Godzilla: King of the Monsters arrives in theaters this weekend. It’s a sequel to 2014’s Godzilla where the enormous beast wreaked havoc in San Francisco and battled Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Bryan Cranston and Ken Watanabe. Despite receiving somewhat mixed reviews, the film grossed over $500 million and guaranteed a sequel. This new movie sees Godzilla battle his old foe Mothra and meet up with Millie Bobby Brown, Vera Farmiga and Kyle Chandler.
One thing it won’t have is even a passing reference to Roland Emmerich’s 1998 Godzilla. That movie was the first time that Hollywood tried to take the Japanese classic and turn it into an American blockbuster. The hype for the movie was endless and included a Taco Bell tie-in, action figures, wall-to-wall commercials and a soundtrack featuring Rage Against the Machine, Ben Folds Five, Green Day, the Wallflowers covering David Bowie’s “Heroes” and, most memorably, Sean “Diddy Combs’ song “Come With Me.” This was near the pinnacle of Diddy’s commercial career and he recruited Jimmy Page to replay his parts from Led Zeppelin’s 1975 classic “Kashmir.”
The song hit just as Page was re-teaming with Robert Plant for Walking Into Clarksdale, their first studio album together since Led Zeppelin disbanded in 1980. Unsurprisingly, “Come With Me” got significantly more attention than any of the songs on Walking Into Clarksdale, even if some of it was from Zeppelin fans that found the whole thing sacrilegious and more than a little ridiculous. After all, Jimmy Page had finally coaxed Robert Plant back into the studio after nearly two decades and he felt this was the time for Puffy’s take on “Kashmir?”
What’s easy to forget that many big movies from that era were paired with high-profile songs that often became enormous hits. Think of Titanic and Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On,” Armageddon and Aerosmith’s “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” and Men in Black and Will Smith’s “Men in Black.” The songs promoted the movies just as the movies promoted the songs. They all went into heavy rotation on MTV, basically providing free commercials for the films. Everyone made a fortune.
But none of those other songs featured Diddy rapping over a Led Zeppelin song. And with all due respect to Page and Combs, it wasn’t aged very well. Check out the video right here and judge for yourself.
There’s nothing like “Come With Me” on the Godzilla: King of the Monsters soundtrack, but next year Godzilla vs. Kong is coming out. Maybe Jimmy Page and Puff Daddy are locked away in the studio as we speak redoing “Black Dog” or “Achilles Last Stand” for it, but let’s hope not.