Newest Book ...

Sunday, March 16, 2014


Finally, after all this time on our big list of movies (seen HERE), we get to the monster rally movie to end them all: Destroy All Monsters (1968).

I'll go first:
After some of the craptastic films we got in 1967, Destroy All Monsters looks like friggin' Gone With The Wind.  
The fact that the Toho Triple Threat is back really, really helps.  Film director Ishiro Honda, composer Akira Ifukube and special effects supervisor Eiji Tsuburaya are just kaiju MVPs, as far as I'm concerned. 
It handles the disparate elements just right.  The human side of things is given just enough weight to keep us interested but not enough to make us bored.  There's some fun tokusatsu scifi model work to add that element but not enough to bore us (the SY-3 rocket is one of the coolest Toho has made ... ever).  And then there's the monster stuff.  Loads of it and most of it is fun to watch. 
For whatever reason, the film is set in the year 1999.  More importantly to the plot, by this time, they've gathered the world's monsters onto Monster Island (aka Monster Land).  Aliens, the Kilaaks, invade and send the monsters around the world to wreak havoc. 
We get some brief scenes of destruction, but I'll make note of one in particular.  Gorosaurus is seen attacking Paris, and he arrives by burrowing under the Arc de Triomphe.  Most definitely not typical Gorosaurus behavior.  As a matter of fact, Paris was supposed to be Baragon's target.  This is backed up by the fact that they used Baragon's roar for Gorosaurus in that scene and a news anchor actually said Baragon was attacking Paris a few moments later.  Baragon's suit was apparently too damaged for use in the big attack scene.  That's why he's barely in the film.  (Same goes for Varan.  I like Varan a bunch, but we only see him briefly a couple of times.)  You can see that the trailer below has Gorosaurus labeled as Baragon, too. 
A real highlight is the attack on Tokyo.  Godzilla, Manda, Mothra and Rodan all go to town, wrecking models while the military launches rocket attacks to the tune of Ifukube's great marches.   
The humans manage to take over the systems the aliens are using to control the monsters and they have them converge near the alien base. Big fun follows as the Kilaaks call on King Ghidorah to protect them against the assembled kaiju forces.  Godzilla, Minya, Rodan, Anguirus, Gorosaurus, Mothra (larva), Kumonga all take active part in the battle, with a few other monsters in the background not really doing anything ... mostly because the suits were being held together with tape.  There are some really fun moments in the fight.  Keep your eye on Godzilla once Ghidorah is down.  It's one of my favorite things to watch Godzilla pick up one of the three limp heads, look at it and shake it furiously and then drop it, disinterested.   
Another oddity, one guy rips mind-control earrings out of a woman's ears, leaving her a bloody whimpering mess on the floor.  Yeah, aliens were controlling her mind, but, dude.  You didn't have to wreck her lobes. 
(Gareth Edwards, director of the upcoming Godzilla film, has said that Destroy All Monsters is one of his favorites and he hopes to base a sequel to his Godzilla film on it.) 
Destroy All Monsters ... Godzilla films at their most fun.  4.5 out of five atomic breath blasts.
Here's my son's take:
Well in my top three Godzilla movies this one is #2 because 11 monster V.S. 1 monster , King Ghidorah! Baragon was replaced by Gorosaurus, but Goro has a kangaroo kick. It was a awesome fight. Also,these are one of the many movies where new york is assaulted, I mean, come on! New York is awesome!!!! 
so, rating wise, i'll say 4.99999977769 out of 5 Atomic Breaths of Awesomeness!
Here's the trailer:

Up next, the return of the turtle ... Gamera vs. Viras.

No comments:

Post a Comment