Godzilla vs. Gigan


Godzilla vs. Gigan
Godzilla vs. Gigan

Original Japanese poster
Directed by Jun Fukuda
Produced by Tomoyuki Tanaka
Written by Takeshi Kimura
Shinichi Sekizawa
Starring

Hiroshi Ishikawa
Yuriko Hishimi
Minoru Takashima
Tomoko Umeda

Toshiaki Nishizawa
Zan Fujita
Kunio Murai
Haruo Nakajima as Godzilla
Music by Akira Ifukube ("Godzilla March" by Kunio Miyauchi and Susumu Ishikawa)
Cinematography Kiyoshi Hasegawa
Distributed by Toho
Cinema Shares International/Downtown Distribution
Release date(s) March 12, 1972
Running time 89 min.
Language Japanese English

Godzilla vs. Gigan, released in Japan as Earth Destruction Directive: Godzilla vs. Gigan (地球攻撃命令 ゴジラ対ガイガン Chikyū Kogeki Meirei Gojira tai Gaigan?) and also known as Godzilla on Monster Island when first released to U.S. theaters, is a 1972 Science Fiction Kaiju film. The 12th of Toho Studio's Godzilla series, it was directed by Jun Fukuda with special effects by Teruyoshi Nakano. It is the fourth film to feature King Ghidorah and the third to feature Anguirus. It is also the first film to feature Gigan and the last to feature the Soshingeki-Goji suit; all Showa Godzilla films after that used the Megaro-Goji suit. Furthermore, this was the final film in which Haruo Nakajima would play Godzilla (he had played the role ever since the first film).

Contents

Plot

A species of giant insectoid aliens from a dying Earth-like planet in "Space Hunter Nebula-M" plot to colonize the Earth. The aliens assume the forms of recently deceased humans and work as the development staff of the peace-themed theme park, World Children's Land, the centerpiece of which is "Godzilla Tower". The Nebula-M aliens plan to use the space monsters Gigan and King Ghidorah, guided by two "Action Signal Tapes," to wipe out human civilization.

Manga artist Gengo Kotaka stumbles onto their plan after being hired as a concept artist for the park. When Gengo and his friends accidentally obtain one of the Action Signal Tapes and play it, Godzilla and Anguirus hear the signal and realize something is amiss. Godzilla sends Anguirus to investigate. When Anguirus approaches Tokyo, the Japan Self Defense Forces, misunderstanding the monster's intentions, drives him away.

Anguirus reports back to Monster Island, and Godzilla follows him back to Japan to save the Earth from Gigan and King Ghidorah. The aliens attempt to kill Godzilla with a lethal laser cannon hidden inside Godzilla Tower, but Gengo and his companions destroy the tower along with the aliens. After a lengthy fight, Godzilla and Anguirus force Gigan and King Ghidorah back into space and then Godzilla and Anguirus swim back to Monster Island, but not before Godzilla turns around and gives a roar of triumph.

Box office

In Japan, the film sold approximately 1,780,000 tickets.

English version

Haruo Nakajima (Godzilla), Kenpachiro Satsuma (Gigan), Koetsu Omiya (Angilias) and Kanta Ina (King Ghidorah, suspended by wires) put on a show in front of school kids as part of publicity for the films's release in Japan.

In 1977, Cinema Shares, the company responsible for the North American distribution of Godzilla vs. Megalon, released a slightly cut version of the international version of Godzilla vs. Gigan in North America. This version was re-titled Godzilla on Monster Island despite the fact that about a minute of the film actually takes place on Monster Island.

Very few edits were made, although Cinema Shares made several cuts to obtain a G-rating from the MPAA:

  • The title card reads "GODZILLA ON MONSTER ISLAND" and the laser beam effect from the Japanese credits sequence is gone.
  • Gengo calls his girlfriend "a hard bitch " under his breath. Cinema Shares muted the entire soundtrack when the word " bitch " is muttered.
  • Two scenes of Godzilla bleeding from Gigan's attacks are trimmed. Gigan also cuts Anguirus in his snout with his abdominal saw, which is also edited out.
  • While Godzilla and Anguirus swim away at the end of the movie, Godzilla turns and blasts the camera with his radioactive breath (lifted from the opening of the film). The energy beam fills the camera, over which the words "THE END" are superimposed.

Godzilla On Monster Island was frequently shown in television syndication throughout the 80s, and it aired several times on The Sci-Fi Channel before being replaced by the widescreen international version in 2002. In 1988, New World Pictures picked up the home video rights to Godzilla vs. Gigan and Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla. Toho provided New World Video with prints of the international versions, now titled Godzilla vs. Gigan and Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla, respectively. The dubbing was the same, but both films were now restored to their full length. These versions were subsequently re-released on video in 1992 by Starmaker Video, in 1997 by Anchor Bay and in 2004 by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. The Sony DVDs feature newly remastered prints of Toho's original international versions.

Titles

  • Earth Attack Mission: Godzilla vs. Gigan - Translated Japanese title.
  • Godzilla vs. Gigan - Toho's official English title and current home video title.
  • Godzilla on Monster Island - American theatrical release title.
  • War of the Monsters - U.K. release title.

DVD releases

Sony Pictures

  • Released: October 19, 2004
  • Aspect Ratio: Widescreen (2.35) anamorphic
  • Sound: Japanese (2.0), English (2.0)
  • Region 1
  • MPAA Rating: PG for sci-fi monster violence and some language.
  • Includes footage and dialogue cut from previous U.S. versions.

External links


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