Flashback Review: Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla

After Japanese movie studio “Toho” released “Godzilla, Mothra & King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack” (GMK for short) in 2001, they commenced development of another entry of the “Millennium Series.” This time they brought back a familiar opponent from Godzilla’s rogue gallery known as “MechaGodzilla” who made its debut since 1974 in “Godzilla Vs. MechaGodzilla.” The ginormous robot dukes it out with The King Of The Monsters in “Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla.”

Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla was released in 2002. (same year Christopher Nolan’s Insomnia came out) It received positive reviews from critics, fans & movie goers alike. In addition to positive reception, the film also made enough money at the box office. A direct sequel titled, “Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S.” takes place after the events of Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla.

With the highly anticipated “Godzilla: King Of The Monsters” coming out on May 31st, I thought about sharing my opinion on each Godzilla movie linked to the Millennium Series up until Godzilla makes his return on the silver screen alongside fellow Kaiju like Mothra, Rodan & King Ghidorah.

The following review doesn’t contain any big fat SPOILERS. If you haven’t seen this movie or have no knowledge about the long running franchise, feel free to read my non-spoiler article. If you want more confidential information, look up video game/film critic James Rolfe/Angry Video Game Nerd’s “Godzillathon” from his website “Cinemassacre.” He’s a passionate fan of Godzilla.

Strong & Weak Aspects

Strong: Action Sequences were decent enough to keep me entertained.

Fight Scene between Godzilla & MechaGodzilla was awesome. Similar to that one episode from “Courage The Cowardly Dog” when Courage battles a robotic version of himself in a coliseum.

Practical Effects were heavily used to create miniatures to resemble Tokyo’s environmental locations, pyrotechnics blowing crud up & customized suits for stuntmen to portray Godzilla & MechaGodzilla.

Cinematography felt alright lacking Shaky Cam. If they hired the same principal photographer from “I Am Sam,” the camera would’ve gone haywire.

Computer Animation didn’t seem fake. It was limited in a good way.

Like the other two entries in the Millennium Series, this film takes place after the original film. The Military salvaged Godzilla’s remains to construct MechaGodzilla. Suddenly… the machine is under control by Godzilla’s bones encoded to his genetic material. Which means Godzilla from 1954 is resurrected, rather than an undead zombie from the previous movie. I would describe the movie as “Godzilla Vs. Godzilla.” Similar to a fighting game when two players select the exact same character.

Flashbacks show Godzilla 1954’s demise and two other Kaiju.

MechaGodzilla’s codename is “Kiryu.”

MechaGodzilla has some cool arsenal to combat Godzilla. His weapons are a jetpack, a chest cannon like Iron Man, a freeze blast, missile launchers mounted on each shoulder, frickin laser beams attached to his arms, fingertips & hands. Don’t forget his energy blast coming from his mouth just like his foe’s trademark atomic breath.

The Military in this movie are fully aware they will do anything they can to help the citizens of Tokyo evacuate and retreat, knowing that their weaponry is impenetrable to Godzilla. Mechagodzilla is their only chance.

One scene predicted “The 2003 Northeast Blackout.” Fiction becomes reality.

The human protagonist wasn’t boring. She had an interesting backstory yet not similar to the other human protagonist from Godzilla Vs. Megaguirus. As the film progresses, her comrades begin to trust her as a valuable asset to aid their battle against The King Of Monsters.

A Post-Credits Scene is shown.

Weak: English Dub actors translating Japanese dialogue is somewhat hokey. It must be hard to take a foreign film seriously when it comes to translating for an American audience.

A cheesy Freeze-Frame occurred before a Post-Credits Scene ended the whole movie. Freeze-Frames are one of the cliches I dislike in a movie or TV show. I tend to make fun of it by pretending to be a narrator of a soap opera. I prefer a movie to fade to black or smash cut to black.

Product Placement featuring brands such as Sony & Visa. I’ll give this con a pass, because I couldn’t find any other brand to shove down my throat.

The Final Verdict: B, FOR BIGGER & BETTER!

Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla is a decent entry of the Millennium Series. All the positive things are redeemable. It’s about time Toho made a really good Godzilla movie, rather than a disappointment or just another typical average entry. If you’re excited to see Godzilla: The King Of The Monsters this Friday, go ahead and give this one a watch.

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