With 32 films produced including 1954 original, Godzilla is probably one of the longest-running film franchise in film history.
Thus, the monster has become quite the cultural icon spawning movies, spin-offs, video games, and other media products further cementing it in popular culture for decades.
Here are 10 of the best Godzilla movies ranked and reviewed.
Top 10 Best Godzilla Movies of All Time
King Kong vs Godzilla (1962)
Two of the most iconic giant monsters to ever grace the silver screen face head-on in King Kong vs. Godzilla (1962).
The third film in the Godzilla franchise, the film tells the story of how King Kong was captured and shipped to Japan by a pharmaceutical company. The giant gorilla then breaks free from captivity and comes face to face with a recently released Godzilla.
Dubbed as the ‘Clash of the Titans’, the film is a fun and entertaining watch for every monster movie fan.
Godzilla vs Mechagodzilla (1974)
Godzilla faces a robotic opponent in Godzilla vs Mechagodzilla (1974).
Here we see a group of ape-like aliens build a robot counterpart to Godzilla in an attempt to destroy the entirety of Japan. As expected, the science fiction film features tons of violence and gore especially when the two giant monsters face off against each other.
We also see a different Godzilla here. Instead of taking on the role of the main antagonist, Godzilla is the hero of the film saving Japan from destruction.
Godzilla vs Biollante (1989)
In Godzilla vs Biollante (1989), we see a scientist create a new monster from Godzilla’s cells combined with that of a rose. What results is the birth of an equally terrifying monster that matches up against Godzilla.
The film follows the usual Godzilla vs… trope found in the franchise’s sequels. However, the film stands out because it is probably the darkest and most violent installment of the series. Boasting an improved look and special effects, the film is filled with lots of bloody scenes and awesome fight scenes between the two larger than life monsters.
Godzilla vs King Ghidorah (1991)
Released in 1991, Godzilla vs King Ghidorah is the 18th film in the monster franchise.
In the 23rd century, a group of time travelers attempts to stop the eventual mutation of the monster Godzilla. Unfortunately, their failed attempts led to the birth of an equally terrifying three-headed dragon which also wreaks havoc in Japan.
Admittedly, the film has some serious plot holes but it makes up for it with well-executed battle scenes (at least for its time) that left viewers gasping for air. It’s also a step up from other Godzilla films due to its more complex plot filled with unexpected twists and turns.
Godzilla (2014) is an American production of the beloved Japanese film franchise produced and distributed by Warner Bros.
The film serves as a redeeming attempt to make up for the flop of the 1998 American remake of the monster and it was successful. The 2014 version stuck to the original’s storyline and is seen as a fantastic homage to the iconic Japanese monster film.
Shin Godzilla (2016)
One of the latest Godzilla films, Shin Godzilla (2016), also known as Godzilla resurgence, follows the success of the 2014 reboot of the film franchise.
Here we see everyone’s favorite monster rise up again, this time from Tokyo Bay’s Aqua Line, to destroy his favorite city of Tokyo, Japan.
Continuing the monster movie tradition, Shin Godzilla is a fast-paced and action-packed film that will thrill audiences from start to end. The monster is seen in more sophisticated special effects which further emphasized its grandeur. What more, it also presents a great political commentary on Japanese politics and the Japanese government.
Godzilla, Mothra & King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (2001)
In Godzilla, Mothra & King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (2001), we see the awakening of three ‘guardian’ monsters– Mothra, King Ghidorah, and Baragon– which were employed to fight off Godzilla who unexpectedly returns to terrify Japan again.
The film stands out from the film series’ sequels as it returned to the original film’s dark and serious tone. It’s also notable for using electronic and new age music instead of the usual orchestral scoring found in its predecessors.
Godzilla vs. Destoroyah (1995)
Next on our list of the best Godzilla movies is Godzilla vs. Destoroyah (1995).
The world faces a serious threat when the monster Godzilla is discovered to have developed a sort of flaming glow which is explained to be caused by his nuclear energy growing more powerful. And if that isn’t enough, another horde of terrifying creatures created by the mixing of Godzilla’s cell and the Oxygen Destroyer also threatens to wreak havoc.
The film is well-received by critics and was seen as a proper ending film for the second series of Godzilla films.
Mothra vs Godzilla (1964)
In Mothra vs Godzilla (1964), we are introduced to a motherly monster, Mothra, whose peaceful life with her eggs is disturbed by the return of the monster Godzilla who was awoken by a drilling project that sought to dry out an entire part of the ocean.
The film is most notable for its excellent musical score and gripping storyline. What more, it’s a step up from your usual fare of monster films with its well-developed and likable set of characters.
Of course, which better film to top a top 10 list of the best Godzilla movies than the original one. After all, it’s the film that started the franchise.
However, we didn’t give it the number one spot just because it was the original film but because of its own merits.
The story goes…Godzilla, a dinosaur-like monster was born out of the nuclear weapon tests that Americans did in Japan. The monster then starts destroying ships at sea. But the real trouble and panic start when it starts to head for the shore.
Ishiro Honda’s film is a total nail-biter from beginning to end. Modern viewers will be kept on the edges of their seats with its gripping story. Just look past its dated special effects. The movie is one of the best Godzilla movies of all time.
Which of these Godzilla films have you or haven’t you seen yet? Tell us in the comments below.