An experience you can't download

Actor: Takashi Shimura

Godzilla (1954)

Godzilla (1954)

Director Ishirō Honda‘s original 1954 Kaiju classic GODZILLA (a.k.a. “Gojira”) is the roaring granddaddy of all monster movies. It’s also a remarkably humane and melancholy drama, made in Japan at a time when the country was reeling from nuclear attack and H-bomb testing in the Pacific. Its rampaging radioactive beast, the poignant embodiment of an entire population’s fears, became a beloved international icon of destruction, spawning almost thirty sequels.

One of the longest-running series in film history began with Honda’s grim, black-and-white allegory for the devastation wrought on Japan by the atomic bomb. As his visual metaphor, Honda uses a 400-foot-tall mutant dinosaur called Gojira, awakened from the depths of the sea as a rampaging nuclear nightmare, complete with glowing dorsal fins and fiery, radioactive breath. Crushing ships, villages, and buildings in his wake, Gojira marches toward Tokyo, bringing all of the country’s worst nightmares back until an evil more terrible bomb — capable of sucking all the oxygen from the sea — returns the monster to its watery grave. The original 1954 film is chilling, despite some rather unconvincing man-in-a-suit special effects, and brimming with explicitly stated anti-American sentiment.

“Seen afresh in this cut, with Honda’s pulp poetry restored, this ballad of destruction reveals itself as one of the most exciting, enjoyable and moving of them all.” (Time Out)

Saturday, August 22 Final screening!
Doors 7:15 pm | Movie 7:45 pm *Start time subject to change.
Advance tickets $15 HERE | $15 at the door

*Minors OK in the balcony. Must be 19+ w/ID for bar service and main floor seating.
**Rio Theatre Groupons and passes OK! Please redeem at the door.

PLEASE NOTE: All of the Rio Theatre’s screenings are operating at a sharply reduced capacity. We can’t guarantee availability of tickets at the door, so advance tickets for all screening events are strongly recommended. Our online box office can be found at www.riotheatretickets.ca. Online sales for every screening automatically end 1 hour before any given showtime.

GODZILLA “Gojira” (Ishiro Honda, 1954 / 96 mins / PG / Japanese with English subtitles) When a seemingly indestructible fire-breathing monster is created as a result of the testing of American nuclear weapons, the government takes help from a reclusive scientist to kill the monster.

The Hidden Fortress

The Hidden Fortress

The Rio Theatre‘s series of classic films continues on Sunday, August 27 at 6:00 pm with another monumental masterpiece from iconic director Akira Kurosawa, THE HIDDEN FORTRESS. (If you’re a fan of George Lucas‘ STAR WARS series – and really, who isn’t? – you will definitely want to check this one out! It’s one of… Continue Reading

Rashomon

Rashomon

Long before Quentin Tarantino was filing away endless VHS tapes as a video store clerk while dreaming up his signature approach to unconventional cinematic story logic that twists narrative structure and messes with an audience’s response to time – there was Akira Kurosawa‘s indelibly awesome (not to mention monumentally influential) RASHOMON. Brimming with action while… Continue Reading

Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai

Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai

We are toasting our friends and neighbors at Vancouver’s Powell Street Festival (August 4-5) with a screening of iconic Japanese auteur Akira Kurosawa‘s indisputably epic masterpiece SEVEN SAMURAI on Sunday, August 5 at 8:45 pm. A landmark film in Japanese cinema due to its creative and technical achievements, Seven Samurai has consistently ranked high among… Continue Reading