You know that couple that are simply the worst? They are insufferable together, but then they break up and are somehow even more annoying apart, so they get back together and then—well, you see where this is going.
People and technology have a similar relationship in Godzilla. We create nuclear weapons to end the last theater of a tragic and devastating world war. Then those weapons awaken a slumbering beastie from beneath the sea. Godzilla wreaks havoc across Japan until it is destroyed by the Oxygen Destroyer, a weapon way more powerful than the H-bomb. But now we have the Oxygen Destroyer to worry about.
Seriously, just what is that thing going to awaken? A planet-devouring space squid? This relationship needs some serious counseling.
Questions About Technology and Modernization
- Do you see Godzilla as being anti-technology? Why or why not?
- Does the film present any benefits of modern technology and scientific endeavors? If so, what are they and how do they shade your reading of this theme? If not, why do you suppose they're absent from the film?
- Does Serizawa's choice to destroy his notes and the Oxygen Destroyer really solve the problem of technology as presented in the film? Why or why not?
Chew on This
Many of Godzilla's destructive urges are against technological devices, like boats, trains, electric fencing, and helicopters.
Although Serizawa's Oxygen Destroyer gets all the credit, many pieces of technology, from many different professions, help defeat Godzilla: radios, scuba suits, and a Geiger-counter. Notably absent? Military technology.