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The Kaiju genre has experienced a significant resurgence in recent years that has been an absolute delight to watch. Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim (which will finally receive its long-awaited sequel in February 2018) arguably kicked off the trend back in 2013, and giant monsters have seeped into a broad range of filmmaking styles and categories ever since. Even Nacho Vigalondo's new dramedy Colossal proved that enormous, roving monsters could serve more than just on-screen destruction by telling intensely intimate, and wildly funny stories. Having said that, despite the extreme surge that we have seen take place in the Kaiju genre over the course of the last few years, nothing can come close to Godzilla. The behemoth Japanese lizard is the quintessential movie monster, and his legacy has been cemented by years of fantastic science fiction filmmaking.
Of course, Godzilla has benefited from the boom in Kaiju movies just as much as any franchise. The King of the Monsters landed back on the scene in 2014 with Gareth Edwards' Godzilla, and that film eventually paved the way for an entire cinematic universe centering around everyone's favorite monster -- called the MonsterVerse. There are quite a few impressive MonsterVerse films slated to debut in theaters within the next few years, so we have taken it upon ourselves to compile a list of the Godzilla movies that you need to keep an eye on. Without further ado, let's get started from the beginning and take a look at the next installment in the Godzilla saga.
Godzilla: King of the Monsters
Five years after making his grand return to the silver screen in Gareth Edwards' Godzilla, the King of the Monsters will defend his crown in the aptly titled sequel, Godzilla: King of the Monsters. This time around, Edwards has been replaced by veteran monster movie director Michael Dougherty, who is bringing back several of the original film's cast members, such as Ken Watanabe and Sally Hawkins. In addition to these returning elements from the original movie, we will also see several newcomers join the cast to bolster its already impressive roster, such as Vera Farmiga, Millie Bobby Brown, Charles Dance, and Kyle Chandler.
Not much is currently known about the particular plot direction of Godzilla: King of the Monsters, but we do know that (in true sequel fashion) it will ramp up the chaos and destruction in a major way. Hot off the heels of his battle with the MUTO, the titular lizard will face off against no less than three iconic Kaiju badasses: Rodan, Mothra, and Ghidorah. All of these monsters have long histories with Godzilla in various forms of fiction dating back to the beginnings of the Kaiju genre, but this will mark the first time that all three of them have faced off against the badass, atomic breath-fueled hero with the aid of modern technology and computer-generated visual effects. Needless to say, we are beyond excited.
Release Date: March 22, 2019
Godzilla vs. King Kong
In addition to Godzilla himself, another iconic monster will soon enter the greater MonsterVerse as well. Coming off of the successful release of Kong: Skull Island (which is ostensibly a prequel to the Godzilla films due to its 1970s setting) King Kong will soon go toe-to-toe against the King of the Monsters in a battle to see which of these Kaiju is the real champion of silver screen creatures. There is quite a bit of fanfare surrounding the upcoming release of Godzilla vs. King Kong, as this is a cinematic event decades in the making, but not much is currently known about the talent involved behind the scenes. No director is currently attached to helm the project, and no members of the cast are listed on its IMDb page -- which is arguably a good thing, as it will help the project maintain King of the Monsters' and prevent spoilers from ruining our knowledge of which characters live and die.
Of course, we should probably note that the MonsterVerse is going to need to do quite a bit of legwork in order to genuinely convince audiences that this is even a fair fight. This sort of battle was easy to convey when it was two poorly constructed creatures in stop-motion action, but modern technology has made these beasts far more convincing. There's a very clear disconnect between the abilities of the Godzilla seen in Gareth Edwards' film, and the skills of King Kong during the events of Kong: Skull Island. The short answer? Kong seems incredibly outmatched. The franchise obviously has three years to properly flesh out the giant ape and rationalize his modern day abilities in a way that makes sense, and that's really the main thing that has us concerned about this battle: a power imbalance.
Release Date: May 22, 2020
Which of the upcoming Godzilla movies are you most excited to see? Let us know in the comments section below!