My Godzilla Raids Again Places

4.24.2020

Happy Birthday Godzilla Raids Again (1955) released today fifty-six years ago. Last year on my trip to Japan, I traveled to Osaka and took in as many Godzilla places as I could. I had been there before but get around to those iconic 1955 places. Let’s take a virtual trip.

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Osaka Castle & Osaka Castle Park

Osaka Castle (大坂城, Osaka-jo) is a Japanese castle in Chuo-ku, Osaka, Japan. The castle is one of Japan’s most famous landmarks and it played a major role in the unification of Japan during the sixteenth century of the Azuchi-Momoyama period. Osaka Castle Park (大阪城公園, Osaka-Jō-Koen) is a green, forest-covered oasis in the city of Osaka. Osaka It is a public urban park and historical site situated at Osaka, Japan. This park is the second largest park in the city.

Osaka Castle Park is enormous. I got lost multiple times trying to find the various Godzilla places. I went around and through the park three times and much time elapsed. Although I had movie stills on my iPad and used Google map directions, the park is vast and exhausting to cover on foot. It was crowded with many large tour groups making it difficult to move about at times. Working my way up into the castle took more time than I realized. But the reward was worth it as the trails give way to spectacular views of the castle.

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Sengan-yagura Turret

Sengan-yagura Turret (千貫櫓) is one of the thirteen key parts of the Osaka Castle complex in original condition that are so significant that the Japanese Government has designated them to be Important Cultural Properties. This turret was built to defend the Otemon Gate from the north. The walls contain loopholes for shooting enemies with matchlock guns. Its name comes from a battle between the Nobunaga army and Ishiyama Hongan-ji temple. The Nobunaga army had trouble advancing past a turret that was in this area, leading them to remark that they’d be happy to pay a thousand copper coins (sen gan mon) to be able to take it. It was built in 1620 and disassembled and repaired in 1961.

My first destination inside the part was Sengan-yagura Turret. While walking up toward Sakuramon Gate, I imagine Godzilla and Angilas fighting to the death.

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Sakuramon Gate

Sakuramon Gate (桜門) was burned down in the 1868 Boshin War. But in 1887, it was returned to its original state. It was disassembled and repaired in 1969.

The walk along the bridge to Sakuramon Gate is long and inclined. During the Toyotami era, this gate was given its name on account of the cherry-tree-lined paths nearby. The main entrance to the inner Bailey of the Main Tower. There is still a long way to go to the castle. The views along the walk are amazing. Take your time and take plenty of pictures. Before you know it Osaka Castle will be towering above you.

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Former Headquarters of the Fourth Army Division

Finding this Godzilla 1955 place was highest on my list. It’s the iconic location of the Former Headquarters of the Fourth Army Division (日本殺陣道協会 – 侍・忍者体験). It is a historic Western-style building built in 1931. It was recently restored. Inside are a variety of shops and eateries. After World War II, the building was used as both the Osaka City Police Headquarters and later, the Osaka Prefectural Police Headquarters. The interior then underwent a remodeling and, between 1960 and 2001, was the site for the Osaka City Museum. It is now called the Miraiza.

After leaving Osaka Castle Park, there’s still more to see for Godzilla Raids Again Places. There the view of the expanse beside the Bank of Japan Osaka Branch sits where Godzilla and Angilas rumbled overlooking the Yodoyabashi bridge.

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Bank of Japan Osaka Branch

The Bank of Japan Old Osaka Branch (日本銀行大阪支店) is a beautiful Western-style building in stone and brick with a blue-green roof dome. It was built in 1903, modeled after the National Bank of Belgium and designed by Kingo Tatsuno, who designed Tokyo Station and Osaka Central Public Hall.

After taking in the views I crossed the Yodoyabashi Bridge to the subway station flooded by the fierce battle between gigantic monster sweeping.

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Yodoya Bridge & Yodoyabashi Station

The Yodoyabashi (淀屋橋) spans the Tosabori River. Initially, the bridge was constructed by Japan’s premier lumber magnate Yodoya Joan from which comes its name. The original bridge was washed away in the Great Flood of 1885. The present bridge is the result of the First Urban Planning Project started in 1922. About 70K pedestrians and 60K cars cross its deck every day. Yodoyabashi Station (淀屋橋駅, Yodoyabashi-eki) is a railway station on the Osaka Metro Midosuji Line and the Keihan Railway Keihan Main Line. It is the nearest station to Osaka City Hall. In Godzilla Raids Again, the three criminals flee into the station before their doom.

Crossing the Yodoya Bridge we approached the Yodoyabashi Station looking across the river where Godzilla and Angilas smashed Osaka City Hill.

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Osaka City Hall

The municipal government of Osaka meets in Osaka City Hall (大阪市庁舎). The current government building is the 4th generation, completed in 1986.