It was gonna happen sooner or later. There was going to be a classic Godzilla film that just didn’t ring my bell like the rest of the series, and as of this moment, it’s Son of Godzilla. While I enjoy all the monster fighting sequences, and even some of the goofy science outpost plot, the interactions between Godzilla, and his mini-me are just a little too cutesy.
A plane sees Godzilla responding to some strange magnetic waves, and heading towards a remote island. A reporter, Maki (Akira Kubo) follows, parachuting in on the remote island, which the science outpost there has dubbed monster island… there are giant mantis called kamacuras, a giant burrowing spider known as Kumonga, and an egg, which upon opening reveals a baby Godzilla!
The scientists on the island are working on weather experiments, which will, if successful, help feed the world, but the birth of the baby Godzilla, the arrival of Maki, a strange marooned woman, Saeko (Beverly Maeda), and the landfall of Godzilla is going to cause some problems.
The scientists have to work together, alongside Maki and Saeko to find a way off the island, before Kumonga destroys them all. Godzilla and his little cohort begin to bond, as the big guy teaches the little one all the tricks of the trade, and the kamacuras are just damned creepy, and more than a little dangerous, though Kumonga proves to be the real threat to everyone including the Godzillas!
The model work and the monsters are still great, in fact, I quite enjoy those aspects quite a bit, I just didn’t care for the introduction of the little guy. There’s also a lack of the other mythology characters for the series, but it kind of works as a standalone tale, just that little guy annoys me.
There’s definitely a lighter tone to the film, as evidenced by the film’s score, the light-hearted themes at work, as well as some of the goofy expressions that cross Godzilla’s face, which is a compliment to the puppetry work, but still…
And Kumonga, like the other web-spinning, spraying, kaiju we’ve encountered, do it from their mouth… which seems odd. That being said, the web effects are quite nice.
I’m looking forward to seeing what happens in the next film, though I’m also dubious about it, as now that they’ve introduced the son, he’s bound to pop up a couple more times. I guess we’ll find out when it’s time to Destroy All Monsters!
I didn’t hate this one, I loved visiting Monster Island, I just wasn’t a big fan of the silly interactions between Godzilla and the kid. We’ll see if that changes in the remaining films of the Showa era. Stay tuned!