Godzilla on Monster Island 1972 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

Email Address – bbuckley@triad.rr.com


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Movie Information 

  • Director: Jun Fukuda
  • Producer: Tomoyuki Tanaka
  • Japanese Release Date: March 12, 1972 by the Toho-Eizo Company. Running time 88 minutes
  • US Release Date: August 1977 by Cinema Shares International/Downtown Distribution. Running time 88 minutes
  • Taglines: “I think it stinks!” “Space Monsters War with Godzilla for the Earth!”
  • Alternative Names: Godzilla on Monster Island, Godzilla versus Gigan

Synopsis

Gengo, a cartoonist hired to design monsters by the developers of an amusement park called World Children’s Land, senses trouble when he meets the company chairman-a teenager whom, he later learns, is supposedly dead! As it turns out, is employers are really alien cockroaches (the skies and the bodies of dead people) from a planet disposed of by pollution. The aliens are hatching an evil plan to take over resource rich planet Earth; Gengo, with help from his karate type girl and a fat heavy and a woman trying to rescue her brother (a kidnapped computer scientists forced to repair the aliens electronic gizmos) for those the invaders plans and Godzilla and Angilas swim 4th from Monster Island to confront the bad guy monsters. And they are called Gigan and King Ghidorah.

What Are My Thoughts

I think this movie is okay there are some good points about it like the fact that at World Children’s Land is a giant tower that looks like Godzilla is truly famous in the Godzilla genre. You even see a website that has this particular tower is called Godzilla Land.

What I don’t like bout the movie

The bad points about this movie are when Gigan and King Ghidorah 1st show up they are circling the Godzilla tower and they seem kind of fake and it is quite obvious I reminded so much because I like Godzilla but for others it could be a great criticism as it is in most of these movies. Another thing I found a little weird is Godzilla and Angilas are somehow talking in the Japanese version it sounds like record scratching and in the American version it actually have been talking that is where it gets weird. Okay enough about that.

Trivia

  • Even though Ghidorah was “killed” in Destroy All Monsters (1968), his appearance in this film is explained by pointing out that the events of that film took place in the future date of 1999 while this film took place in the then present year of 1972. See more » The original script for this film was entitled “King Ghidorah’s Great Counterattack” (Kingu Gidora no Daigyakushû), which featured Godzilla, Rodan and Varan fighting Ghidorah, Gigan, and a new monster named Mogu. It was then reworked into the more appealing “Godzilla Vs. The Space Monsters: The Earth Defense Command” (Gojira tai Uchû Kaijû: Chikyû Bôei Meirei). The script pitted Godzilla, Angilas, and Majin Tuol (a giant stone idol, similar to Daimajin) against King Ghidorah, Gigan, and Megalon, all three recruited by an evil alien brain called Miko. This second script was ultimately reworked into the film it is today. The Godzilla Tower, originally from the script, was part of a world fair amusement park, and was not made for an evil purpose like in the final film (in one scene, Gigan actually mistook it for the real Godzilla!). Megalon finally made his debut in Godzilla vs. Megalon (1973), and Majin Tuol was reworked into King Shisar in Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla (1974).
  • This was the final appearance for King Ghidorah in a Showa era film. He later would return with a different look in Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah (1991).
  • As a cost-saving measure, stock footage from Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster (1964), Invasion of Astro-Monster (1965), Destroy All Monsters (1968) and other films were incorporated into the film (these films feature scenes of Godzilla, King Ghidorah and Angilas). Also the entire score of the film was composed of a re-used Akira Ifukube scores from numerous Toho Sci-Fi pieces.
  • This was the first film in which Godzilla actually drew blood. It first happens during the big battle later in the film when Gigan flies over past Godzilla and swipes his shoulder, and later, when Gigan repeatedly strikes a severely weakened Godzilla in his forehead.
  • This was Haruo Nakajima’s final role as Godzilla before retiring from the role.
  • Even though Ghidorah was “killed” in Destroy All Monsters (1968), his appearance in this film is explained by pointing out that the events of that film took place in the future date of 1999 while this film took place in the then present year of 1972.

Mistakes

  • Due to stock footage from earlier movies being used, the appearances of Godzilla, Ghidorah, and Anguirus keep changing.
  • Due to stock footage from earlier movies being used, the sky often changes from day to night.
  • When Godzilla is fighting Ghidorah next to the mountain, it is a stock shot from Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster (1964). As Ghidorah knocks Godzilla into the bridge, the Mothra larva appears at Godzilla’s feet, even though Mothra isn’t in the film.
  • After the Godzilla Tower is destroyed, the shot of Godzilla rising is from Invasion of Astro-Monster (1965). When he gets up, Rodan is visible in the background, even though he never appears in the film, aside from a stock-footage shot used earlier in the film.
  • Crew or equipment visible
  • When tanks are coming to stop Anguirus, a wire can be seen pulling the tanks forward.
  • The main human characters, when they descend to the ground on a cable, it is obvious that they are mere miniatures in reality. For one, they don’t have the proportions of a human being, nor do their clothes look like the ones the actual humans were wearing.
  • As Gigan steps on a car while ravaging across town, the front bumper and grill pop off the car, revealing that no engine is inside the plastic hood.
  • It is painfully obvious that in the shots which show Gidorah and Gigan flying, they are stiff dummies. In scenes that take place on the ground, both move around quite a lot, and Gidorah is always seen swinging his three heads about, so the flying scenes stand out like a sore thumb.
  • Pieces of Godzilla clearly keep falling off during some shots, indicating that the suit was already decaying during filming.

Closing Statement

This movie here is an alien invasion on a shoestring budget. The reason I say that is because most this movie a stock footage and you can see some drastic changes between Godzilla, Angilas, Gigan, and King Ghidorah. What they had to point out this movie does have a little more it is where Gigan is fighting Godzilla and with his hooks he smashes it Godzilla on ahead until he bleeds. There are some scenes were easy Godzilla falling down and it is quite familiar because it was shown in the movie Godzilla Versus the Smog Monster. All in all the movie was cheaply made not the best of the series I can tell you that, but if you are Godzilla fan you are going to want to add this one to your collection.

Written by Barney Buckley

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