it's often about the present, the time in which the films are made," he said.

"We didn't want to literally make a film about the events that happened in Japan but it's nearly impossible to make Godzilla, which is a symbol of a cautionary tale about using nuclear power, set in Japan, and not raise the question."

.


Related Links
Bringing Order To A World Of Disasters
A world of storm and tempest
When the Earth Quakes






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Ten migrants die in shipwreck off Libya: Italian navy
Rome (AFP) June 14, 2014
Italian sailors have recovered 10 bodies of migrants after a rubber dinghy sank off the Libyan coast, Italy's navy said Saturday. Thirty-nine migrants were rescued after the vessel sank Friday some 40 nautical miles from the Libyan coast, the navy said, adding that the search for survivors continued on Saturday. The boat was thought to have been carrying around 90 people. A frigate a ... read more


DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Godzilla: Still relevant and raging after 60 years in Japan

Japan to help Bhutan brush up 'happiness' census

Japan satellites to monitor Fukushima, Chernobyl

Fukushima struggling to build ice wall to plug leak

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
3D printer cleared for lift-off to ISS in August

SanDisk buys storage rival Fusion-io for $1.6 bn

3-D printing technology transforms dentistry, real estate and more

NASA's abandoned ISEE-3 craft to return to Earth's orbit

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
US joins bid to create vast Pacific marine reserve; Kiribati bans fishing

China blamed as fishing case postponed in Philippines

Scientists take first dip into water's mysterious 'no-man's land'

Fighting hits water supply in east Ukraine city

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Antarctic species dwindle as icebergs batter shores year-round

New permafrost is forming around shrinking Arctic lakes

Researchers find major West Antarctic glacier melting from geothermal sources

Great Lakes finally free of ice

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
India authority orders Coke plant closed

Findings may advance iron-rich, cadmium-free crops

Palmer amaranth threatens Midwest farm economy

Famine fear won't sway minds on GM crops

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Flood damage to Bosnia estimated at 2 billion euros

Changes in wind shear offers evidence for pole ward shift of hurricane intensity

Moderate quakes hit near Japan's Fukushima

Cristina strengthens to category four hurricane: NHC

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Chinese VP lauds better ties with African workers

Nearly 4,000 Eritreans flee each month: UN

Chinese VP in Zambia to boost ties with Africa's copper giant

Two years jail for Togolese ivory smuggler 'Le Patron'

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
What amino acids in shells can tell us about Bronze Age people

Brain syncs blood flow to match activities

Feel-good hormones could cause UV addiction

Chimpanzees spontaneously initiate and maintain cooperative behavior




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.