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Godzilla Review: Godzilla vs Destroyah!

Illustration for article titled Godzilla Review: Godzilla vs Destroyah!

Alternative title: How I Made LittleBoots Cry.

I really should have thought the decision to watch this one with my 5 year old over some more. I'm not sure MrsBoots will ever forgive me for the anguish I caused.


Godzilla vs Destroyah is the final installment in the Heisei run of Godzilla movies. It was the final Godzilla film released by Toho before they gave way to ever popular 1998 American Zilla flick.

A direct sequel to the '96 Godzilla vs Space Godzilla, the movie begins with with researchers checking up on Godzilla and his son, Godzilla Junior (they spared no expense on coming up with his name). What they find only leads to more questions, as Godzilla is covered in glowing red-orange legions that appear to be smoking. His trademark spines also share this same orange glow. Eager to discover what is exactly going on with Godzilla, the Japan Self Defense Forces eventually conclude that Godzilla's heart, pretty much a nuclear reactor by this point, is going into meltdown. They have to stop Godzilla's temperature from reaching 1,200 degrees or else he'll explode, reducing himself, Godzilla Junior, and much of the world into a fine brown mist.


In the meantime, scientists from all over Japan are arguing over the invention of micro-oxygen, something very similar to the oxygen destroyer used to kill the original Godzilla in 1954. The JSDF decide that they have no choice but to use this same invention to kill Godzilla once again before he explodes.

And here's where things begin going downhill for LittleBoots.

Before they can build the device, the scientists discover that some pre-Cambrian creatures hidden in the soil had been mutated by the original oxygen destroyer deployed to kill the original Godzilla. These mutated crab- like things quickly grow to the size of a station wagon and infiltrate a random building. Military police are sent in to clear them out.


This turns out to be a rather horrible idea, as the movie takes a quick dip into horror movie territory and the creatures begin attacking from the walls and wiping out the MP. It doesn't go into full Alien gristly death scenes or anything, but it was unnerving enough to send my daughter running screaming from the room. I had to call her back in when the scary scene was over. Great parenting, Jolly.

As it turns out, I should have probably just left her in the other room.

The creatures continue to grow in size and leave the building, taking out more people in the process. We get a lovely scene that had to be a tribute to Alien with one of the creatures attacking a woman in a car, and a second tiny mouth jutting out and stopping just inches from her face. She's rescued at the last moment, but I'm pretty sure LittleBoots is already scarred for life. My parenting skills know no bounds, apparently.


Elsewhere, the JSDF has come up with the Super X-3, an aircraft with freeze weapons that may be able to stop Godzilla's rampage without setting off the world-shattering kaboom. LittleBoots is happy we're back to Godzilla. Yay! Maybe this isn't a total wash yet. The Super X-3 launches its attack on big G. It's unable to kill him, but the freeze technology keeps him down and out for a few hours. His temperature drops significantly, and all seems well even after he begins moving again.

Back at the killer shellfish monsters, the military has had no luck stopping them thus far. They decide to use the micro oxygen on the creatures, because the best thing to use on creatures that humanity has mutated with their weapons are more of the same weapons, apparently. Like how the best way to put out a fire is to throw more gasoline on it.


With Godzilla's temperature once again on the rise, the JSDF comes up with a desperate plan to lure him into battle with the newly dubbed Destroyah, the result of all the little creatures mutating into one giant creature. the hope is that since Destroyah was borne of the same device that killed the original Godzilla, Godzilla will be unable to defeat the creature. They lure Godzilla Junior into fighting Destroyah, knowing his poppa is following his trail.

GJ puts up a good fight, and seemingly kills Destroyah by throwing him into an power plant. He heads off to meet his dad in a pretty heartwarming reunion. Which is over very suddenly when Destroyah reappears, and kills Godzilla Junior. Shit, this is going over worse than freaking Bambi. LittleBoots is in tears, Mrsboots is attempting to calm her down all while shooting me the glare, and I'm trying to count all the ways this doesn't make me the world's worst parent.


Well, as one might guess, the big G isn't overly happy with this new development either. One of the best fights in Godzilla history happens. Both monsters inflict some serious freaking wounds on one another. Destroyah eventually retreats from the barrage.

Godzilla goes over to the fallen Junior, and attempts to revive him. He fails. Dammit, cm'on Toho, cut me some slack here. At this point, I'm considering where I could run where MrsBoots can't find me (nowhere; like Phil Collins, there is nowhere I could hide that MrsBoots couldn't find me) . Godzilla begins to go into meltdown, but Destroyah again appears. Dear gods above, doesn't this thing ever die?!


Of course it does. Godzilla hits it with multiple super blasts of his radiation breath, and blows Destroyah nearly to pieces. Destroyah attempts once more to escape, but the JSDF intervenes and hits him with the X-3 freeze weapons. Destroyah disintegrates upon hitting the ground. Godzilla at this point begins to melt like the last gremlin in Gremlins. Dammit, why didn't I shut this movie off an hour ago?

LittleBoots goes into a meltdown of her own upon seeing this. I'm planning my new life as a fugitive on the road. The JSDF is afraid Tokyo is doomed to radiation poisoning. But wait! All the radioactivity in the area suddenly begins to plummet! In the clouds of dust now swirling from the massive battle, Godzilla Junior is spotted moving again. He's absorbed all the energy of his father, and is now a full grown Godzilla in his own right. The movie ends with a short montage of scenes from the original Godzilla movie, and the credits roll.


Overall, Godzilla Junior coming back to life may have saved my own. But it may be a while before forgiveness is rendered. I'm going to have a hell of a time convincing Mrsboots to let LittleBoots watch Godzilla vs King Kong when it arrives, though.

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