Greetings, fellow fans!
On this day in 1998, the most controversial moment in the history of Godzilla occurred when Tristar’s take on the character hit theaters across America. It certainly wasn’t what most US fans were expecting, and what even fewer were hoping for.
Much has been said about the much maligned film (nicknamed “GINO”, an acronym for “Godzilla In Name Only” by unhappy fans) in the two decades since its release, very little of it positive. But, as misguided as many aspects of it were, and as different as it was from the classic Japanese version of the character, I have to admit… I’ve never hated it.
To me, the film has always been a fun rollercoaster ride of a monster movie; an exciting, high-octane creature feature that showcased (mostly) likable characters, an engaging plot, great set pieces and action sequences, and, when taken on its own, awesome creature design.
Is it “Godzilla proper”?
Is it a flawless piece of cinema?
Is it one hell of a fun time to watch?
You bet! At least for me.
So, to celebrate the film’s 20th Anniversary, I have begun work on what I am calling the “Sony Godzilla Timeline”, a part of the site’s Timeline section that will chronicle all the major events of the universe Sony created for this particular version of the character. While the company only got one of its planned trilogy of Godzilla films out of the gate, the story of the first film DID continue, thanks to an excellent animated television show that aired shortly after the 1998 film’s release. As any fan who has seen it knows, Godzilla: The Series fairs much better than the film that spawned it, and tells 40 episodes-worth of exciting stories featuring more giant mutations, an alien invasion, and even a few welcome homages to the classic Toho films.
When combined, the movie and the series create a decently-sized series of events, all of which will be chronicled in the Sony Godzilla Timeline as I continue to add to it.
Whether you love or hate the film, one thing will always be certain…
That’s a lot of fish. 😉