10.12.2008

Godzilla vs Megalon : 2 of 5

As I was making my way through the Showa era Godzilla movies, I was shocked to find that Godzilla vs Megalon was not currently available on Region 1 DVD! Eventually I did some digging and found a source called Showa Video that had this missing movie available, and the quality of the Japanese version (including some impressive subtitles) was excellent. This movie gets trashed often, and I can understand why, but it was still a fun Godzilla experience for me. I enjoyed the slow build-up and pacing of the plot, which focuses on a scientist who builds Jet Jaguar, an Ultraman-ish robot who even gets his own theme song at the end of the film! The enemy this time is Seatopia, a kingdom under the sea (linked to Easter Island) who gets pissed off at all the nuclear testing, so they release Megalon (Megaro in the original Japanese), but they need Jet Jaguar to control the beast. Later Jet Jaguar (back under control of the good guys), goes off to get the help of Godzilla (who is the big hero in true Showa style), and eventually grows to kaiju size and helps in the battle. To even the odds for Seatopia, they decide to call in Gigan, but his appearance seems almost like an afterthought. The big final battle is fun because of all the teamwork, but Godzilla's flying feet-first kicks are just too hilarious for words! This film seems to have a lower budget, too, with almost no city destruction scenes (except reused ones from other movies), and Megalon's suit is really lacking (although I like his creepy mouth design with the sideways mandibles). Godzilla vs Megalon isn't particularly memorable, but I'm thrilled that I've officially filled the gap in the Godzilla Showa timeline!

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