Godzilla GMK (2001, Shusuke Kaneko)

The full title (one of my all-time favorites) is Godzilla, Mothra, King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack!

Sparkling print (because it’s never screened anywhere) of the English dubbed version. Dubbing is always humorous, but it was less hilarious here than in For A Few Dollars More. Maybe that’s because the dialogue here was too worthless to worry about lip-sync… 90 minutes of soapy garbage surrounding an awesome 15-minute monster movie.


Forgetting about the garbage (it involved a disreputable docudrama production company somehow having handy all the equipment necessary to do wireless live reporting, a possible love triangle dropped early due to disinterest, a spooky old man/ghost who tells everyone about the spirits of dead soldiers trapped in some guardian stones, and somebody’s dad driving a research sub into Godzilla’s mouth to explode his insides), Godzilla is back and is fucking pissed. Reborn as a purely evil human-extermination machine with milky-white eyes and atomic breath, he easily stomps a friendly-looking burrowing Barugon halfway through the movie.

Big G. unleashes the mighty tail-flip upon Barugon:

This awakens the other two guardian monsters, honestly-not-all-that-powerful Mothra and three-headed dragon Ghidorah, who head to Tokyo for the big showdown. Ghidorah’s knocked cold, then Mothra is incinerated while trying to sneak up behind G. (who sometimes seems to be toying with his opponents).

Mothra sneak-attack:

But gold-sparkly Mothra-dust descends upon Ghidorah, turning him dramatically into the golden, winged KING Ghidorah, to the cheers and applause of the sold-out Plaza Theater. King G. bullies Godzilla underwater for a bit, finally eats atomic ray, and just when all hope seems lost for humanity, that girl’s dad does his thing with the submarine.

Triumphant rebirth of Ghidorah:

Yuri, our reporter heroine, appeared in Ju-on:Grudge 2, and her boss – is that the long-haired guy? – was in Godzilla 2000, the terrible Final Wars, and Evil Dead Traps 2 & 3. The ghostly old fella is a 60’s Godzilla veteran, also appearing in King Kong Strikes Again and Farewell to the Ark. Our director made the fully-decent 1990’s Gamera trilogy, a supernatural teen live-anime thriller series called Death Note, and a pyrokinesis horror called Cross Fire which I’ve had for seven years on VHS but never watched. His D.P. shot the non-Kaneko-affiliated Mechagodzilla follow-up feature, and Tsukamoto’s Hiruko The Goblin. And the guys in the monster suits all did motion-capture acting for the Metal Gear Solid video games.

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