Sunday, June 17, 2012

Godzilla vs. The Creature from the Black Lagoon

The hubs is watching "Gojira" with the girls right now.  Before he put it on he invited me in to help preface the movie with some context on why it might just be a stupid monster movie today but it was genuinely terrifying to people in the 1950s.  We talked a little about WWII and atomic energy and nuclear hysteria.  Then they started watching together and I left.  I don't honestly know how they can watch those stupid movies.  And then, as I was thinking that, I realized that I watch movies every bit as stupid.  One of my favorite movies of all time is "The Creature from the Black Lagoon."  It's utterly moronic but I find it hypnotic.

The thing is, the hubs and I both understand and identify with the fears that drive our particular favorite monster flicks.  Godzilla was a modern update of the same fears that drove Mary Shelly's "Frankenstein."  Science is capable of monstrous things sometimes and those fears are manifest in reanimated corpses, giant irradiated lizards, and even the fantastically popular "Jurassic Park."  I prefer a different sort of film.  The impetus for "The Creature from the Black Lagoon" is a fear of the unknown, the undiscovered.  Even today we're visiting remote locations on our very own planet and finding things we never knew existed.  Any one of those things *could* be a murderous beast.  Our own bold strides into the world, our insatiable need for understanding and discovery and exploration, could bring about the end of the human race.  Movies like "The Creature from the Black Lagoon" and "Star Crystal" and "Event Horizon" are flicks I can get behind.  I don't care much for the "Jaws" movies but the novel is among my favorites, along with some of Benchley's other novels of undiscovered terror.

No point to this post, I just find it interesting to look at what psychology motivates our media choices.

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