You know, I think it would be a toss up as to which Godzilla movie had the deeper meaning behind it. The original movie is well known as being an allegory to the atomic bomb. That is a well known fact. Then you have today’s movie. This movie isn’t even subtle about it’s meaning. This is simply a movie talking about the rise in pollution over the years. But then again, the 70’s were an odd time for the Godzilla series. See for yourself as I review today’s movie, Godzilla Vs. Hedorah (a.k.a. Godzilla Vs. The Smog Monster)
The plot: A strange, tadpole-like creature is brought to Dr. Toru Yano to study. Taking his son, Ken, with him, Dr. Toru goes diving in the area where the creature was discovered but both of them wind up being attacked by an even larger creature, scarring them both. When a larger creature is seen sinking an oil tanker, Dr. Toru theorizes that the creature that sank the ship and the one that attacked him are two parts of the same creature, named Hedorah, and that they will continue to feed on pollution and get even bigger. Meanwhile, Ken is having visions of Godzilla battling the pollution and believes Godzilla will show up to fight the monster. Hedorah appears on land and begins feeding on some smokestacks when Godzilla appears. The two monsters begin to battle with Godzilla appearing to win as Hedorah escapes back into the sea. Hedorah reappears in a flying form that spews a cloud of toxic gases underneath it, killing thousands of people and destroying everything around it. A large group of people decide to throw an end of the world party at Mt. Fuji but Hedorah winds up killing several of the people during it’s battle with Godzilla. Dr. Toru figures out that the only way to kill Hedorah is to dry it out and has the JSDF construct two electrodes but the power is cut during the monster’s battle. Godzilla uses his own atomic ray to power the electrodes, beginning to dry out Hedorah’s body. Hedorah transforms into it’s flying form to try and escape but Godzilla uses his atomic ray to fly after it and bring it back. Godzilla once again uses his atomic ray to power the electrodes and dry out Hedorah, then rips the body to pieces and dries it out even more until there is nothing left but dust.
Yes, the most infamous scene that ever made Godzilla fans say “WTF”. Godzilla flying. This was probably the dumbest thing I have ever seen. But I am not the only one who thought so. The producer of the film actually said that the director had ruined Godzilla and banned him from not just directing another Godzilla film, but from directing any movie that Toho Studios ever made.
This was an odd movie. The plot was actually decent and could have been made into a better movie. The Hedorah monster was actually a neat idea and I liked the idea of it being able to change forms, although there were times where the monster looked too plastic. The battles between the two monsters were decent with the dark lighting in the film actually helping with them. The little animation sequences about Hedorah were a little humourous and helped to take away from some of the darker tones in the movie. This was one of the rare movies to show a monster specifically attacking people, as opposed to just destroying cities and military vehicles like they normally do. And of course there is that stupid flying scene. But this was the 70’s so maybe the director was on drugs when he decided to film that scene.
Not your average monster fits right in with your non-average movie.
Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5