List of giant-monster films
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This is a list of giant monster films according to their year of release. One of the first films involving giant monsters was the 1925 film The Lost World, as developments in cinema and animation enabled the creation of realistic giant creatures. This was followed by the 1933 classic King Kong. These early films had themes of adventure and exploration of unknown regions, and incorporated fights with giant monsters as a climactic element.
The development of atomic weaponry in the 1940s gave rise to its involvement in popular themes. The American 1953 film The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, featured a giant dinosaur that awakened due nuclear tests that took place in the Arctic and 1954's Them!, which involved giant irradiated ants. Another film: Tarantula had a spider rather than insects. Japanese cinema began its foray into giant monster films with the 1933 film Wasei Kingu Kongu (an adaptation of the American film King Kong). Later in 1954 the film Godzilla was released. This was followed by an ongoing trend of giant reptiles created by nuclear radiation. Japan continued with a giant moth in Mothra, a turtle in Gamera, and after these followed many more. Other countries have their own giant monster movies such as the United Kingdom with Gorgo in 1961.
Dinosaur-themed films experienced a revival in the 1960s with a 1960 remake of The Lost World, 1966's One Million Years B.C., and 1969's The Valley of Gwangi. Movies featuring Godzilla and Gamera were made into the 1970s, and 1976 saw a high-profile remake of King Kong. Awareness of toxic waste in the 1970s may have inspired 1979's Prophecy, which featured a giant mutant bear in the woods in Maine.
Godzilla was remade in 1998, and King Kong in 2005. 2008 saw the release of the successful Cloverfield, which some critics have claimed inspiration from the September 11 attacks. Pacific Rim, a film featuring giant mecha battling with kaiju, was released in 2013, and the following year Legendary reinterpreted Godzilla for a new generation of audiences in his 30th film.
- Newitz, Annalee (Apr 28, 2008). "Do Giant Disasters Provide Inspiration for Giant Monster Movies?". io9. Retrieved 2009-10-22.
- Stephen Jones (1995). The Illustrated Dinosaur Movie Guide. Titan Books. p. 42.
- Searles, Baird (1988). "Dinosaurs and Others". Films of Science Fiction and Fantasy. New York: AFI Press. pp. 104–115. ISBN 0-8109-0922-7.
- Roger Ebert (January 17, 2008). "Review: Cloverfield". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 2008-01-18.
- Stephanie Zacharek (January 17, 2008). "Cloverfield: Do we really need the horror of 9/11 to be repackaged and presented to us as an amusement-park ride?". Salon.com. Retrieved 2008-01-18.
- Newitz, Annalee (Jan 18, 2008). "Nevermind the Monster — Cloverfield Is All About 9/11". io9. Retrieved 2009-10-22.