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Kaiju is a Japanese word that literally translates to "strange creature". However, the word has been translated to and defined in English as "monster", and is most often used to refer to a genre of tokusatsu entertainment; kaiju films usually showcase monsters attacking major establishments or engaging other monsters in battle.
Though the genre began and was popularized in the US with the 1933 classic King Kong and various other giant monster movies that followed, such as The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, it truly became the kaiju genre with the release and success of 1954's Gojira, and the many sequels that followed, as well as various other flicks following its footsteps.
The term Ultra-kaiju is longhand in the Ultra Series. Related terms include monster movies and films featuring giant and/or single monsters referring to roughly humanoid ones and Giant kaiju (or daikaiju) meaning larger ones. More humanoid and human-sized ones are often called "Kaijin", a term popularized by the Kamen Rider Series.