An unknown accident occurs in Tokyo Bay's Aqua Line, which causes an emergency cabinet to assemble. All of the sudden, a giant creature immediately appears, destroying town after town with its landing reaching the capital. This mysterious giant monster is named "Godzilla".
This film's director and head of special effects, Shinji Higuchi, has previous experience working on special effects in multiple kaiju films by Toho. He previously worked as a special effects assistant for Godzilla 1985 (1984) and then was in charge of special effects for Shûsuke Kaneko's Gamera trilogy in the late 1990's. Higuchi also worked on the special effects in one scene for Godzilla, Mothra, and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack (2001). See more »
The drug that the government uses to kill Godzilla is described as something that will "disable his internal cooling system". After the drug is used at the end, Godzilla freezes. If the drug was supposed to disable his internal cooling system, it would have overheated him, not frozen him.
But it's a bit more complex than that... In fact, in the movie the drug actually does manage to disable Godzilla's cooling system, but in stead of overheating him this triggers a SCRAM-shutdown (=Safety Control Rods Activation Mechanism) as a kind of involuntarily overreaction-thus freezing him in the procedure.
By freezing himself temporarily, Godzilla is able to survive this potentially critical trauma. See more »
The movie was a great satire on the Japanese Government during the time of the earthquake and subsequent tsunami. The reactions by the Prime Minister, defense minister, etc etc during Godzilla's initial appearance perfectly recreate the indecision that lead to more people being killed in that country than necessary during the real life disaster. In short, this movie uses Godzilla to satirize the Japanese government. A new, more decisive body of government forms in the aftermath and one end of it wants to evacuate Tokyo to Nuke him and the other wants to make a more experimental approach by analyzing Godzilla's body chemistry (the science is actually pretty good and leads to a surprisingly tense climax that involves construction cranes pumping hoses down Godzillas throat). The scenes with the humans are also shot in a very dynamic and fast paced way. Characterization suffers (Japanese films do this thing where they just add an odd quirk to a characters personality and call it a day) but its all for the purpose on finding out how to take care of the giant monster rampaging through the city while minimizing human casualties. Believably too, like how the government would actually react would it have happened.
As for the big guy himself, Toho definitely plays around with him a lot. He's still a big green iconic monster, but they change his design more than I've ever seen before. When he first appears in the movie, he's more like a tadpole and over the film evolves into the monster we know. But even then he does things like opens his lower jaw when breathing fire like the predator, shooting beams from his dorsal fin and tail, and there's even a VERY chilling shot at the end involving Godzillas tail with some imagery with broader implications on what Godzilla is able to do. But for all these new things that happen, there's a bunch of stylistic choices that keep it rooted in its history. There's music being used from the original 50's score than ever before (they use more than just that classic brass theme), Godzilla still has his trademark roar, and when he breathes fire in a way we've never seen before (it starts as gas, lights up into a jetstream of flame, and then concentrates into a beam) there's a classic sound effect played that we haven't heard in ages. In short, there's a bunch of new and classic stylistic choices in equal measure. Plus the scene where he destroys Tokyo is, in a weird way, gorgeous to look at.
In short, this is the smartest giant monster movie I've ever seen. It's not for everybody but it's certainly for people who understand what that means.
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