In 1984, a time also when there was a fad in the US for remaking 1950s science-fiction films, Toho went back and revisited Godzilla with Godzilla 1985 (simply called Godzilla in Japan). Godzilla 1985 was the first Godzilla film from Toho after nearly a decades silence. While announced as a remake, Godzilla 1985 clearly bypasses all the Godzilla vs the Sea , Smog and Cosmic Monster sequels and acts as a direct sequel to the original, pretending that all the others in between never happened. It abandons the idea of the monster as cartoonish national avenger engaging in tag-team wrestling matches and returns to the ferocity with which Godzilla emerged from the waters back in 1954.
The new Godzilla has been revamped with narrower eyes and a mouth like a tyrannosaurus and comes venting a genuine fury there is nothing cutsie about this Godzilla film at all. Toho have gone all out the effects and model work are top class, with Godzilla being partially represented by a mechanical mockup rather than the usual man in a monster suit. The massive scenes of destruction are intensely exciting, the highlight of which is a showdown between the Super-X fighter and Godzilla, exchanging ray blasts and radioactive breath at one another through holes blasted through skyscrapers. Godzillas size is occasionally variable he is said to be 80 feet tall but is also shown as being the same height as 50 story skyscrapers. The metaphor has been updated too, thrusting Godzilla into the era of NATO and coming to represent the anxieties of a Japan caught between the heightened East-West tensions of the Reagan era, as well as the odd side message about the environmental dangers of nuclear power plants. In one haunting metaphor, Godzilla is called an eco-warrior, seen as a living nuclear weapon, indestructible and destined to walk the Earth forever.
For once, the US version of the film has been mounted with considerable care, with new scenes directed by New World Pictures editor R.J. Kizer, later co-director of the hilarious Hell Comes to Frogtown (1987). Raymond Burr has even been brought back to frame the English-language scenes, as in the original, although the character is pointedly now just Mr Martin ... missing his Christian name Steve. A superlative job has been conducted on the dubbing few other films when dubbing a film into English would take the care to dub the scenes with the Russians into Russian and offer English subtitles.
Godzilla 1985 would be the last Godzilla film to be granted a cinematic released in the West for fifteen years. The revival was a big success in Japan and Toho then went onto to conduct a series of new Godzilla films Godzilla vs. Biollante (1989), Godzilla vs King Ghidorah (1991), Godzilla vs Mothra (1992), Godzilla vs Mechagodzilla (1993), Godzilla vs Space Godzilla (1994), Godzilla vs Destoroyah (1995), Godzilla 2000 (1999), Godzilla vs Megaguirus (2000), Godzilla Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (2001), Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla (2002), Godzilla: Tokyo SOS (2003), Godzilla: Final Wars (2004) and Shin Godzilla/Godzilla: Resurgence (2016), plus the anime Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters (2017). Many of these revamped Godzillas battles with various monsters during the 1960s and 70s. The most notable features are that these films take themselves seriously and are much better produced and with excellent effects.
The classic Godzilla films are: Godzilla, King of the Monsters (1954), Gigantis the Fire Monster/Godzilla Raids Again/The Return of Godzilla (1955), King Kong Vs. Godzilla (1962), Godzilla vs the Thing/Mothra vs Godzilla (1964), Ghidrah the Three-Headed Monster (1964), Monster Zero/Invasion of the Astro Monster (1965), Godzilla vs the Sea Monster/Ebirah, Horror of the Deep (1966), Son of Godzilla (1968), Destroy All Monsters (1968), Godzillas Revenge (1969), Godzilla vs the Smog Monster/Godzilla vs Hedorah (1971), Godzilla vs Gigan/Godzilla on Monster Island (1972), Godzilla vs Megalon (1973), Godzilla vs the Cosmic Monster/Godzilla vs the Bionic Monster/Godzilla vs Mechagodzilla (1974) and Terror of Mechagodzilla/Escape of Mechagodzilla/Monsters from an Unknown Planet (1976). Both Roland Emmerichs Godzilla (1998) and Gareth Edwards Godzilla (2014) are big-budget, English-language remakes.
Trailer here (Japanese language no subs):-