Alternative Title: The bad one. The really bad one.
So if you talk to anyone who knows Godzilla films, they’ll generally have their opinions. They’ll have their unadulterated favorites. They’ll have their guilty pleasures. They’ll have their personal bombs. Those lists won’t always line up. There’s a lot of room for opinion variation on Godzilla. And that’s really a beautiful thing. Everyone gets their own journeys through these films, unique to them. Except for All Monsters Attack. Everyone, absolutely every single Godzilla fan, hates this film. And not in a love to hate kind of way. Not in a ‘it’s a pain, but watch it once to get it out of the way’ kind of way. Everyone straight up just recommends you skip this one. I told people I was writing up all the Godzilla films. Everyone who knows Godzilla assumed I was just going to skip this one.
So that’s how you know you’re in for a good time, right?
So lets rewind a bit. Destroy All Monsters was the Godzilla team blowing everything they had on it. All the monsters, all together. The biggest, baddest conflicts they could come up with, serving as a massive denouement to their kaiju saga. The story was resolved, and they gave Godzilla the sweetest send-off they could, before Toho kicked in its plan for shelving the movies for a while and launching the Godzilla Multinational Cartoon Universe. Interest in Godzilla movies were waning, and it was drawing less and less money over time, so that decision makes sense. Give the series new life in a different format. But, said cartoon didn’t come out. The companies Toho was going to be co-producing it with didn’t end up going through. Meanwhile, longtime Godzilla producer Tomoyuki Tanaka was looking at the competition, particularly the Gamera series of films, who were making bank by producing incredibly cheap kaiju films and marketing them directly to children. And he was like, you know what, we can do that too.
So he called up a screenwriter, and asked him to slap something together on the back of a napkin. Then he called up Ishiro Honda, longtime Godzilla director, and told him to start digging through people’s couches, because whatever change he found there was going to be this movie’s budget.
And that’s how this magic was born. A film where its questionable whether or not all the previous Godzilla movies actually happened and Godzilla et al are real in this universe, or they’re just movies in this world too. A film where children dealing with typical kid stuff is the primary conflict. A film where, although Eiji Tsuburaya is credited with the special effects out of respect, his health was too poor for him to work so all special effects had to be handled by his protege and by Honda on a shoestring budget, with rather poor results. A film that makes extensive reuse of the footage from the previous handful of films rather than shooting anything new. A film that centers on Minilla.
It’s not for nothing that this film is so hated.
Ehhhhhhhh, let’s do this.Continue reading