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Ghidora, The Three-Headed Monster


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This was the first movie, as far as I can recall, that I went to because I wanted to -- as opposed to just being ferried there by some adult to get me and my peers out of their hair.  (At that time, in America, it was called "Ghidra" instead of "Ghidora":  I'm sure there was a reason.)  It was on a double-bill with Elvis's Harum Scarum (my first Elvis movie!), which as far as I can recall my eight-year-old self found puzzling (among other things, how did he get that pompadour to stay up like that?).

This was the first Mothra movie I saw, and I was very taken with the Tiny Fairy Princesses (indelibly played, as I now know, by The Peanuts).  But you know what, it wasn't -- because I have this recollection of being disappointed that Mothra only appears as a caterpillar rather than a moth, so I must have seen OG Mothra or Mothra vs. Godzilla to know that.  I'm pretty sure it was my first encounter with Rodan, though.  I still think Rodan is vaguely silly.

Does it hold up?  In this context, it's hard to know what "hold up" means.  It's not an Indelible Work Of World Cinema like OG Gojira was.  But I certainly enjoyed it more than my recent viewing of You Only Live Twice.  Kurosawa associate and bestie Ishirō Honda was some kind of genius, no doubt about that.

 

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I remember that, when I first saw this, I was very excited by how it integrated spy-movie tropes into a monster-movie context.  This seemed less apparent to me this time out.  But I'm probably just less observant than I was at age 8.

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