Recently while scrolling through the channels I stumbled across an old movie, a classic in some peoples eyes. This movie, Godzilla, King of the Monsters (1954), details how Steve Martin and a group of scientists are able to stop Godzilla from destroying Japan and show Godzilla's eventual death. I only watched about half an hour of the movie, but in these thirty minutes, two things dawned on me. The striking racial stereotypes of the Japanese people, and that I had forgotten to do my orientalism blog post. Now, to kill two birds with one stone, I will explain several of the racist depictions I viewed in.... Godzilla, King of the Monsters.
Throughout my half hour viewing experience, the most prominent example of orientalism was the depiction of everyday life. Every single Japanese person, excluding the scientist, was dressed as a farmer. With the large circular hat, shovels, and an overall dirty appearance. In one scene, the Japanese people plan an attack on Godzilla to scare him away. To no surprise, many of the people came out dressed like samurai, wielding katanas. This depiction of so-called everyday Japanese life perpetuates the stereotype that the Japanese people are all katana-wielding, samurai-dressed farmers. The doctors and scientists seen throughout the movie all appeared to be much more sophisticated than the common. They were seen running around battle scenes with white lab coats, and directing the people around. This, as well as the samurai scenario, are continuing examples of orientalism.