Mothra Vs. Godzilla/Review
From The Grindhouse Cinema Database
When a typhoon hits Japan, a huge egg falls out of a mountain and into the ocean. It is later found on the shore of a beach near Tokyo. Soon the media and scientists are swarming. This is where we meet the main characters of the film: A news reporter named Mr Sakai (Akira Takarada), his news photographer Yoka Nakanishi (Yuriko Hoshi), and the two business moguls, Mr Kumayama (Yoshifumi Tajima) and Banzo Torahata (Kenji Sahara). While looking around the large site, Yoka spots a strange green object on the shore. Sakai feels she should be taking photos of the egg, not the green object. It is never stated in the film what the object is, but on the DVD commentary track, Ed Godzisewski and Steve Ryfle observe that its most likely a large scale from Godzilla's skin.
After the people are done looking at the large egg it is moved to an enormous glass incubator where it is guarded and observed. Sakai meets up with Professor Miura (Hiroshi Koizumi) to get some information on the egg's origins. Meanwhile, Mr Kumayama and Mr Torahata are making plans to turn the egg into a money making scheme. The two business partners are soon interrupted by some strange noises calling out to them to "return the egg". Enter the Twin Fairies of Infant Island (played by real life twins Emi & Yumi Ito aka the pop singers "The Peanuts"). The businessmen can't believe their eyes but they quickly trap the fairies and put them in a box for safe keeping.
While surveying the typhoon's messy aftermath, Sakai and Yoka are startled by a large noise and rumble of the earth. Slowly they see the ground break apart and you guessed it, the gargantuan creature known as Godzilla erupts out of his slumber. We can only guess that Godzilla washed ashore during the typhoon and was buried deep beneath the rubble and sand caused by the typhoon. Well, now its time for ol' Godzilla to begin his attack on the city and he does. This is our first viewing of the incredibly well made special FX as they come into play. The Godzilla suit looks amazing and the Toho scale miniatures are very realistic. We soon learn that Godzilla's main target is the large egg and nothing will stop him from destroying it!...
Sakai & Yoka (who now have the twin fairies in their possession) are taken to Infant Island. There they meet with the island chief and after some pleading, they are lead to Mothra's lair by the twin fairies themselves (some great FX process shots in this sequence). The Infant Island people help the Japanese people by showing them that everyone is the same when it comes to war (a common theme in Ishirô Honda's films). Mothra attacks the deadly Godzilla and its a very action packed and nicely executed battle sequence. Mothra does its best to bring Godzilla down but she is soon taken out. She manages to get to the large egg and protect it with her wings.
Not only does Godzilla fight Mothra (who he kills), the American Allied Forces bring in their tanks and try to get Godzilla but it doesn't quite work. Soon after Mothra's death, we get another surprise when the large egg hatches and we see not just one but TWO caterpillars emerge. The fighting continues as the Twin Caterpillars go up against Godzilla in all out destructo match. The silk threads and fire breath flies everywhere! Its a true show stopper!!
The effects in Mothra Vs. Godzilla are certainly some of the very best of all the early Godzilla films. Another nicely worked out aspect was the English dubbing. The American voiceover artists created a faux Japanese accent to make a better result for English audiences. After all, you can't have a Japanese man speaking with a Brooklyn accent right? Mothra Vs. Godzilla is a true classic of the kaiju genre. This film gets my highest recommendation!!
Peter Roberts is the co-founder/editor-in-chief of the Grindhouse Cinema Database (GCDb) and contributor to the GCDb's sister site Furious Cinema. A Massachusetts native, he is an avid film fan that has been immersed in the world of entertainment and pop culture his entire life. He is currently majoring in Communications and Interactive Media Design.