Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla, released in Japan as Godzilla × Mechagodzilla (ゴジラ×メカゴジラ Gojira tai Mekagojira) is a 2002 Japanese science fiction kaiju film directed by Masaaki Tezuka, written by Wataru Mimura, and produced by Toho Co., Ltd. It is the 26th installment in the Godzilla franchise and the fourth film to feature Mechagodzilla. Unlike much of the Millennium Series, the film takes place in continuity with other Toho films, notably Godzilla, Mothra, War of the Gargantuas, Space Amoeba and its successor, Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S.
Summary[edit | edit source]
After the appearance of a new Godzilla, the Japanese government builds a robotic Godzilla from the bones of the original monster that attacked Tokyo in 1954 to stop the beast.
Cast[edit | edit source]
- Yumiko Shaku as JXSDF Lt. Akane Yashiro
- Shin Takuma as Tokumitsu Yuhara
- Kana Onodera as Sara Yuhara
- Kou Takasugi as JXSDF Colonel Togashi
- Akira Nakao as Prime Minister Hayato Igarashi
- Yūsuke Tomoi as JXSDF 2nd Lieutenant Susumu Hayama
- Junichi Mizuno as JXSDF 1st Lieutenant Kenji Sekine
- Kumi Mizuno as Prime Minister Machiko Tsuge
- Yoshikazu Kanō as Hishinuma
- Takeo Nakahara as JXSDF Chief Ichiyanagi
- Kōichi Ueda as Dobashi
- Midori Hagio as Kaori Yamada
- Akira Shirai as Shinji Akamatsu
- Naomasa Rokudaira as Dr. Gorō Kanno
- Shinji Morisue as JXSDF 1st Lieutenant
- Hideki “Godzilla” Matsui as Himself
- Tsutomu Kitagawa as Godzilla, the King of the Monsters and the primary antagonist.
- Hirofumi Ishigaki as Kiryu, a cyborg built around the bones of the first Godzilla that attacked Japan in 1954.
Production[edit | edit source]
- Mechagodzilla is mostly referred to as Kiryu (meaning "Machine Dragon") throughout this film and the next. This was done to differentiate the character from previous versions.
- Japanese Baseball star Hideki Matsui has a cameo as himself in the film, due to his nickname "Godzilla".
- As has been done since the early 1970s, Toho had the international version of Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla dubbed in Hong Kong. This dubbed version was released on DVD by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment in 2004.
Box office[edit | edit source]
Budgeted at roughly $8,500,000, Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla opened in Japan on December 13, 2002, and earned $2,253,231 in its opening weekend. It went on to gross approximately $16,000,000 in Japan, making it the second biggest hit of the Millennium Godzilla films at the box office. It sold approximately 1,700,000 admissions.
Critical reaction[edit | edit source]
Reviews of Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla have been positive. Mike Pinsky of DVD Talk gave the film three stars out of five, saying: "While I did have some minor complaints, [this is] a fine entry in the series." Pinsky said "the plot is more interesting than most giant monster movies," and "the battle scenes, which are the main reason anyone watches these films to begin with, were great." Giving the film a "B+" score, Mark Zimmer of Digitally Obsessed said that it's "a good deal of fun and one of the better entries in the series." Digital Monster Island gave the film a "B" score, calling it "a fun and exciting film that should please most kaiju fans."
DVD[edit | edit source]
Sony Pictures - R1 America - Columbia Tristar Home Entertainment
- Released: March 23, 2004
- Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 (Anamorphic) [NTSC]
- Soundtrack(s): Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1) English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
- Subtitles: English (Dubtitles) and French
- Extras: Trailers: "The Medallion", "Returner", "Tokyo Godfathers" and "Tube"
- Case Type: Keep Case
- Notes: American Title - "Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla" "International Version" 88:29 mins, English opening and closing credits (otherwise same as the original Japanese version)
Motion picture rating[edit | edit source]
Rated PG for sci-fi action and some language
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- Famed Japanese baseball player Hideki Matsui, a member of the New York Yankees from 2003 to 2010 and a member of the Los Angeles Angels since 2010, appears as himself. He hits a massive home run as Kiryu is flown toward Godzilla for the first time and helps a group of children get to a safe place during the sequence when Shinagawa's population is evacuated to make room for the fighting monsters. Matsui's nickname in Japan is Godzilla.
- Mechagodzilla's nickname is Kiryu, which means machine dragon or mechanized dragon.
- In Dr. Yuhara's first scene, he is showcasing a mechanical Trilobite and then is asked to help construct Kiryu from the first Godzilla's bones not long after. In the original Godzilla a Trilobite was discovered in the first Godzilla's footprints.
- Like the other films in Toho's Millennium Series, this was intended to be a standalone film. After production had completed, director Masaaki Tezuka approached producer Shogo Tomiyama with the idea for a sequel. It was filmed the next year as Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. Contrary to popular belief, a second sequel was never intended.
- All the Japanese Self Defense Force (JSDF) Ground Forces Soldiers and Officers are wearing U.S. Army Ribbon Awards.
- Takehiro Murata: Man picking up cans. Murata has had roles in numerous Godzilla films, including the lead role in Godzilla 2000.
- Masaaki Tezuka: The maintenance worker who walks past Akane in the scene following the end credits.