Today we have a guest review from JLA, from JLA's Movie Reviews ,
who was kind enough to grant us a review of Godzilla's Revenge.
So, seeing as this is a guest review, there will be no Zombie-Spidey rating system
Please enjoy, and by all means, check the lad's site out!
Godzilla's Revenge (1969) By: Jordan (jla1987)
Back in the mid to late 60s, Toho got the bright idea to make Godzilla (a creature that consistently causes destruction in Japan with every appearance) into some sort of savior from the other monsters of the galaxy. Well, due to this we got a whole smorgasbord of kiddie Godzilla movies where the big green rubber-suited beast is idolized by little kids. Primary examples of Godzilla vs. Hedorah, Godzilla vs. Megalon, and Godzilla's Revenge come to mind. The concept would have been okay for maybe just one movie, but to make a whole bunch with a similar premise was just goofy. At least Godzilla's Revenge tried to change it up...albeit making it even worse!
Rather than set it all up with detail, here's the premise of this gem!! A little kid, Ichiro, is bullied by typical grade school bullies led by the horrid Gabara on his way home from school. Sound like a Godzilla movie yet? No? Let's continue! The little kid wants to visit Monster Island, the dwelling of Godzilla and his mighty band of monsters. From here, let me allow Wikipedia to provide a rather funny explanation of what Ichiro does next: "After seeing Godzilla attack the docks of Tokyo, to escape his loneliness, Ichiro goes to sleep and dreams about Monster Island, where he befriends Minilla, the son of Godzilla." Get that? Genius, ain't it? If I was a little kid and saw a giant monster destroying a dock in a major Japanese city, I'd shit myself! Hey, whatever floats your boat...
So, now we're on a dream world interpretation of Monster Island. Actually, we start off underneath it, as Ichiro falls into a cavern and lands with the most unspectacular thuds in history (you must see it to believe it, but this is the worst fake fall in history!). Skip a bit, then we meet the greatest piece of the Kaiju universe, Minya! This little oddity is the son of Godzilla, first glimpsed in the equally silly "Son of Godzilla." In Ichiro's dream world, Minya (yes, I know it's Minilla for you purists) can speak (either Japanese or English depending on your viewing preference ;). In reality, the little goofy creature would probably tear Ichiro apart faster than his bully schoolmates. Minya begins his lessons soon after and some stock footage from previous Godzilla movies, Godzilla vs. The Sea Monster in particular, ensues.
Who is the primary monster villain, you might ask? A beast appropriately named Gabara! Please click the link and behold! Hope I didn't scare you too much. So, this monster is conjured up as an analogue to the real world bully counterpart. Guess who monster Gabara terrorizes. No need, since it's Minya of course! I'm sure even with this basic review that I've written, that anyone could guess where this "lesson" is going. Godzilla and Minya are teaching Ichiro to go kick the bully's ass! Perhaps, once again I can let Wikipedia sum it up best...check this out: "To train Minilla, Godzilla makes him fight. Then Ichiro helps Minilla fight back at Gabara and wins through some help of Godzilla. It is through these trips that he learns how to face his fears and fight back. These lessons also grant him the courage to outwit two bumbling bank robbers, as well as have the guts to stand up to Gabara and his gang in a final confrontation." Please note the part about two bumbling bank robbers. WTF were the writers of this movies smoking? It doesn't help that the final battle between the gang of bullies and Ichiro is shot as though it's a psychedelic music video.
In summation, this is the most kiddie-friendly and bizarre Godzilla movie ever made. It provided hours of riffing for me and my friends and I truly must thank the creators of the film for that...but that's the only redeemable quality. Godzilla's Revenge, also titled All Monsters Attack (?), is the worst in the eyes of most Godzilla fans, but in all honesty I find it no worse than the Smog Monster or Megalon. The music of the film, while different for Godzilla, actually stands out to make the movie at little more fun than it actually is. There's no real lesson to be learned other than go beat the hell out of your enemies, which is fine for Godzilla, but less so for a grade schooler. Ugh, as with all bad movies, give this a shot. You won't believe how goofy it is without watching it at least once.
7 hours ago