Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (2000)
Godzilla disappears. (ゴジラが消える。)
Earth's greatest death battle. (地球最大の
Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (ゴジラ×メガギラス Ｇ消滅作戦 Gojira tai Megagirasu: Jī Shōmetsu Sakusen, lit. "Godzilla vs. Megaguirus: The G Annihilation Strategy") is a 2000 tokusatsu kaiju film directed by Masaaki Tezuka and written by Hiroshi Kashiwabara and Wataru Mimura, with special effects by Kenji Suzuki. Produced by Toho Pictures, it is the 24th mainline installment in the Godzilla series and the 25th Godzilla film overall, as well as the second in the Millennium series. It stars Misato Tanaka, Shosuke Tanihara, Masanobu Katsumura, Mansaku Ikeuchi, Hiroyuki Suzuki, Masato Ibu, and Yuriko Hoshi. The film was released to Japanese theaters by Toho on December 16, 2000. A shortened English-dubbed version of the film aired in the United States on the Sci-Fi Channel in 2003, after which Columbia TriStar Home Video released the uncut film to DVD in 2004.
Godzilla vs. Megaguirus follows the trend of Godzilla 2000: Millennium, being another continuity reboot to the series ignoring every film except the original. In this continuity, Godzilla has attacked Japan on and off since first raiding Tokyo in 1954. Following his most recent attack on the new Japanese capital of Osaka in 1996, the government forms the special anti-Godzilla unit known as the G-Graspers. Their ultimate weapon is the Dimension Tide, a miniature black hole gun which is believed capable of sealing Godzilla within another dimension. The weapon's test firing creates a wormhole which allows a Meganula to deposit its egg in the present day, giving birth to an entire swarm of the creatures. The Meganula steal Godzilla's energy and transfer it to their queen, transforming her into the gigantic Megaguirus. The G-Graspers race to use the Dimension Tide against Godzilla before he levels all of Tokyo, while Godzilla must contend with Megaguirus, who intends to steal the rest of his energy.
Godzilla vs. Megaguirus was the first Godzilla film directed by Masaaki Tezuka, who would direct two more entries in the Millennium series. It was followed by Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack in 2001.
In 1954, repeated nuclear testing revived a prehistoric beast called Godzilla, who proceeded to decimate the city of Tokyo in retaliation. After leaving the city as a smoking ruin, Godzilla vanished into Tokyo Bay. Tokyo was forced to undergo an extensive period of reconstruction, while the Japanese government moved its capital to Osaka. Despite the setback, Japan continued its postwar economic redevelopment over the course of the next decade, embracing nuclear power and putting Godzilla's attack behind it. However, in 1966, Godzilla returned and attacked the Tokai Nuclear Power Plant, feeding on its nuclear reactor. An investigation revealed that Godzilla was attracted by atomic energy, and had been drawn to Japan by the presence of nuclear power plants. Nuclear energy was subsequently banned, and the nation struggled to find a new source of energy to fill the void. The government founded the Bureau of Science and Technology, headed by Motohiko Sugiura, to research new clean sources of energy. A breakthrough was finally found in the form of plasma energy, which was a clean, limitless, and non-nuclear form of energy. It seemed Japan had finally found a stable energy source that posed no danger whatsoever.
That was until 1996, when Godzilla appeared to feed on the plasma reactor in Osaka. The JSDF deployed a team of commandos armed with rocket launchers to try and halt the beast, but their weapons proved useless. Godzilla massacred several of the soldiers, including their commanding officer. Kiriko Tsujimori witnessed her commander being crushed by debris during the battle, and swore vengeance against Godzilla. Five years later, Tsujimori is now part of an elite anti-Godzilla unit of the JSDF known as the G-Graspers, headquartered in Tokyo. They research new methods of combating Godzilla and track the monster's movements and predict the possibility of him returning to Japan. Tsujimori and some of her colleagues recruit inventor Hajime Kudo to their team and offer him a job working on their latest anti-Godzilla weapon: the Dimension Tide, a satellite-mounted device capable of firing a miniaturized black hole intended to imprison Godzilla for all eternity. Kudo works alongside his former college professor Yoshino Yoshizawa to complete the device. When the Dimension Tide nears completion, it is test-fired on an abandoned building in the outskirts of Tokyo. A young boy named Jun Hayasaka is wandering the area and witnesses the Dimension Tide's successful test-firing. He is caught by the G-Graspers, but Tsujimori allows him to leave as long as he promises to keep what he witnessed a secret. Jun agrees, and Tsujimori cheerfully sends him off. With the test-firing otherwise a success, Kudo and Yoshizawa begin work on mounting the Dimension Tide onto a satellite.
The night after the test-firing, a gigantic dragonfly enters through a time-space distortion left behind by the Dimension Tide. Jun witnesses the creature fly past, and follows it out into the forest. He sees it fly back through the wormhole and disappear, but finds a large blue egg seemingly left behind by the creature. Jun brings it back to his apartment in Tokyo, but notices when it begins secreting slimy liquid. Jun decides to throw the egg away, but when he learns that there is no garbage collection today, he dumps it into the sewer instead. The egg floats away into the depths of the sewers under Shibuya, and begins splitting apart into multiple smaller eggs. As days pass, the sewers become backed up and water begins flooding into the streets of Shibuya. One of the eggs hatches into a huge dragonfly nymph, which comes to the surface and brutally kills two civilians before scaling a nearby building. The nymph's skin breaks open, and from it emerges a giant dragonfly, identical to the one that passed through the wormhole. The dragonfly flies through the night sky, and Jun sees it fly past his bedroom. He meets with Tsujimori and tells her that it was his fault that the two civilians were killed in Shibuya. Tsujimori assures Jun it isn't his fault, and says it was likely the G-Graspers' fault instead. An insect must have gotten too close to the Dimension Tide firing and was mutated by it, she says. However, Jun shows her one of his entomology books and says that the culprit of the killings was a Meganulon, the nymph of a prehistoric dragonfly called Meganula, which lived during the Carboniferous period. Tsujimori is called back to G-Grasper HQ, where satellite photographs have revealed what appears to be Godzilla's atomic breath shooting out of the ocean at an unidentified flying object, which Tsujimori recognizes as the Meganula. Tsujimori and two of her colleagues travel to the location of the photograph inside the GX-813 Griffon, an advanced VTOL aircraft. Tsujimori is lowered onto a raft above the ocean to investigate the Meganula's carcass, but as she takes a skin sample from it the water begins to erupt and Godzilla surfaces. Tsujimori jumps from the raft and climbs onto Godzilla's back, then fires a tracer bullet created by Kudo into one of his dorsal plates. Godzilla submerges back under the ocean, and the G-Graspers release an SGS to follow his movements. The giant insect's skin sample is researched and confirmed to belong to a Meganula, which must have entered the present day through the wormhole left by the Dimension Tide. At this time, the G-Graspers are informed that all of Shibuya is underwater, and residents are being evacuated by boat. Kudo invents a Mini-SGS to search the flooded streets, and its cameras reveal clutches of huge eggs under the flooded streets.
Godzilla is sighted heading toward the island of Kiganjima, and the G-Graspers receive permission from the government to use the Dimension Tide against him. Kudo and Yoshizawa are upset that they are being rushed to complete the device, but Tsujimori apologizes and assures them this is their best chance to finally end Godzilla's reign of terror. The device is completed and launched into space, then prepared for use. Tsujimori and her crew use the Griffon to lure Godzilla ashore on Kiganjima, and allow the Dimension Tide to lock onto him. Meanwhile, the JSDF discovers thousands of Meganulon perched on the side of a building in Shibuya. They open fire on the creatures, which molt their skin and metamorphose into Meganula then fly to Kiganjima. Just as the Dimension Tide locks onto Godzilla, thousands of Meganula fly overhead and obscure the device's targeting screen. The huge insects begin swarming onto Godzilla and draining his energy with their stingers. Godzilla smashes several of them with his hands, feet and tail, then incinerates a great deal of them with his atomic breath. With the Meganula's numbers diminished, the Dimension Tide successfully locks onto Godzilla and fires its miniature black hole. Godzilla vanishes and the G-Graspers believe for a moment they have won, but Godzilla soon surfaces from underground and returns to the ocean. Most of the Meganula are dead, but the survivors return to the flooded streets of Shibuya and begin transferring the energy they stole from Godzilla into the gigantic cocoon of their queen. The Meganula die as they do this, but their queen emerges from her cocoon as a monstrous Godzilla-Meganula hybrid. The queen flies out of the water and roars, then begins flapping her wings rapidly, causing surrounding buildings to shatter and collapse. Kudo is buried under rubble in this moment, then awakens in a hospital the following day with a broken arm. He describes what he saw to a scientist, who confirms that the creature he saw is known as Megaguirus. A subject chosen among the Meganula as their queen, Megaguirus was unstoppable in the Carboniferous period and killed any and all creatures it came into contact with in order to expand its territory.
Not long after, Godzilla appears from Tokyo Bay, attracted to something in the city. The Griffon engages him and tries to lure him to an open area where the Dimension Tide can be fired, but Godzilla stops dead in his tracks and stares up into the sky. Megaguirus descends in front of the Griffon and challenges Godzilla to battle, intent on stealing the rest of his energy. The flapping of her wings causes a severe electrical disturbance, which disables the Griffon's flight and knocks out the Dimension Tide's targeting computer. The Griffon safely lands on a rooftop, but the Dimension Tide begins falling out of orbit. Kudo accesses the computer and restores power to the Dimension Tide, but cannot prevent it from falling from orbit. Godzilla and Megaguirus engage in a fierce battle, with Megaguirus flying circles around her foe and repeatedly battering and stinging him. She throws Godzilla into a building, then uses her claw to topple a structure near the top of the building onto Godzilla's head. As the battle rages on, Godzilla gains the upper hand and slices off Megaguirus' hand with his dorsal plates. Megaguirus tries to sting Godzilla again, but Godzilla grabs her tail and impales her stinger into the ground, leaving her unable to move as he jumps into the air and slams into Megaguirus. Megaguirus takes flight again and aims her stinger at Godzilla's head, but Godzilla catches it in his mouth. Godzilla snaps his jaws shut and bites off the tip of Megaguirus' stinger, causing her severe pain. As Megaguirus tries to back away, Godzilla fires his atomic breath directly at her, setting Megaguirus ablaze and causing her to fall from the sky. Godzilla blasts her again as she falls, and she explodes once she strikes the ground. Godzilla roars victoriously, then continues making his way through Tokyo. Tsujimori and Yoshizawa learn that Sugiura was illegally keeping a plasma reactor in the Bureau of Science and Technology's facility in Tokyo. Tsujimori punches him and accuses him of sacrificing countless lives for his own greed and ambition, then storms off and takes command of the Griffon. She contacts Kudo and tells him to lock the Dimension Tide onto the Griffon, then she will fly the craft over Godzilla just as the device fires. Kudo agrees, and locks onto the ship. Tsujimori flies over Godzilla as he is feeding on the plasma reactor, then jettisons from the Griffon and descends safely to the ground in a parachute. The Griffon crashes into Godzilla, enraging him. He sees the Dimension Tide falling above him and firing its black hole, and counters with his atomic breath. This triggers an explosion that envelops the entire area, and when the smoke clears only a crater remains and Godzilla is nowhere to be seen. Tsujimori and the G-Graspers celebrate at last, with Godzilla finally beaten once and for all. Or so they believe.
Only a few weeks later, Tsujimori visits Kudo in Akihabara and informs him that seismic activity has been detected under Tokyo. She proposes that it is possible Godzilla managed to escape from the black hole and was once again just buried underground. While Jun is attending school, he witnesses Japan's worst fears come true as Godzilla emerges from the ground and lets out a terrifying roar.
- Main article: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus/Credits.
Staff role on the left, staff member's name on the right.
- Directed by Masaaki Tezuka
- Written by Hiroshi Kashiwabara, Wataru Mimura
- Produced by Shogo Tomiyama
- Music by Michiru Oshima
- Cinematography by Masahiro Kishimoto
- Edited by Yoshiyuki Okuhara
- Production design by Takeshi Shimizu
- Special effects by Kenji Suzuki
- Main article: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus/Credits.
Actor's name on the left, character played on the right.
- Misato Tanaka as Major Kiriko Tsujimori, G-Grasper Captain
- Shosuke Tanihara as Hajime Kudo
- Masanobu Katsumura as Warrant Officer Makoto Nikura, G-Grasper Spokesperson
- Mansaku Ikeuchi as Master Sergeant Kazuo Mima, G-Grasper Operator
- Hiroyuki Suzuki as Jun Hayasaka
- Makiya Yamaguchi as First Lieutenant Seiichi Hosono, G-Grasper Pilot
- Tetsuo Yamashita as Third Lieutenant Tomoharu Okumura, G-Grasper crew member
- Toshiyuki Nagashima as Captain Takuya Miyagawa, Anti-Godzilla Special Forces
- Katsuo Nakamura as Dr. Tsuyoshi Yamaguchi, Special G Countermeasures Headquarters Biologist
- Kazuko Kato as Kaoru Hayasaka
- Masato Ibu as Motohiko Sugiura, Special Anti-G Director
- Yuriko Hoshi as Dr. Yoshino Yoshizawa, Special G Countermeasures Science Team First Laboratory Physicist
- Koichi Ueda as Government official
- Susumu Kurobe as Maritime Self-Defense Forces executive
- Shigeo Kato as Special Anti-G receptionist
- Keiko Shinohe as Neighborhood lady
- TOMO (Yuji) as Young man attacked by Meganulon in Shibuya
- Motoko Nagino as Young woman attacked by Meganulon in Shibuya
- Gokuraku Tombo as Waterworks officials
- Koichi Yamadera as Oha Suta host
- Emi Ota as Oha Suta host
- Masaya Matsukaze as S1 staff
- Hiroshi Kashiwabara as Government official / evacuating homeless man
- Masaaki Tezuka as Elementary school teacher
- Shinsuke Kasai as Refugee in Odaiba
- Wataru Mimura as Maritime Self-Defense Forces executive
- Eiji Hanawa as News announcer (voice)
- Yusaku Yara as Narrator
- Tsutomu Kitagawa as Godzilla
- Minoru Watanabe as Megaguirus
Weapons, vehicles, and races
- Main article: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus/Gallery.
- Main article: Godzilla vs. Megaguirus/Soundtrack.
- Godzilla vs. Megaguirus: The G Annihilation Strategy (literal Japanese title; alternate English title)
- Godzilla 2001 (early placeholder title)
- GXM (abbreviated title)
- Exterminate Godzilla (Exterminen A Godzilla; Mexico)
View all posters for the film here.
Godzilla vs. Megaguirus premiered in the U.S. at the Pickwick Theater on July 13, 2002, as part of G-Fest '02. The Sci-Fi Channel aired its U.S. television debut on August 31st, 2003, editing the international English dub down to 88 minutes.
TriStar Pictures released the film on DVD in the U.S. in 2004. Along with Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, which had the same street date, it was the first official American release of a Japanese Godzilla film to include the original audio, though the subtitles came from the English dub's script. This release also used Toho's international title card, marking the first time TriStar did not create its own title card for a release. TriStar would do the same for each of its subsequent Godzilla DVDs. While all official home video releases of the film in the U.S. have used its international title, it has occasionally aired on television under a direct translation of its Japanese title, Godzilla vs. Megaguirus: The G Annihilation Strategy, with even Sony Pictures' official website listing it under this title.
The budget of Godzilla vs. Megaguirus is estimated at $8,300,000. It opened in Japan on December 16, 2000 and grossed approximately $10,000,000, making it the second lowest-grossing entry in the Millennium Godzilla series. Total admissions in Japan were approximately 1,350,000, the worst for the series since Terror of Mechagodzilla in 1975.
Godzilla vs Megaguirus is often considered by fans to be the weakest of the Millennium series.
Toho DVD (2001) [Box Set]
- Region: 2
- Discs: 3
- Audio: Japanese (5.1 Surround)
- Subtitles: Japanese
- Special features: Five trailers and six TV spots for Godzilla vs. Megaguirus, two teaser trailers for Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack, audio commentary by Masaaki Tezuka, Kenji Suzuki and Misato Tanaka, audio commentary by Michiru Oshima and Kyoko Kitahara, cast profiles, making-of feature (40 minutes), Godzilla Promotion Campaigns featurette focusing on marketing for the series since 1954 (42 minutes), "Tamao Sato and the Godzilla Lab" featurette which includes public appearances by MireGoji attraction suits (25 minutes), storyboards, soundtrack for the film on CD, production booklet
- Notes: Out of print.
Universal Laser & Video DVD (2001)
- Region: 3
- Discs: 1
- Audio: Japanese (5.1 Surround), Cantonese (2.0 Mono and 5.1 Surround)
- Subtitles: English, Chinese (simplified and traditional)
- Special features: Japanese trailer
- Notes: Out of print.
TriStar Pictures DVD (2004)
- Region: 1
- Discs: 1
- Audio: Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
- Subtitles: English, French
- Special features: Trailers
Madman DVD (2005)
- Region: 4
Sony Blu-ray (2014)
- Region: A/1
- Discs: 2
- Audio: Japanese (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
- Subtitles: English, French
- Special features: 3 trailers for Godzilla vs. Destoroyah (2 teasers, 1 theatrical) and 2 trailers for Godzilla vs. Megaguirus (1 teaser, 1 theatrical)
- Notes: Packaged with Godzilla vs. Destoroyah.
- Although this film uses the same Godzilla suit used in Godzilla 2000: Millennium, the films do not take place in the same continuity. In this timeline, Godzilla was not killed by the Oxygen Destroyer following his attack on Tokyo in 1954, and did not return to Japan again until 1966. The film does not mention the use of the Oxygen Destroyer, and it is unknown whether it simply failed to kill Godzilla, or if Dr. Serizawa declined to use the device or never invented it in the first place.
- Strangely, the Codex entry for Godzilla ('00) in the mobile game Godzilla Defense Force states that the Oxygen Destroyer was used against Godzilla, sending him into decades of hibernation.
- Megaguirus and the Meganula are both adapted from the Meganulon, which first appeared in Rodan.
- Certain shots in the scene depicting Godzilla's first attack on Tokyo are stock footage from the original Godzilla, with the GiraGoji suit digitally replacing the ShodaiGoji suit.
- This is the only film in the Millennium series to use "vs." in its international title. However, the film's Japanese title uses "X," (Gojira X Megagirasu), which is also used in the titles of Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla (Gojira X Mekagojira) and Godzilla: Tokyo SOS (Gojira X Mosura X Mekagojira).
- According to Shinji Nishikawa: Drawing Book of Godzilla, an early plot for Godzilla vs. Megaguirus had astronauts finding Godzilla bones on the Moon. Shinji Nishikawa even prepared concept art for this plot.
- The parliamentary debate in this film following Godzilla's attack on the Tokai Nuclear Power Plant is a direct reference to a similar scene from the original Godzilla film, down to the outfit of the woman pounding her fist on the table.
- While in context of the story the soldiers in the opening scene are armed with rocket launchers, in reality these props were Japanese Howa 84RR recoilless rifles, based on the German Carl Gustaf. The weapon first appeared in the Godzilla series in Godzilla vs. Biollante, where Goro Gondo wielded it.
- Andy Johnson's account of playing an extra in two evacuation scenes
- List of firearms used in the film
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