Monster Movies of Monstrous Memories

“When I was a kid, whenever I was feeling small and lonely, I would look into the stars and wondered if there was life up there. Turns out I was looking in the wrong direction. When they entered our world, it was from deep within the Pacific Ocean, a fissure between two tectonic plates, a portal between dimensions: the breach.“

These are the opening words of Pacific Rim (2013), a classic monster movie. In this instance, the monsters are Kaiju, a Japanese word meaning ‘strange creatures’. They are huge, reptile-like things which devastate cities and human civilisation. The film is about the human race’s epic battle to defeat them. It wins, of course.

How many other films follow the same basic plot? Independence DayWar of the WorldsThe AvengersCrittersCloverfield, to name but a few. Essentially, terrifying monsters come from without to wreak havoc and destruction on an ill-prepared human race. As the Fermi Paradox demonstrates, the actual existence of alien life is highly unlikely, and yet our films’ script-writers find the topic irresistible. It’s almost as though we have an awareness that such an event has happened- and it has. When, we cannot say; how, we do not fully know. But powerful beings, bent on dominion and destruction entered our universe from the heavenly realm. Jesus Himself “… said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.” Isaiah, describing the same event, declares 

“How you have fallen from heaven,

O star of the morning, son of the dawn!

You have been cut down to the earth,

You who have weakened the nations!”

The Bible speaks little of this event, knowing humans’ propensity to seek evil rather than avoid it. Yet I cannot but wonder that our fascination with terrifying, invading monsters is but a dim recollection of a real, earth-shattering event.

 

And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.

Rev 12:11