Godzilla Final Wars (2004)

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Godzilla Final Wars soundtrack

Godzilla films
Godzilla: Tokyo SOS
Godzilla Final Wars
Godzilla (2014)
Godzilla Final Wars
The Japanese poster for Godzilla Final Wars
Directed by Ryuhei Kitamura
Producer Shogo Tomiyama et al.
Written by Wataru Mimura, Isao Kiriyama
Music by Keith Emerson, Nobuhiko Morino, Daisuke Yano, Akira Ifukube
effects by
Eiichi Asada
Production company Toho Pictures
Distributor TohoJP, TriStar PicturesUS
Rating PG-13US
Budget ¥1.9 billion[1]
Box office ¥1.2 billion[2]
Running time 125 minutes
(2 hours, 5 minutes)
Aspect ratio 2.35:1
Rate this film!
(170 votes)

Farewell, Godzilla. (さらば、ゴジラ。)

— Tagline

Earth: Out-numbered, Out-monstered, Out-done.

— American home video tagline

Godzilla Final Wars (ゴジラ FINAL (ファイナル) WARS (ウォーズ),   Gojira Fainaru Wōzu) is a 2004 tokusatsu kaiju film directed by Ryuhei Kitamura and written by Wataru Mimura and Isao Kiriyama, with special effects by Eiichi Asada. Produced by Toho Pictures, it is the 28th mainline installment in the Godzilla series and the 29th Godzilla film overall, as well as the sixth and final in the Millennium series. It stars Masahiro Matsuoka, Rei Kikukawa, Don Frye, Maki Mizuno, Kazuki Kitamura, Kane Kosugi, Akira Takarada, Jun Kunimura, Kumi Mizuno, and Kenji Sahara. The film was released to Japanese theaters by Toho on December 4, 2004[3], after premiering at the Egyptian Theater in Los Angeles on November 29. Following limited public theatrical screenings in the United States in 2005, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment released it on DVD on December 13, 2005.

The final Godzilla film for a period of 10 years, Final Wars commemorates the 50th anniversary of the franchise, featuring the most kaiju in any Godzilla film to date. In the year 20XX, monsters have suddenly begun attacking major cities around the globe. An alien force known as the Xiliens teleports the monsters away and claims to have come to save the human race. However, members of the Earth Defense Force learn that the Xiliens are really trying to infiltrate positions of power in human society. The EDF exposes their plan, leading the evil Controller of Planet X to unleash all of the monsters against humanity once more. Mankind's last hope lies with a few remaining EDF soldiers, who use the warship Gotengo to free Godzilla from his prison in Antarctica so he can defeat the Xiliens' legion of kaiju all by himself.

Toho retired the Godzilla series following the release of Godzilla Final Wars, a decision made in advance of its poor box office performance, but Godzilla vs. Hedorah director Yoshimitsu Banno secured permission to produce an IMAX short film titled Godzilla 3-D in the meantime. His search for funding eventually led to Hollywood studio Legendary Pictures securing the rights to produce a new film, simply titled Godzilla, in 2014. Legendary's film began a franchise known as the Monsterverse, while Toho would ultimately produce the next mainline Godzilla film, Shin Godzilla, in 2016.


Extensive warfare, nuclear testing and careless science had mutated or awakened great beasts of all sorts.[4] During that period, the frequent occurrence of enormous monsters had become commonplace, and thus, the Earth Defense Force (known as the EDF for short) was established by the nations of the world. The sole purpose of the force was to combat the monsters and hopefully restore peace to the world. During the worldwide wave of monsters, mutant humans with superhuman strength and extraordinary physical capabilities were discovered whose origins or mutations were not yet understood. The EDF realized the potential and effectiveness of the mutants as super soldiers, and established a subdivision known as the M-Organization. Utilizing the mutants' handy physical feats and superior piloting skills, along with the military's best war machines, the threat was slowly subdued and the monsters were slowly, but surely, defeated.

In 1954, the greatest enemy that the EDF ever faced, Godzilla, first appeared and frequently menaced mankind over the years. While the EDF succeeded in defeating the other monsters, it could never overcome Godzilla. Eventually, the EDF engaged Godzilla in a final showdown in Antarctica, pitting its Type 90 Maser Cannons and advanced warship the Gotengo against the monster. Godzilla easily destroyed the Maser Cannons and downed the Gotengo with his atomic breath. It was only with the help of a large earthquake that the crew of the Gotengo was able to finally triumph against Godzilla. The earthquake had caused the ground to split and cave-in beneath Godzilla, causing him to fall into a seemingly bottomless pit. This was followed immediately by an avalanche of ice and rock caused by missiles fired from the Gotengo that buried Godzilla and imprisoned him in an icy tomb.

Decades later, in the year 20XX, peace has been recognized worldwide with the exception of very rare monster attacks. The EDF had easily defeated such threats, and the monster-scare had become a thing of the past. During this time, a mysterious mummified monster is found off the coast of Hokkaido and is being suspended by large support cables in the EDF warehouse/hangar, where it is being researched. It is calculated at being 12,000 years old and composed of organic and machine tissue, making it a cyborg. It is also discovered that the monster's DNA contains M Base, which is also found in Earth's mutant soldiers. The two Shobijin twins reveal the creature's name to be Gigan, an evil monster from space that was sent to wipe out life on Earth, but was subdued by Mothra. They give the mutant, Shinichi Ozaki, a small sword, saying that he has an important destiny and that he must choose his fate.

Suddenly, a large group of monsters appear simultaneously and attack major cities all over the world. The EDF is dispatched and valiantly attempts to defeat the monsters. Rodan attacks New York City, Zilla attacks Sydney, Anguirus attacks Shanghai, King Caesar attacks Okinawa, Kamacuras attacks Paris, Kumonga attacks Phoenix, Arizona, and Ebirah attacks Tokai.

During the international devastation, an alien race known as the Xiliens appears and captures the monsters, after which they propose a peaceful union with mankind. They reveal that an asteroid called Gorath is going to collide with Earth unless all weapons are aimed at it. The Secretary, who was considered dead when Rodan attacked his plane, begins to pursue a new future with the Xiliens, claiming that the United Nations would become the Space Nations. However, distrust of the Xiliens begins to arise. When the Secretary is attacked during an attempted assassination, his blood is analyzed and soon found to not be human. Worse, the image of Gorath displayed by the Xiliens turns out to be nothing more than a hologram. Ozaki fears that the Xiliens are plotting a takeover of Earth, and that many of their leaders could have been compromised. He can only trust one man, Captain Gordon, the one who originally fired the missiles that contained Godzilla.

Doctor Miyuki Otanashi goes looking through the files of the Secretary, but is caught by the EDF leader. However, Gordon comes in at the last moment and shoots the EDF leader, revealing him to be an impostor. They bring the corpse of the impostor to the broadcast studio, where the Xiliens are being interviewed on live television. The Secretary is shot, revealing him to also be an impostor. The second-in-command of the Xiliens, known as the Controller, shoots his Commander, tired of the slow plans of a peaceful takeover. Using his species' control over M Base, he takes control of the mutants, excluding Ozaki, and releases the monsters to resume their attacks on the cities. He also sends out an army of small fighter ships to assist in leveling and decimating human civilization. M-Unit commander Muasaka holds off his former command while the others escape. However, their escape is hindered by Kazama, a fellow mutant, who Ozaki is able to subdue.

In a secret hanger, the Gotengo crew sets out on a risky, last resort plan to defeat the Xiliens by releasing Godzilla from Area G. The Controller unleashes Gigan to follow them. They succeed in releasing Godzilla, who battles with Gigan and defeats him by decapitating him. Godzilla, thinking he is still battling with the Gotengo, chases after the ship. Godzilla is first led to Sydney, where he defeats Zilla. He then proceeds to defeat Kumonga in New Guinea, Kamacuras in Manazuru, Anguirus, King Caesar and Rodan next to Mount Fuji, and finally Ebirah and Hedorah in Tokyo Bay. He is finally brought to the Xilien mothership. The Gotengo attempts to destroy the mothership, but its shields are too strong and the Gotengo is soon kept busy with fighter ships. Kazama takes a fighter and manages to enter the mothership, destroying the generator, which allows the Gotengo to drill through to the core of the ship and attempt to fire the Masers. However, the Xiliens teleport on board and kill all of the non-essential crew members, bringing Shinchi, Miyuki, Gordon and pilot Reiko Namikawa to the Controller. The Controller reveals that the Xiliens want the mitochondria in human cells to survive and were simply demolishing civilization to show humanity its place as their "cattle." He also reveals that he and Ozaki are Keizers, a fusion of mutant and human DNA, which is what allowed Ozaki to avoid his control. However, the Controller manages to control Ozaki until he is stopped by Miyuki, who uses the Shobijin's sword to free him. The Secretary of Defense and the EDF leader are revealed to be alive, having somehow escaped imprisonment. As the humans make their escape, Ozaki battles the Controller, ultimately winning. Going insane, the Controller self-destructs the mothership, intent on taking everyone down with him. Ozaki is able to board the Gotengo just as the mothership is destroyed.

Godzilla battles a new, final foe known as Monster X, while Mothra battles a rebuilt and modified Gigan. Gigan perishes as Mothra turns the cyborg's own power against him, just as the remaining crew of the Gotengo are victorious. Godzilla is still fighting Monster X, who soon transforms into his true form, Keizer Ghidorah, who defeats Godzilla and starts to drain his life force. Ozaki transfers his "Keizer energy" to Godzilla and both restores his strength and empowers him. Godzilla destroys two of Keizer Ghidorah's heads and throws him around the ruins of Tokyo. Finally, Godzilla hurls Keizer Ghidorah into the air and fires his red spiral heat ray, which pushes Keizer Ghidorah into outer space, where he explodes. Godzilla then continues his battle against the Gotengo, using his atomic breath against the ship, forcing it to crash. Just as Godzilla is about to attack the survivors of the Gotengo his son, Minilla, manages to calm Godzilla down and convinces him to leave and forgive mankind for their sins. Together, Godzilla and Minilla leave a ruined Tokyo behind and Godzilla lets out one final roar to commemorate 50 years of destruction.


Main article: Godzilla Final Wars/Credits.

Staff role on the left, staff member's name on the right.


Main article: Godzilla Final Wars/Credits.

Actor's name on the left, character played on the right.



Weapons, vehicles, and races


Main article: Godzilla Final Wars/Gallery.


Main article: Godzilla Final Wars/Soundtrack.

Alternate titles

  • The Godzilla (early title)
  • Godzilla: The Last War (Godzilla: Ostatnia wojna; Poland)
  • Godzilla: The Final War (Γκοτζίλα: Ο Τελικός Πόλεμος; Greece)
  • Godzilla: Final Battle (Godzilla: Batalha Final; Brazil)
  • Godzilla: The Final Battle (Godzilla: La Batalla Final; Latin America)

Theatrical releases

View all posters for the film here.

Foreign releases

U.S. release

U.S. Godzilla Final Wars DVD front and back cover

Toho held the world premiere of Godzilla Final Wars at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood, California, on November 29, 2004. Only a handful of public screenings followed, such as at the 2005 Asian Film Festival in New York City, G-Fest XII in Park Ridge, Illinois, on June 9, 2005, and the Dryden Theatre in Rochester, New York, on September 3, 2005.[6][7][8] While these screenings were subtitled, the English-speaking actors were not dubbed in Japanese, as was the case in Japan. Sony released it to DVD on December 13, 2005, with the same "hybrid" Japanese version, along with the English dub recorded by Red Angel Media[9] in Hong Kong. In reaction to Legendary Pictures' Godzilla reboot, Sony released the film to Blu-ray on May 6, 2014, paired with Godzilla: Tokyo SOS.

Thai release

Thailand was the first country to release Godzilla Final Wars on DVD and VCD, in April of 2005.

French release

Following a theatrical run in France which started on August 31, 2005,[5] LCJ Editions released a two-disc Godzilla Final Wars DVD on August 26, 2006.

Russian release

Godzilla Final Wars premiered on Russian television on October 29, 2005, followed by a DVD release shortly thereafter.[5]

German release

Splendid Film released Godzilla Final Wars on DVD on November 28, 2005. This release used a textless version of the film with alternative color grading.[10]

Box office

Godzilla Final Wars had the largest budget ever used in a Japanese Godzilla film, at around ¥1,900,000,000 ($19,000,000). Any hopes Toho had of Godzilla Final Wars ending the series with a box office bang were crushed when the film opened in Japan on December 4, 2004. In its opening weekend, it came in third at the box office, with a mild $1,874,559 gross. It was crushed at the box office by Hayao Miyazaki's Howl's Moving Castle and Disney/Pixar's The Incredibles. The film ended its theatrical run with an unprofitable $12 million.


Godzilla Final Wars received mixed reviews from fans. It was intended to be a "monster mash" to celebrate Godzilla's long history, but due to the large cast of monsters, each was only allowed limited screen time. Furthermore, the film departed from previous films in the series by introducing elements of human-focused action — an addition that was variously praised and condemned. The film made a number of obvious homages to The Matrix, Independence Day, X-Men, and Star Wars, which attracted some criticism from audiences. The monster fights in Final Wars were unusually short for the series. This was done to make Godzilla appear far more powerful than he had been in the past, and to solve the problem of having 14 monsters jammed into one film.

Despite these criticisms, other fans praised the action, the numerous monster appearances, and the cameos of many actors from previous Godzilla films, as well as the appearance of popular former MMA fighter Don Frye as Captain Douglas Gordon.

Video releases

Sony DVD (2005)[11]

  • Region: 1
  • Discs: 1
  • Audio: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Special features: Behind-the-scenes featurette (18 minutes), trailers

Sony Blu-ray (2014)[12]

  • Region: A/1
  • Discs: 2
  • Audio: Japanese (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1), English (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1)
  • Special features: Behind-the-scenes featurette (22 minutes) and teaser for Godzilla: Tokyo SOS, behind-the-scenes featurette (18 minutes) and three trailers for Godzilla Final Wars
  • Notes: Packaged with Godzilla: Tokyo SOS.



Japanese trailer
German trailer


Footage from the world premiere in Hollywood


  • Godzilla Final Wars was the final Godzilla film until the 2014 American film Godzilla, because Toho wanted to renew interest in the series. Toho didn't produce another Godzilla film until Shin Godzilla in 2016.
  • Godzilla Final Wars is, so far, the last feature-length Godzilla film to utilize suitmation; Shin Godzilla and Legendary's four Monsterverse films all make use of CGI and motion capture instead.
  • The opening of Godzilla Final Wars features stock footage from various other Toho kaiju films, including most of the Godzilla films. However, no specific events from those films are referenced, aside from Godzilla first appearing in 1954, and the wording of that sentence suggests there is only one Godzilla in this continuity.
  • As a 50th anniversary celebratory film, a large group of actors from previous Godzilla films, both classic and recent, made appearances as main characters or cameo appearances. This goes for the monsters as well, as most of the monsters in the film had not been in a film for over 30 years.
  • The character played by Kenji Sahara in the film is named Hachiro Jinguji, which was the name of the character played by Jun Tazaki in Atragon.
  • Kumi Mizuno's character, Reiko Namikawa, shares her surname with the character Namikawa from Invasion of Astro-Monster, who was also portrayed by Mizuno.
  • After Zilla is hurled into the Sydney Opera House by Godzilla, the Controller of Planet X throws a tantrum and shouts "I knew that tuna-eating lizard was useless!", referencing the TriStar Godzilla's diet of fish in the 1998 American film. In the English dub, Zilla is called a "tuna-head" instead.
    • Patrick Tatopoulos, designer of the TriStar Godzilla for the 1998 film, was present at Godzilla Final Wars' world premiere in Los Angeles. Despite the monster's portrayal, Tatopoulos said he was honored to have his monster appear in an official Toho Godzilla film.[13]
  • The Canadian child played by Jordan Fleming owns a huge number of toys of various Toho kaiju, with the exception of a nondescript blue turtle which he throws into the fireplace with a cry of "You loser!" This may have been a jab at Gamera and/or the Pokémon franchise.
  • Godzilla Final Wars is the first film in the franchise to have a Western composer write most of the music.
  • Mothra is the only returning kaiju, other than the ones appearing in stock footage, not to have a new design, instead appearing exactly as she did in Godzilla: Tokyo SOS.
  • Though Mothra is only seen her imago form, a cave painting of two larvae can be seen on Infant Island.
  • Concept art of the Giant Octopus exists for this film, showing that it was meant to appear in it but was scrapped.
  • A small tank resembling an armadillo appears in a piece of concept art alongside the Gotengo and Godzilla. This is a reference to Tarkus, a fictional creature from the Emerson, Lake & Palmer album of the same name. Keith Emerson, a member of the band, served as the film's composer.
  • This was the last Godzilla film to have a poster illustrated by artist Noriyoshi Ohrai, who had illustrated posters for most of the films since The Return of Godzilla. Ohrai passed away in 2015.
  • This was the first Godzilla film shot partially with digital equipment.
  • Godzilla Final Wars was the first Japanese Godzilla film to not be canon to the 1954 original.[14] Similar to Godzilla vs. Megaguirus, only one Godzilla exists in the film's continuity, with the individual who attacked Japan in 1954 being the same monster in the rest of the film.
  • Godzilla Final Wars was the first Toho Godzilla film to receive a PG-13 rating from the MPAA.
  • Godzilla Final Wars is the last of three Godzilla films to reuse a shot from the 1975 Toho film Conflagration of an oil refinery explosion, along with Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah and Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla. It is spliced into Ebirah's attack on Tokai.
  • At 125 minutes, Godzilla Final Wars is tied with Godzilla Minus One as the longest Japanese Godzilla film, although the American-produced GODZILLA (140 minutes) and Godzilla: King of the Monsters (132 minutes) are longer.
  • Several regulars from Ryuhei Kitamura’s prior films make cameo appearances. Versus star Tak Sakaguchi and Kanae Uotani (The Messenger, Aragami, Sky High, Azumi, Battlefield Baseball) portray two of the Controller of Planet X’s bodyguards. Azumi actor Yasunari Takeshima and Versus actor Kazushi Ooba are among the New Gotengo's crew. Alive star Hideo Sakaki portrays the Deputy Captain of the Eclair. Versus actor Minoru Matsumoto, Longinus actress Yumi Kikuchi and Azumi actor Shinji Suzuki play mutant soldiers of the M-Organization. Kitamura himself cameos as a radio DJ interviewing Kenji Kohashi, who was also in Azumi. Sky High actor Shosuke Tanihara, who was also in Godzilla vs. Megaguirus and Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla, has a cameo along with one of the young lovers watching the Xilien conspiracy unfold live on Nitto National Broadcasting. Famous character actor Yoji Tanaka, who also appeared in Alive, has a cameo in the end credits as a guard of Douglas Gordon’s holding cell, who is knocked unconscious by Shinichi Ozaki while distracted by music on his headphones. According to the official Godzilla website in 2004, Reika Kirishima from Versus and Alive and Yusuke Kamiji from Sky High appear as extras in the roles of an EDF soldier and an Xilien, respectively. Main cast members Kazuki Kitamura, Jun Kunimura, and Masato Eve had also appeared in prior Ryuhei Kitamura films as well.
    • During Kitamura and Kohashi's scene, Kitamura says, "Have some fun!" in English, referencing a radio show of the same name hosted at the time by his former friend and actor Hideo Sakaki. During the show, Sakaki would often yell the phrase when announcing himself.

External links


This is a list of references for Godzilla Final Wars. These citations are used to identify the reliable sources on which this article is based. These references appear inside articles in the form of superscript numbers, which look like this: [1]

  1. Kalat, David (2010). A Critical History and Filmography of Toho's Godzilla Series. McFarland. p. 250. ISBN 9780786447497.
  2. "List of Godzilla Movies". Nenda Ryuukou. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  3. 3.0 3.1 ゴジラ FINAL WARS|ゴジラ 東宝公式サイト (official Godzilla.jp page)
  4. ゴジラ FINAL WARS - Godzilla.jp
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Godzilla Final Wars (2004) - Release info - IMDb
  6. Musetto, V.A. (12 June 2005). "Asian Persuasion". New York Post.
  7. Archive: G-FEST XII Movies on G-Fan.com
  8. Healy, Jim (3 August 2005). "Oh, Godz". City.
  9. "Dubbing". Red Angel Media. Archived from the original on 20 November 2008.
  10. TrashMovie (17 January 2006). "OFDb - DVD: Splendid (Special Edition) (Deutschland), Freigabe: FSK 16 von Godzilla: Final Wars (2004)". OFDb. Retrieved 2 January 2023.
  11. Amazon.com: Godzilla - Final Wars (2005)
  12. Amazon.com: Godzilla Final Wars / Godzilla: Tokyo SOS - Set [Blu-ray]
  13. Henshin!Headlines for 2004 (Archive.org)
  14. Shin Godzilla Walker: The New Legend of the King of the Monsters (3rd ed.). Kadokawa. 26 September 2016. p. 47. ISBN 978-4-04-895632-1.


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