ByTré Roland-Martin, writer at
This is a MP blog where I state my opinions on upcoming movies and give predictions, review canceled projects, and talk about bad movies.
Tré Roland-Martin

Yonggary was made in 1967 as the South Korean counterpart to Japan's Godzilla. However, eighteen years later in 1985, North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il (also a successful filmmaker) teamed up with director Shin Sang-ok to create a movie combining kaiju with historical elements, also adding some political propaganda in the process. The film was known as Pulgasari, and was so far North Korea's only kaiju/giant monster film that was made publicly.

The film begins in the Korean peninsula during the Goreyo Dynasty, which was indeed the first Korean dynasty, in which a brutal king controls the land in a mostly tyrannical manner. An imprisoned blacksmith creates a small figurine of a monster out of rice, and when it came to contact with the blacksmith's daughter, the doll turns into a giant creature named Pulgasari. The monster eats metal in order to survive, and no, I'm not kidding! An uprising emerges in the land, and Pulgasari, along with an army of peasants, kills the king and overthrows the monarchy, signifying the film's significant use of Communist political elements.

The monster in Pulgasari was based off of a creature of Korean mythology that was also named Pulgasari. The legend took place in what is now modern Kaesong, which is in modern North Korea.

Pulgasari was released on July 4, 1998 in Japan, where the film had gained an immense cult following among Japanese kaiju nerds. The staff from legendary Japanese film studio Toho, who produced the Godzilla movies, were involved in providing the film's special effects, and stunt actor Kenpachiro Satsuma, who played Godzilla from 1984 to 1995, had even played Puigasari himself.


What are your thoughts on Pulgasari?


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