Terror of Mechagodzilla is the final entry in the original Godzilla series. The Godzilla series is generally separated into three sections. First there is the Showa series. In Japan years are calculated by the reign of the Emperor. Showa stands for Emperor Hirohito. So, each film in the Showa series was made during that reign. Next, is the Heisei series. This series covers years 1984-1995. Finally, there is the Millenium series.
Being the end of the original series, Terror of Mechagodzilla is, for me, kind of a letdown. It is not the worst of the series, but it’s incredibly mediocre.
Aliens return and rebuild Mechagodzilla. I’m not sure if these aliens are supposed to be the same aliens from the last movie (they never turn into apes, and wear really dumb looking helmets), or if they are a new group of aliens. They are joined by a human scientist, who is angry because he has been rejected by the greater scientific community for his unorthodox experiments.
As any angry scientist is wont to do, he creates a giant sea monster to destroy cities named Titanosaurus. Interpol agents work to stop him and the aliens from destroying everything. Finally, Godzilla comes to help but he finds himself fighting both a new and improved Mechagodzilla, and Titanosaurus. Has Godzilla bitten off more than he can chew?
Not only is this the last of the Showa series, it is the final movie directed by Ishiro Honda. He had directed the first Godzilla and a total of 8 of the movies. This is rather sad because Terror of Mechagodzilla only sold 970,000 tickets, making it the lowest selling Godzilla movie of the series. Because of it’s major underperformance, and the energy crisis of the 1970s the Godzilla franchise would be put on hold for 10 years.
In one cool scene, Godzilla charges Mechagodzilla as the robot releases all of its ordinances on Earth’s great green protector. In the cacophony of explosions, the back of the Godzilla suit accidentally caught fire. It ended up looking really good, so they kept it in the final cut of the film.
Overall, this is a rather disappointing film. It is really only worth watching if you want to see it just because it’s the final entry in the Showa series.
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