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Greetings, and welcome to VIEWING THE CLASSICS. Here you'll find capsule reviews of vintage movies from the early days of cinema through the 1970s, with a special emphasis on sci-fi, horror, and mystery movies. Be sure to check out the Pages links, where you can find a Film Index of all my reviews, links to the reviews organized by cast members, directors, and other contributors, and links to my reviews of the films of talented young director Joshua Kennedy.

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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

King Kong Vs. Godzilla (1962)

Starring Tadao Takashima, Kenji Sahara, Yu Fujiki, Ichiro Arishima, Jun Tazaki
Directed by Inoshiro Honda
(actor & director credits courtesy IMDB.com)

While Godzilla is escaping imprisonment in an iceberg, a pharmaceutical company captures King Kong on a jungle island, leading to an eventual clash between the two titanic monsters.

If you were expecting detailed animated monsters rendered with cutting edge special effects, this isn't the movie for you.  However, if you're a fan of Godzilla movies, and enjoy seeing men in monster suits crushing miniature buildings and vehicles, you should be highly entertained.  Although by this time in the Godzilla series any emphasis on realism had declined a bit, a number of other special effects are put to good use to energize the monster battles, including rear projection, giant mockups of Kong's hands, and what appeared to be some stop motion animation to bring a giant octopus' tentacles to menacing life.   The grim devastation in the monsters' wake is lightened by some comical human characters, and although the actual battles between the primary monsters take up a surprisingly short portion of the film, I was entertained well enough, and liked the picture better than the Kong-confined sequel, King Kong Escapes.

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