Godzilla Raids Again

Godzilla Raids Again (Soundtrack) | Gojipedia | Fandom

Composed by: Masaru Satoh

Following the smash critical and financial success of the first Godzilla film, Toho quickly threw out a sequel to capitalize on moviegoers’ fresh memory. The result was a far inferior film absent of its predecessor’s depth and emotional impact. I don’t consider Godzilla Raids Again to be the worst Godzilla film, but it is the most boring. The plot kicks off when pilots for a fishing company stumble upon two giant monsters. They and their friends and co-workers thereafter find their lives interrupted by monster attacks. This film introduced Godzilla’s first monster opponent, fellow mutant dinosaur Anguirus, but (spoiler) he dies before the last act. The rest of the movie is a bunch of daily drama involving the human characters, until Godzilla appears for a slow-paced fight with planes. I fault the rushed production for the lackluster nature of the film, as the focus on giant monsters disrupting the lives and careers of ordinary workingmen is a neat concept.

Another aspect that dipped in quality is the score. Akira Ifukube was likely not available so instead Toho assigned Masaru Satoh to the role. Satoh’s themes simply fall short of his predecessor’s and he doesn’t have much variety in his music either. The main title theme is light-hearted and adventurous, though its later notes do suggest some peril. The other theme for the monsters is low and plodding, based around growling bass and dissonant piano. Occasionally cymbal crashes give it a little infusion of energy. Like Ifukube’s Terror of Godzilla theme it comes off as a dirge, but less dramatic. It sounds cheaper and comes off as droning underscore (which it is, but shouldn’t be). It would work better as an occasional bridging piece to convey some horror, not as a major identity that takes up most of the album’s runtime (though the album is rather short). There are a few more melodic sections, such as the somber “Osaka in Ashes” and the darkly reflective “Memories Left” but these are exceptions. At least Satoh ends the score with a triumphal “Ending.”

Satoh would go on to score three more films in the series with far better results. His score does not make as much impact in the film and is weak as a stand-alone album. At best a couple or more minutes of this music would work in a Godzilla compilation to represent Godzilla Raids Again.

Final Rating: 3/10

Tracklisting

  1. Main Title
  2. Battle At Iwato Island
  3. Dragons Falling
  4. The Quiet Peace
  5. Godzilla Located
  6. SDF Scramble
  7. Godzilla In Osaka Bay
  8. Flares & Godzilla
  9. Scarlet Chain Reaction
  10. Osaka In Flames
  11. Death Battle At Osaka Castle
  12. Osaka In Ashes
  13. Northern Land With Dancing Snow
  14. Godzilla Advances
  15. Fighter Sortie
  16. Kobayashi’s Plane & Godzilla
  17. Death Of Kobayashi I
  18. Death Of Kobayashi II
  19. Memories Left
  20. Battle To The Death
  21. Last Attack
  22. Ending
  23. Godzilla Located
  24. Kobayashi’s Plane & Godzilla
  25. Death Of Kobayashi
  26. Godzilla I
  27. Godzilla II

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