Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Forgotten Monsters of Yesteryear - War of the Gargantuas

If you're over 40 and grew up in front of a television like me, you probably caught War of the Gargantuas on the afternoon movie-show multiple times (especially during the much anticipated "monster week" that seemed to come up every few months).

If not, well, I'm sorry. I'm not sure I ever sat through an entire viewing of Gargantuas. I always seemed to turn it on somewhere in the middle of the show. Or I'd lose interest halfway through and go outside and play. Even within the parameters of giant city-destroying Japanese monsters, Gargantuas were pretty weird. Mutant-looking with those weird flubby things hanging off their bodies, covered with matted hair. They were like tremendous crystal-meth addicts. I never found the charm in them, unlike Mothra, who was an oversized ecology-minded moth featuring tiny twin girls singing in tree branches for perplexing, mostly unsolved reasons.

Gargantuas were vaguely based on Frankenstein monsters and they were brothers. The green one liked to eat people. He's bad. The reddish brown one is nicer and has it out with greenie in the aforementioned war. Here's a pretty creepy scene involving airport havoc and human-eating (no clothes-eating though--ptooey!)

This excellent and unforgettable night-club scene features the worst chorus sung by a chanteuse in movie history. Yes, even worse than "That's how you stuff a wild bikini." This scenario instilled a high-camp aesthetic in me at a very early age.

The original inspiration?

1 comment:

Peter H. Brothers said...


Agoura Hills, California


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Known primarily for directing such classic Japanese monster movies as Rodan, Mothra, Attack of the Mushroom People and the original Godzilla, Honda has been a much-overlooked figure in mainstream international cinema.

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Making use of extensive interviews from Honda’s colleagues, as well as a wealth of original source material never before gathered into one volume (including previously-unpublished essays), MUSHROOM CLOUDS AND MUSHROOM MEN is an affectionate tribute to the most-prolific and influential director in the history of fantasy films.

MUSHROOM CLOUDS AND MUSHROOM MEN (ISBN No.: 978-1-4490-2771-1) is available at:, at online bookstores and as an “E-Book.”

Thank you for your kind attention!