aka Chikyû Kogeki Meirei – Gojira Tai Gaigan (Original Title)
89 min., 1972
Written by Takeshi Kimura/Shin’ichi Sekizawa
Directed by Jun Fukuda
My rating: ★★
A monster with a giant saw in its chest, completely cool!
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We meet Gengo (Hiroshi Ishikawa), a manga artist who has gotten a job at World Children’s Land to do some art for them. While there he meets the head of the place, Kubota (Toshiaki Nishizawa), whom Gengo finds really strange. He then meets Machiko (Tomoko Umeda) who is searching for her brother who started working there and suddenly went missing. She finds a tape and plays it for herself and Gengo. All it seems to be is garbled noise, but over on Monster Island Godzilla and Anguirus realize something is up. After a bit of time it is revealed that an alien race is trying to take over the earth and they end up calling upon King Ghidorah and a new monster called Gigan (who has a saw blade in his chest, again super cool!). Godzilla and Angurius face off against them and begin the battle for earth.
Again the acting is pretty good. Hiroshi Ishikawa and Tomoko Umeda are pretty good in the leads. Taking the material serious but at the same time they seem to be having fun with it. Both are enjoyable to watch. Their chemistry is a bit faulty at times but nothing that really hurts the overall feel.
Godzilla, Anguirus and King Ghidorah get a little bit of an upgrade in the costume department, but nothing really worth noting. But Gigan, the newest monster, is really a step up in the effects department, with a good mix of monster and machine; he is very nicely constructed and thought out. The “rays” and breath weapons have also been touched up a bit from the last movies, but again nothing that is really worth talking about. If anything, this movie shows that the effects department is actually trying to make advances in their field instead of just playing it safe with effects that have worked in the past.
So this movie is about aliens trying to take over earth by controlling monsters again. Not a new idea, but it hasn’t run dry either. When the series needs a good monster fight, all they have to do is bring back King Ghidorah and that always makes for a good monster throw down. One thing about this movie that is a bit different from most of the previous ones is blood. When Gigan uses his blade to cut the other monsters, they actually bleed. Don’t get me wrong, there isn’t a ton of blood, but they actually took into account that the monsters are getting cut and not just blasted with “rays”. It’s a tiny touch of realism that helps to enhance the movie. To the non-fan this is just a bunch of the same old stuff, but to the Godzilla fan, it’s a bunch of the same stuff with a new monster thrown in and a different alien race. So overall it’s fun to watch, but don’t go expecting something ground breaking or very thought provoking from this one. This would get a two for the Godzilla fan.Have You Read...?