A scene from GODZILLA AGAINST MECHAGODZILLA, directed by Tezuka Masaaki for Toho Company Ltd.

Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla (2002, Tezuka Masaaki)

Even for a movie about a giant man-made robot fighting a giant monster, Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla is pretty stupid. The robot was this amazing weapon, capable of destroying Godzilla, yet its pilot always waits to use it. Obviously, there wouldn’t be a movie if she used it right away… but Against never explains why everyone’s so dumb. It would have helped.

Sadly, this particular stupidity is indicative of the rest of the picture’s stupidity. Mimura Wataru’s script is absolutely atrocious. Against doesn’t even run ninety minutes and it probably needs at least another half hour. I’m not sure more time would have made it better–not with Mimura writing it–but there’s no depth to the characters or the setting. More of lead Shaku Yumiko (the pilot) or Onodera Kana (the obnoxious little girl who wins Shaku’s heart) would be awful, but some explanation of events would help a lot.

Instead of actual plot development, Mimura and director Tezuka actually have a scene where two characters sit and recount forty-some years of history to each other, even though they both know it. It’s possibly the worst expository scene I’ve ever seen.

Other serious drawbacks into Ohshima Michiru’s score. He seems to think Against is a feel good soccer movie or something. It’s actually worse than the script. I didn’t know a bad score could be worse than a bad script, but now I do.

Tezuka occasionally has some good ideas and the effects are decent, but Against’s dreadful.



Directed by Tezuka Masaaki; written by Mimura Wataru; director of photography, Kishimoto Masahiro; edited by Fushima Shinichi and Natori Shinichi; music by Ohshima Michiru; production designer, Miike Toshio; produced by Tomiyama Shogo; released by Toho Company, Ltd.

Starring Shaku Yumiko (Yashiro Akane), Takuma Shin (Yuhara Tokumitsu), Onodera Kana (Yuhara Sara), Takasugi Kô (JSDF Lieutenant Togashi), Tomoi Yûsuke (JSDF 2nd Lieutenant Hayama), Mizuno Jun’ichi (JSDF 1st Lieutenant Sekine), Nakao Akira (Prime Minister Igarashi), Mizuno Kumi (1999 Prime Minister Tsuge), Nakahara Takeo (JSDF Chief Hitoyanagi), Kanou Yoshikazu (Hishinuma) and Matsui Hideki (Godzilla).


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