Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by Goji »

I totally agree about the comparisons to the '70s battles. When I first got a boot of this 15 years ago, I thought the exact same thing. These days though, I think this may actually be my least favorite Toho Godzilla after Final Wars. I don't strongly dislike it the way I do with GFW, but I just have a really hard time sitting through it. It's overlong, the SPX are surprisingly weak, and I don't like the characters that much (the actors playing those characters really don't work for me either). The music is the highlight for me here, but this isn't one I revisit often. I think it's one of the worst in the series, to be completely honest.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

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Goji wrote:(the actors playing those characters really don't work for me either).
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by Space Hunter M »

Can we talk about how many shitty frame rate errors there are in this movie? I realize they were still getting used to the transition from editing everything entirely on film, but there's skreeonking ghosting in numerable shots.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by Dannybeane »

The "slow motion" is cringe inducing.

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by Zarm »

Ugh. I have not been looking forward to this one. If there was one G-film whose name was synonymous with disappointment, with a boring story and annoying characters and a really lame, really dumb main villain the thought or which made me long for good, quality cinema like Attack of the Clones and Waterworld, that movie would absolutely be...

...Well, 'Godzilla's Revenge,' probably.

But if there were a contest for a REALLY close runner-up, that would be Godzilla vs. Megaguirus.

Still, I tried to fight my pre-existing bias. Remembering scenes like the opening attack, and Kiriko's ride on Godzilla, I considered that since I hadn't seen this one in a long time, perhaps the film wasn't as bad as I remembered.

What I didn't expect was for it to be WORSE- badly-paced, slow, plodding, and silly.


The story, while generally straightforward, is just slow, and obvious. The characters lack depth; Kiriko is angry and Kudo is a goofball genius with a crush (if I had a nickel for every one of THOSE in a Godzilla series...). Kenny- I mean Jun- is a little moron, and all the rest, save the female professor (whose name I didn't catch) that develops the Dimension Tide, are little more than cardboard cutouts. Cardboard cutouts of idiots that thing it's a good idea to build black holes and fire them at the Earth; why does no one bring up the fact that this potential weapon is potentially Earth-destroying, while Godzilla is a theoretically-nonexistent threat (and would've been, if not for the secret Plasma Lab)? The cure is quite literally worse than the disease!

As for Godzilla, he... just doesn't want Japan to have any energy at all, for some inexplicable reason- picking up on the plot thread from Godzilla Millennium, even though the two aren't continuity-related. Maybe it was meant to be an ongoing theme? Regardless, he spends WAY too much of the final fight repeatedly falling down. It's the worst. I actually yelled at the screen "No, don't fall over again!" in frustration the third time or so. Possibly his only really great moment in the film is frying the Meganula off his dorsal spines.

But the real loser here is Megaguirus. What a letdown. Sure, the design is somewhat decent- but her power-set is inconsistent (particularly her movement and agility in any given shot), and in the end, it only takes 2 atomic breaths to destroy her completely; the whole battle is about being able to just hit her. This turns the film into, essentially, Godzilla vs. Mosquitoman; an irritating little buzzing thing that can be easily smashed, and just needs to be caught. (At least it was not nearly as much of a string-fest as I remembered!)

And then there's the weird vibe here; between the black-goo killings and the rotted eye, this is one of the more disgusting G-films (okay, it's no Vs. Hedorah, but still...), and between the personal, liquid-spattering killings and the swarm of insect-enemies all over Godzilla, it kinda feels like someone was trying to rip off Gamera 2: Advent of Legion, only ineptly.

The special effects are the epitome of uneven; some of the worst cheapo 'manipulate a flat 2D image to fly around the screen like it was 3D except it never actually changes perspective so it just looks like a cardboard cutout' alongside a few surprisingly-decent effects. Bluescreening continues to be a problem; while it puts the Kaiju in real locations more effectively than ever before, they can never seem to match the grain or brightness of the setting; Kiriko looks faded on Godzilla's back, Godzilla looks faded as he marches toward the Secret Plasma Lab, Megaguirus looks faded every time she flies toward the camera with the city behind her. The Meganulon effects are pretty good, and although the CGI water looks a bit fake, the flooded-city effects are pretty effective uses of inter-cutting, especially the establishing shot of the boat that pans up to the city. And Kiriko's liftoff at the end does a great job matching the angle of the model with the matted-in cockpit; kudos. Still, these are generally the exceptions.

But can we talk about the miniatures? Because I knew we were in trouble with those ABSURD miniature trash cans at the start; I groaned 'No, movie- just... no,' aloud at that part, and when we got to the flooded city... ugh, these are some of the worst, undetailed, look-like-toys miniatures we've ever had in a G-film.

Even the Godzilla-swimming shtick that I loved from Millennium is no longer cool; the CG looks faker, and it's overused. (I like it conceptually, at least).

At least the uninspired score (oh, stringed instruments for insects, how original! :roll: ) did give us the familiar Millennium-version Godzilla theme, which- though not a patch on the original- was a good take on it... and hey, they threw in the original, too. That was nice.

If anything, though, it is the film-making that lets this one down the most. (Okay, the script would've been slow regardless, but judicious editing would've helped). Some of the directorial choices are just bizarre. Megaguirus' 10-FPS vision is an awful idea (I can think of no vision mechanism that would allow an organism to see color, detail, distance, and sharpness with absolute no problem, just... not in real time? That's not really how eyesight works...) that makes the models and miniatures look 1,000 times more fake (and like their real size). Some of the camera moves and editing- particularly the way-too-long slow-mo of the stinger hitting Godzilla's face and freezing there, followed by a jump cut to almost the same angle to pan around to Godzilla's mouth? As an editor, that was making me cringe. And let's not even get into some of the unfortunate battle choices...

...Actually, let's. The repeated stinger-to-the-almost-crotch attacks? Who thought those were a good idea? They just look dirty. And Godzilla shaking his head at hyperspeed? WTF? Ponderous motion to give the illusion of scale, remember that? And what in the world were they THINKING with Godzilla's super-leap? Beside the fact that the takeoff looked exactly like Orga's (and any shot that focuses on this suit's feet does it no favors), the Godzilla-falling-through-the-air shot was so painful, I'm pretty sure that Godzilla vs. Megalon wouldn't have accepted it. It was very Showa in the worst connotation of the concept; all the silliness with none of the fun that made it acceptable. This was something they were trying to pull of with a straight face. Just... ugh.

And lastly, we have the film's lapses in logic. The idea of building a testing a black hole gun anywhere near planet Earth is the largest- I assume they were trying to keep the test of Dimension Tide secret (lucky for Jun they didn't have him killed, assuming this was the case) to prevent the rest of the planet from launching a war of genocide against this universe's Japan for its arrogance, hubris, and playing with forces that could kill everyone on the planet instantaneously, before it could again endanger the entire human race with its irresponsible and monstrous experiments? That's a lot to trust a kid with. (I mean, seriously- any nation on Earth begins developing potentially world-destroying technology, weaponizes it, and starts playing around with test-firings? I'm pretty sure that 'better safe than sorry' would compel an immediate race to see whose nukes could reach that country first. To say nothing of the inherent, terrifying threat of having a satellite-based black hole gun that can rain down destruction ANYWHERE ON THE EARTH at 1-hour intervals??? This film makes Japan into the most horrifying superpower that's ever existed in all of history- but it's okay, because their naive 'intentions are good.')

It's doubly ironic when Godzilla 1984's- and in fact much of the Cold War's- huge threat was the illegal, treaty-banned hanging threat of a nuclear-missile satellite hanging like a Sword of Damocles over the planet. Well, congrats, G-graspers... you just exceeded that terrifying destructive potential by about 1000%, apparently without any oversight or security, so it could be both fired on a whim by anyone there, and taken over by an invading force with relative ease. You are essentially the vilest, most incompetent and deadly supervillains in the entire daikaiju genre. And for a film series that started by looking at the consequences of irresponsible use of a terrible new weapon... wow, has the apple fallen far from the tree.

But let's not forget, this is also a film universe where said weapon is tested within about 5 minutes apparent job from the suburbs- and in an area that impossible contain, as if just by closing roads in an area surrounded by woods, that keeps anyone from reaching the site on foot. (This is literally the second worst idea, next to building DT in the first place, that this movie contains; what idiots would ever test a top-secret doomsday weapon this way???)

A film universe where a group of kids learn that, instead of magic, a man has invented a portable bowl-shaped microwave and an army of micro-robots that can work at super-speed and are DISAPPOINTED BY THIS DEVELOPMENT. (This movie is written by someone that has never met an actual child in his life, apparently.)

A film universe wherein a falling, melting satellite wreathed in flames without any stabilizing equipment can maintain its target lock and function with full efficiency right up until the very second it shatters from the strain. (This movie was written by someone who has never held- or dropped- actual electronics in his life, either.)

A film universe in which they REPEATEDLY have knowledge of the behaviors of creatures that have been extinct for millions of years ("They're very aggressive and territorial," etc.- HOW DO YOU KNOW THIS??? I get that Jurassic Park kinda pulled the same shtick, a little... but that was based on biology, and behavior patterns were just theories that got confirmed or proven incorrect throughout the film! Here, this guy is just talking as if scientists have been observing them in captivity the whole time.)

A film universe in which 'electing a queen bee' apparently means 'triggering the extinction of your entire species except for one, who makes no attempt to reproduce.' This seems like a BAD plan, biologically-speaking.

I dunno- I suspect this review might be badly received, because I am seeing a lot of people, bizarrely, describing this film as 'fun'- whereas I would call it 'anti-fun.' Or 'dull, plodding, boring, stupid, and did I mention dull?' I only have one explanation for the incongruity; the world from which I am posting is actually on the other side of an unstable wormhole, created when Dimension Tide was fired at GXM from my universe- sucking all the fun and quality and even basic watch-ability out, and somehow depositing it into the film version from your universe. :D

...And then, this boring film* ends with a fake victory that is hinted at being undone before the credits even roll and definitely undone immediately after they finish... and it ends by, bizarrely, repeating the EXACT same 'punch on the arm, oh I forgot you were injured' gag that they did 1 MINUTE PREVIOUSLY in the control room celebration scene! What the even heck, movie???

In the end, when I was watching the heroine soldier who felt guilt over getting people killed in flashback stand and survey the aftermath at golden hour with her hair down for the first time and blowing in the wind, I couldn't help thinking how similar Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla felt (up to and including action scenes midway through in a Griffon-like vehicle)... as if someone looked at this movie and said 'there are some good ideas here, if only we could execute them right, and incorporate them into a non-sucky movie; let's try again.' That seems as good a summation as any for this boring, silly movie**; but then, what more could one expect from a film that names its major anti-Godzilla force the 'G-graspers?'***


*Hands-down worst of the Millennium series; nothing else comes close. Seriously, guys- I don't hate Final Wars like many here seem to (we'll get there in a few weeks...), but even if I did, I would still take all the worst moments over this terrible, terrible film. At least it was never DULL.

**Considering that I seldom watch vs. Destroyah for fun- it's a decent movie, but definitely not 'fun'- and that's the other film in this 2-disc blu-ray set, this easily wins the 'hands-down least frequently leaves the shelf' award for my G-collection.

***A mission which is technically accomplished the moment that Kiriko grabs hold and climbs aboard him. Also, she's not having any children in her future. (Kinda surprised they didn't deal with the whole 'wow, you were exposed to such much radiation, you are going to die' thing.)
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by edgaguirus »

[quote="Zarm"]Ugh. I have not
And lastly, we have the film's lapses in logic. The idea of building a testing a black hole gun anywhere near planet Earth is the largest- I assume they were trying to keep the test of Dimension Tide secret (lucky for Jun they didn't have him killed, assuming this was the case) to prevent the rest of the planet from launching a war of genocide against this universe's Japan for its arrogance, hubris, and playing with forces that could kill everyone on the planet instantaneously, before it could again endanger the entire human race with its irresponsible and monstrous experiments? That's a lot to trust a kid with. (I mean, seriously- any nation on Earth begins developing potentially world-destroying technology, weaponizes it, and starts playing around with test-firings? I'm pretty sure that 'better safe than sorry' would compel an immediate race to see whose nukes could reach that country first. To say nothing of the inherent, terrifying threat of having a satellite-based black hole gun that can rain down destruction ANYWHERE ON THE EARTH at 1-hour intervals??? This film makes Japan into the most horrifying superpower that's ever existed in all of history- but it's okay, because their naive 'intentions are good.')

No one ever said movies were logical. I suppose they wanted the test to demonstrate real conditions as much as possible. The U.S army made appartment buildings- at full code- so they could test incendiary bombs during WW2.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by RandomDeinonychus »

Even though it's my pikc for the worst of the Millennium films, I've watched this many times since it's a Godzilla film that isn't Godzilla's Revenge (although that film has its merits, in my opinion, it's still not something I can watch often), yet it was only when I was watching it for a review last year that I realized I would be able to forgive all its faults...if the final battle with Megaguirus wasn't in it.

Up to that point, brain-breakingly bad science and all, it's a fun Showa-style flm of the sort that Masaaki Tezuka actually did really well in Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla and, to a much lesser extent, Godzilla: Tokyo SOS. I wouldn't say it's good, but it's passable up until Godzilla wades into Tokyo at the climax. However, once Megaguirus's swoops in she tanks the film with everything she brings along: the bad effects work, the cartoonish zaniness, the slapstick bits, and Godzilla leaping into the air to body slam her.

It honestly feels like the effects crew realized Megaguirus was never going to work as planned so they just gave up.

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by eabaker »

I love the cartoonish zaniness. :D

It's such a weird hodge-podge of a movie, I can't imagine anything more grounded working as a final fight.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by Zarm »

RandomDeinonychus wrote:yet it was only when I was watching it for a review last year that I realized I would be able to forgive all its faults...if the final battle with Megaguirus wasn't in it.
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Doesn't it seem like the tracking bullet sequence would have made a lot more sense, story-wise, if they'd used IT to pull off the last-minute lock-on yo Godzilla with the falling Dimension Tide?

(Even though, really, the entire concept is ludicrous when Godzilla's size and lack of speed should make a manual targetting easy, and any gyro or manuevering jets to stabilize aim and maintain a lock seemed completely destroyed by the time it fired anyway...)
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by edgaguirus »

The tracking bullet would make sense used that way, but it's not as spectacular as a plane crashing into Godzilla.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by Rodan »

Going to second Zarm's observation that the minitatures are particularly unconvincing in this one, and a massive step down from 2000, which I still think has some of the best miniature photography of the franchise. There are modern Ultraman episodes that look better.

Going to completely disagree that the fight against Megaguirus brings the film down at all. While technically shoddy, it's one of the highlights of the movie and just a fun fight on its own. It would never fly in a more serious Godzilla entry, but that's part of the joy of seeing it here.

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by Space Hunter M »

Can we talk about just how ridiculous sending an infantry platoon against Godzilla is? With just normal RPG warheads?
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

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Space Hunter M wrote:Can we talk about how just ridiculous sending an infantry platoon against Godzilla is? With just normal RPG warheads?
Haha, that always bothers the poop out of me. What was their plan? Why is Tsujimori so insistent she stay to fire one more RPG at Godzilla?

It really needed one or two lines of dialogue about what exactly their mission was, and what they hoped to accomplish with their weaponry.

It's a cool scene visually, at least, except for the under-par miniatures.

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by edgaguirus »

You could argue that same point with tanks, planes, and other artillary. They do just as much good against Godzilla, but Japan does have to try to defend itself, even if it's futile.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by omgitsgodzilla »

I haven't bothered to actually watch this movie in a while, but the discussion I'm seeing here is reminding me of a few things that bugged me about the movie. I think, all in all, it has a lot of elements to it that were carried over to Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla, but were done a lot better in that movie.

You can draw comparisons between some of the core characters in this movie and GxMG, and see how they were consistently improved. Kiriko's backstory and motivation are really simplistic: Godzilla killed a mentor of hers, she wants revenge. She's an obvious, one-note character who isn't very entertaining. Akane is something of a loner who has something internal to overcome - she has to learn how to deal with her guilt over the soldiers she accidentally killed, as well as how to connect with other people (Dr. Yuhara, yes, but also the rest of Team Kiryu). Her struggle is more interesting and more relatable than Kiriko's, and she's better developed as well. Kiriko doesn't really seem to change or learn anything from defeating Godzilla, whereas Akane has obviously grown by the end of her movie - the confidence with which she walks away after saluting Kiryu in the last shot, and the way she's smiling, convey how far she's come from the beginning of the movie.

Kubo and Dr. Yuhara share the basic role of "Slightly goofy scientist with a crush on the female lead," but again, Kubo is a lot less interesting than Dr. Yuhara. He's more amusing than the characters around him, sure, but he still kind of falls flat. He's characterized as this kind of hip, funny guy, but the way he's portrayed makes his being a brilliant scientist less believable. He seems like a sort of devil-may-care class clown character, as opposed to the sort of person who'd put in all the work and studying it would take to reach the point he's supposed to have reached. On top of that, his continual crushing on Kiriko doesn't really make sense when she barely seems like a real person, never mind seeming like she might reciprocate his interest. Dr. Yuhara, on the other hand, is more plausible as a scientist, and the angle of wanting to be there for his daughter makes him a good deal more interesting as well - I don't think that sort of issue had exactly been raised with a character before him. His attraction to Akane makes more sense since she's a more real and likable character than Kiriko, and since we can sympathize with both him and Akane, we both root for him and sort of wince at his more awkward passes. Not only is the romantic subplot less inexplicable, it elicits much more of a response. Also, he's a better supporting character than Kubo was: While Kubo's role in the story was a supporting role, his personality and the way he was portrayed makes him seem like he should be the lead, despite Kiriko's more active role. This makes it feel like those two characters are competing for the spotlight, and it's a little confusing and distracting. Yuhara is a sympathetic and relatable character, but his personality is less relentlessly outgoing and keeps him from seemingly trying to eclipse Akane as the main protagonist. He fits into his narrative role a lot better.

Then there's the kid from vs. Megaguirus, whose name I can't really remember, and Sara. The kid in Megaguirus seems pretty tangential to the story, and the amount of screen time he's given early in the movie is odd considering that he's really just a plot device to get the egg cluster thing into Tokyo. He doesn't really have any personality to speak of other than "He's a kid," and his relevance to the ideas or themes of the story are limited to liking insects and knowing what the creatures he's released are so he can tell Kiriko. After that, he disappears from the movie until the stinger. Sara is integrated into the story much more effectively. Her backstory gives her a connection to the life/death/rebirth themes brought up by Kiryu, and her being Yuhara's daughter ties her into the story in a much more effective way. Her backstory and death-related emotional conflict also give her the common ground to bond with Akane, which not only ties into Akane's arc but fleshes out Sara's character in a way that they never bothered to do with the other kid. Hell, the sleeping grass even gives her a simple arc of her own, where she learns to move on from the death of her mother as she connects more with Akane.

Basically, Godzilla vs. Megaguirus seems to have contained the seeds of Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla in terms of the characters, but with their motivations, characterization and relationships handled infinitely better the second time around. The latter also avoids the worst of the pseudoscience in the former: Dimension Tide is not only impossible, but impossible because of the exact physical phenomena and properties of black holes that are supposed to make it work in the movie. It's a contradictory weapon that doesn't make any sense. The Absolute Zero cannon is also physically impossible, but it's not vital to the plot that it actually freeze things to an impossible temperature - it's just a freeze ray with a cool name, and the scientific problems with such a device are easy to ignore without affecting the plot.

Even the teams in each movie are handled better in the latter film - Team Kiryu are basically Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla's equivalent of the G-Graspers, and while there's a vague, underdeveloped subplot in Godzilla vs. Megaguirus about the secret plasma reactor, the G-Grasper team seems to function pretty efficiently and uneventfully. Team Kiryu has the subplot about Hayama's grudge against Akane, which not only makes the rest of the team more memorable, but also provides a way to keep Akane's redemption arc in the foreground by reminding us of Akane's guilt when Hayama antagonizes her, and by having the rest of her team stick up for her and bring her a little more out of her shell.

Basically, this movie seems in a lot of ways like a really early draft of Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla - it has a lot of the same components, but it's a lot less thoughtfully constructed and therefore a lot less effective.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by eabaker »

Those are all reasons that, on paper, Against Mechagodzilla reads like it should be the better movie.

For me, though, Megaguirus is easily the best Tezuka Godzilla movie (which is really damning with faint praise), simply because it has some entertainment value thanks to its goofy, fun-loving spirit. Against Mechagodzilla and *shudder* Tokyo SOS probably have, for me, the least interesting or engaging tones of any Toho-produced Godzilla movie ever. I'm not even sure Tokyo SOS has a tone; with Against Mechagodzilla, I feel like they're at least going for something impactful, but it's all handled in such a flat, by-the-numbers fashion that there's no sense of inspiration at all.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by omgitsgodzilla »

I personally find Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla really enjoyable. Easily the best Tezuka film in my opinion, and one of my favorites overall. It's not perfect, but the human characters are so much more entertaining than in most of the movies, which goes a long way for me. The script is just really well-constructed and seems more polished and thought through than this one or Tokyo SOS.

(I have to agree that TSOS, despite some really wonderful special effects, is bland as hell. It feels like they tried to repeat the elements of the previous movie that made it work, but they kind of half-assed it. Godzilla vs. Megaguirus, while it wasn't nearly developed enough, was at least making an honest attempt at something original and interesting. While I personally rate it the lowest of the Tezuka movies in terms of entertainment value, I definitely give it credit for making an honest effort and taking chances.)
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RandomDeinonychus
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by RandomDeinonychus »

Yeah, Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla is easily my favorite Millennium film. It's not perfect, but there's so much that works in it that I can overlook its flaws--and it has one of my all-time favorite human protagonists in a Godzilla film.

Godzilla: Tokyo SOS, now, I still have to say is better than Godzilla vs. Megaguirus, but that's a highly qualified comparison because they're both pretty awful. Mainly, the human characters and the effects make Tokyo SOS the more enjoyable watch--especially since it doesn't end with possibly the worst Godzilla fight ever put on film. However, Megaguirus, for all its many, many weaknesses is at least kind of original. Tokyo SOS, meanwhile, could be made up almost entirely of stock footage from Mothra vs. Godzilla, Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, and Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla and it wouldn't change anything.

That's not even getting into the fact that the whole plot device about Mothra being opposed to Kiryu's existence and Kiryu somehow being responsible for Godzilla's return makes very little sense and is utterly inconsistent in its execution. (Like how Mothra wants Kiryu scrapped, but for some reason stops Godzilla from destroying it and then helps Kiryu defeat Godzilla) Yet, even with all that I have to say I find it a lot easier to toss it on when I'm in the mood for a Godzilla movie, or looking to show my son one, than Megaguirus.

I'd be lying if I said it wasn't at least partially because the (sadly underused) heroine is cute as a button.

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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by edgaguirus »

I prefer Megaguirus. It feels like a made for tv movie, but it moves at a brisk pace, has a new kaiju, and the music score is quite good. I find G vs MG to be more fun to watch. If I want to see a good G film, I'll watch G against MG.
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Re: Talkback: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)

Post by JVM »

I watched this today for not-technically-but-practically the first time, as my previous attempts both utilized a library copy of the film that wasn't in good shape and would cut out close to the climax.

I thought it was okay - I can't argue it's a fantastic entry, but it's not outright terrible. I was mostly fine with the human cast - they're not the best characters Toho ever created, but most of them come from good ideas. The film is driven by such a complex plot that the characters don't shine through well, and I think the actors over-acted to compensate, but it didn't bother me on a strictly personal level. I've become just a little bored with the trope of pilot protagonists controlling giant robots, so the G-Graspers felt like a creative twist on directly dealing with kaiju as monsters, but it's obviously not something Toho should be trying to milk out in the future. I do have mixed feelings on the Dimension Tide epilogue after the climactic fight though, as it detracts from Megagurius' defeat and while it services Kiriko very well, it really takes away from the kaiju side of the film for me.

The SFX sequences for Godzilla feel a lot more imaginative than in some recent entries, but aren't always pulled off as effectively as one would hope - a positive highlight is, as often mentioned, Kiriko riding on Godzilla, while a negative one is pretty much any shot that is supposed to convey expression from the suit's head, which seems only capable of opening and closing it's jaw. Megagurius herself feels like a great concept with meh execution, mostly the aforementioned issues with her wings taking a lot of life out of the character. I wish more had also been done with her energy-stealing ability. The body slam bit is an interesting idea on paper, but comes off terrible in execution. But imo, the most distractingly bad effects work was the Dimension Tide itself.

I would call it mediocre more so than bland, if only because I admire a lot of the more creative aspects of the film, even when poorly-handled.
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