05th Feb2015

The playground of New York: Godzilla vs King Kong

by Guest


Godzilla and King Kong are household names for most people. They have been portrayed in films since the ‘30s, and continue to inspire new movies even today. King Kong’s origins are American and Godzilla’s Japanese, although both are born of a fear of the unknown, and an imagining of what massive creatures may exist in unexplored places. Between them they have wreaked havoc on multiple locations around the world; Kong always dies, whereas it is often implied that Godzilla gets away – and both beasts have been shown in a more sympathetic light in more recent films.

There are some standards that run through all the King Kong and Godzilla films, and some fundamental differences. In King Kong (1933), Kong kills a Tyrannosaurus Rex before being transported to America, where he then breaks free and goes on a rampage through Manhattan, climbing the Empire State building before falling to his death. In the first Godzilla film (1954), Godzilla attacks a soviet submarine and a Japanese nuclear power plant, never getting anywhere near America. A later instalment (1998) sees Godzilla arrive on American soil, diving into the Hudson River and later destroying Brooklyn Bridge, as well as an unfortunate taxi cab. This is Godzilla’s most destructive film in some ways. Although the scale of destruction is bigger in the latest Godzilla film, released in 2014, in that later version Godzilla is seen as a benevolent force which fights to protect America, after battling another monster which lays waste to Las Vegas.

Another King Kong film wouldn’t be made until 1976, and although it followed the same key plot points there are some fundamental differences. The reason for the journey to the island is to look for oil, and Kong kills a snake rather than a T-Rex. Instead of the Empire State Building, King Kong climbs the World Trade Centre, still falling to his violent death. The end of a Kong film is now characterised by the line – ‘it was beauty that killed the beast.’

Out of the two monsters, it’s hard to say who has caused the most destruction, as different versions contain varying levels of chaos. In one film, King Kong vs Godzilla (1962) they even cause mayhem together, destroying a Japanese castle after battling at the summit of Mt Fuji. Godzilla has destroyed Brooklyn Bridge; King Kong has dismantled the Empire State Building twice. In their last movies, both were portrayed as a force for good – in terms of damage, King Kong is probably the winner, but Godzilla is the only one who ever gets to walk (or swim) away.

Sponsored Post

Comments are closed.