SPARKY vacations on Monster Island
|Godzilla vs. Megaguirus|
|Directed by||Masaaki Tezuka|
|Produced by||Shogo Tomiyama|
|Written by||Wataru Mimura |
|Starring||Misato Tanaka |
|Music by||Michiru Oshima|
|Editing by||Yoshiyuki Okuhara|
|Distributed by||Toho |
|Released||November 3, 2000|
|Running time||105 min.|
The twenty-fourth of Toho Studios' Godzilla series, Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (???×????? G???? - "Godzilla x Megaguirus: G Extermination Command") was the second and last of the Shinsei Series to feature an original daikaiju, Megaguirus. It was the first of three Godzilla films directed by Masaaki Tezuka and the last of two with special effects by Kenji Suzuki. It debuted at the Tokyo International Film Festival on December 3, the 46th anniversary of the release of the original Godzilla. Like other Shinsei Series entries, Godzilla vs. Megaguirus ignores previous film continuity: in its universe, Godzilla has previously appeared only in Godzilla, Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster, and Godzilla vs. Destoroyah. Additionally, it features minor kaiju seen previously only in Rodan (1956).
An experimental weapon that fires miniature black holes, called the Dimension Tide, opens a wormhole and through which a giant prehistoric dragonfly enters the present. It deposits a single egg and before exiting through the wormhole. A boy finds the egg and takes it with him when he moves to Tokyo. The egg starts oozing a strange liquid, so the boy throws the egg in the sewer. The egg, actually a mass of hundreds of eggs, splits up and starts growing. The eggs hatch into giant dragonfly nymphs called Meganurons that come out of the sewer to feed. They flood a portion of the city and moult on the sides of buildings, becoming adult Meganuera.
The swarm of Meganuera attack Godzilla, who is in battle with the G-Graspers, the anti-Godzilla section of the JSDF. Most Meganuera are killed, but a few drain some of Godzilla's blood and return to the sewer. With the last of their strength, the Meganuera inject Godzilla's blood into a huge, sleeping nymph. It molts and appears from the water as Megaguirus, the huge Meganuera queen.
After destroying part of the city with shock waves generated by her beating wings, Megaguirus heads to the waterfront and faces Godzilla. Being territorial, Megaguirus considers the city to be her hunting ground. She uses her speed to avoid Godzilla's attacks, but Godzilla eventually uses her speed against her. As she flies toward Godzilla, he lunges forward with his dorsal spines in her path. She flies into the spines, and one of her arms is severed.
During the battle, a special ability of Megaguirus is revealed: Having grown on blood from Godzilla, she can generate a blast similar to his atomic ray. She fires a huge ball of radiation, knocking Godzilla down. He gets back up, and Megaguirus goes in for the kill. She speeds forward with the stinger on her long tail lowered, trying to stab Godzilla between the eyes. But Godzilla catches the stinger in his mouth! He bites down, crushing the stinger. Megaguirus rears up in pain, and Godzilla takes the chance to finally blast her with his atomic ray. She bursts into flame, and after being hit a second time falls to the ground and explodes, ending her savage life.
The cast of Godzilla vs. Megaguirus are predominantly new faces to kaiju eiga, but the film began a tradition in the Shinsei Series of casting veteran genre cast members, especially from the Sh?wa era, in older, authoritarian roles: Yuriko Hoshi, who played photographer Junko in Mothra vs. Godzilla and reporter Naoko in Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, cameos as Professor Yoshizawa, director of the Dimension Tide project.
- Misato Tanaka - Kiriko Tsujimori
- Shosuke Tanihara - Hajime Kudo
- Masat? Ibu - Motohiko Sugiura
- Yuriko Hoshi - Prof. Yoshino Yoshizawa
- Toshiyuki Nagashima - Takuji Miyagawa
- Tsutomu Kitagawa - Godzilla
- Minoru Watanabe - Megaguirus
- Godzilla vs. Megaguirus movie review
- Tokyo Monsters.com - The Kaiju Eiga Multimedia Resource
- Amazon.com: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000): DVD
Monsterland / Monster Island
Monsterland (Destroy All Monsters, 1968)
Monsterland was introduced in the 1968 film Destroy All Monsters. The United Nations had decided to gather all the Earth's daikaiju (giant monsters) and corral them into a single location, then keep them there. The Ogasawara Islands were chosen for the project and by 1999, Godzilla, Rodan, Mothra, Anguirus, Gorosaurus, Kumonga, Minya, Baragon, Manda, and Varan were all residents of Monsterland. Various security devices were installed on the island to make sure the daikaiju wouldn't escape. Among the various devices were machines that sprayed different types of mist that Godzilla and Mothra shied away from, as well as a magnetic wall that prevented Rodan from flying away.
All was well until the Kilaaks invaded, taking control of Monsterland and loosing the monsters upon the world. After the Kilaaks were foiled, the monsters returned to Monsterland and have been living there since.
Monster Island first showed up in 1969's All Monsters Attack, in the dreams of a young boy named Ichiro. He dreamt of befriending Minya and watching him and Godzilla battle other monsters. In Ichiro's dream, the daikaiju living on Monster Island included Godzilla, Minya, Gabara, Kamacuras, Kumonga, Ebirah, Anguirus, Gorosaurus, Manda, the giant condor from Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster, and Rodan (mentioned but unseen). This is, however, just a boy's daydream; the island is likely his own creation, the residents simply his favorite daikaiju.
Monster Island is revealed to be an actual island in Godzilla vs. Gigan (1972). Godzilla, Rodan, Mothra, Anguirus, Minya, Gorosaurus, Kumonga, and Kamacuras all live there, though the island lacks the security devices that Monsterland possessed, and Godzilla and Anguirus are able to leave at will. Monster Island appeared again in Godzilla vs. Megalon (1973), one of many locations suffering the effects of nuclear testing. This is seen to disturb Godzilla, Rodan, and Anguirus; as they try to escape the explosions, Anguirus falls into a crevasse in the ground. In Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla (1974), after Godzilla loses his initial fight against Mechagodzilla, we see him resting and recuperating on a beach during a thunderstorm. This locale may also be Monster Island.
Godzilla heals after his fight with Mechagodzilla (Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla, 1974).
Monsterland, Monster Island, and ContinuityThough chronologically Monster Island predates Monsterland, fans are unsure exactly when the island comes into existence. It has clearly existed and been named for some time by 1972. However, nothing daikaiju-related happened (that is, no daikaiju eiga took place) between 1967 and 1971 (Destroy All Monsters took place 1999 while the monster scenes from All Monsters Attack were dreamt). In 1971 Godzilla simply appears to fight Hedorah (Godzilla vs. Hedorah); he could very well have come from Monster Island.
That said, the following had to have happened between 1967 and 1972:
- Godzilla and Minya thaw out from the snowstorm at the end of Son of Godzilla (1967).
- Anguirus, Gorosaurus, Kumonga, and Kamacuras, all presumed dead, reappear very much alive.
- Mothra (in her then-current form) decides to leave Infant Island.
- All of the aforementioned daikaiju, plus Rodan, decide to take up residence on the same island.
This raises some questions. Why, or how, did Mothra leave Infant Island? The island had been her home for eons, why leave? Did she leave on her own, or was she moved by the U.N.? Secondly, where were the shobijin? Did they have any say in Mothra's relocation?
How did Monster Island come about? Were the daikaiju corralled to the island by humanity, or did the monsters go there of their own volition? Perhaps that is what happened: the daikaiju moved to Monster Island, and the U.N. installed the security devices as soon as they could. It couldn't have been too soon, though, as Godzilla and Anguirus obviously had no trouble leaving the island, and did so many times.
Also, at what point were Baragon, Manda, and Varan added to the island's roster? Though, as stated above, Manda is "seen" on Monster Island by Ichiro, none of them are on the island in reality in 1972, and most likely not by 1975, either. So their arrival on Monster Island had to have taken place between then and 1999.
Also, could Monster Island and Monsterland be different locations? Godzilla vs. Megalon makes reference to "far away Monster Island in the South Pacific", while in Destroy All Monsters a reporter in Tokyo claims that "Monsterland is close by". If this is the case, how did the kaiju get from one island to the other?
The Bottom Line
Ultimately, it comes down to the writers. They obviously liked the idea of all the monsters living on the same island from Destroy All Monsters, and proceeded to use it in the following films, trying to work around the fact that it didn't show up until 1999 (changing the name to "Monster Island" in the process). The fact that Godzilla was laying around on Monster Island, ready and waiting to face off against each new challenge, was cheap and convenient for the under-budgeted 1970s films. Indeed, both Mechagodzilla films, Godzilla simply pops up inexplicably to battle adversaries.
Monster Island in Godzilla: The Series
Another version of Monster Island existed in Godzilla: The Series, the continuation of the 1998 film Godzilla. This island was originally the base of operations for the Tachyon aliens, as proposed by Major Hicks. This island eventually became home to Crustaceous Rex, King Cobra, the Giant Bat, Skeetera, and Shrewster. Godzilla also visited the island occasionally, though because he travelled with H.E.A.T. he never became a permanent resident. Large, cage-like apparatuses were installed on the island to keep the daikaiju isolated from each other, and they remain on Monster Island to this day, though they have suffered a few casualties.
In an alternate timeline, Monster Island fell under siege by the invincible Dragma creatures, and every daikaiju there (including Godzilla, who fought to protect a large number of humans and given a hero's commemoration via a statue) was slaughtered by their might.
Several references to "Monster Island" are likely based on this element from the Godzilla series.
- The Simpsons: In the episode "Lisa On Ice", Lisa imagines being sentenced to Monster Island for failing Physical Education. The judge informs her that the term "Monster Island" is just a name, but Lisa discovers that the island is in fact the home of several daikaiju. Fleeing from the giant creatures, Lisa is informed by one of her fellow inmates that what the judge meant was that Monster Island is in fact a peninsula.
- The Monsta Island Czars are a hip-hop group from New York City, most of whose individual names are parodies of daikaiju names.
It's bedtime for Sparky - byes