Friday, April 28, 2017

The Doom Of Godzilla!

The Heisei era of Godzilla movies comes to an end as it properly must with the demise of the great and powerful Godzilla himself. While we all know he is immortal, the story which had been brewing throughout these films comes to a head at last in 1995's Godzilla Vs. Destoroyah.

The story begins when the world realizes that Godzilla is about to blow up. Since Godzilla is powered by radiation, his impending demise begins when he shows up in Hong Kong literally leaking radiation from oozing wounds on his hide. He has taken in too much radiation and now it must be released and that is a deadly situation not only for Godzilla but the world. Meanwhile the long venerated Oxygen Destroyer which brought down Godzilla in his debut misadventure infects a colony of sea creatures and they mutate to become a creature named "Destoroyah". A scheme is hatched by psychic Miki Saegusa to use Godzilla Junior to lure Godzilla into the clutches of Destoroyah to end both threats and that results in the death of Godzilla Junior. Godzilla then attacks Destoroyah with a vengeance and their battle is a rugged on which eventually results in the death of both creatures. But the released radiation from the battle reinvigorates Godzilla Junior who at long last matures into a full-sized replica of his awesome parent.

And so comes to an end this epic series of movies. They alas fall short in many respects, but are to be applauded for attempting to tell a tale over the course of several films which does in most respects hang together. The movies are more interesting in their sum than in their individual expression, but that's not uncommon. The weakness some of these movies have is one of tone. Some have a truly serious tone, some more light-hearted and that mismatch hurts the effectiveness of the series. Godzilla Junior is a regrettable creation in many ways, and reminds me way too much of the lamentable "Godzooky" from the above average Godzilla cartoon show.

When Godzilla returns he will take on NYC and Matthew Broderick in a movie which most Godzilla fans have come to regard with general disdain. While I enjoy it, it's clear upon seeing this series of legit Godzilla movies why the American Godzilla falls short despite many virtues.

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