Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


GODZILLA 2000 (1999). Director: Takao Okiwara.

"Godzilla is inside each one of us." [-- well....maybe.]

In this film the world already seems to know of the big lizard's existence, and there is absolutely no suspenseful build-up to his first appearance. Shinado (Takehiro Murada) is a scientist who wants to study the creature, and has formed a group called the Godzilla Prediction Network, which can figure out whenever the big guy is going to appear. Shinado's slightly obnoxious little daughter, Io (Maya Suzuki), is the group's bookkeeper and follows her father into danger. Yuki (Naomi Yushida) is a photographer who's desperate to get a close up photograph of Godzilla. A gigantic spaceship, which first appears as a big flying rock, comes to Japan and eventually transforms into another monster called Oga that Godzilla battles ... Is anyone still awake? With its surplus of silly humor and characters, this Japanese movie seems to take its cue in large part from Hollywood's Godzilla film made the previous year, which despite its many flaws, was a lot more entertaining. Godzilla has been somewhat redesigned and looks a little better, but is still kind of silly and he's still played by a man in a suit: "suitmation." While the special effects in Godzilla 2000 are better than in the older movies in this series, they are still second-rate for the most part. All in all, this was hardly a new approach to the great Japanese monster.

Verdict: For pathetic Godzilla geeks only. *1/2.

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