Three kids join Mothra's priestesses on a journey to find the Lost Treasure of Nilai Kinai, an ancient lost "under-the-sea" civilization in hopes of preserving the Earth's declining environment. Pollution has unyielded the evil monster Dagahra, a monster seemingly too powerful for Mothra to vanquish. As a result, the environment's fate lies in the hands of the Lost Treasure. Written by
The last kaiju film Tomoyuki Tanaka would work on. This film was released a few months after his death. Tanaka created Godzilla and produced every Toho Co. Ltd. tokusatsu (special effects) movie between Gojira (1954) and this. See more »
I thought this was a really enjoyable movie, though aimed very much at kids. It reminded me of the old-style Gamera flicks, but with an important difference: the kid-heros behaved much more like real children than the insufferable brats of 60's monster movies.
However, my adult-brain has some reservations about it. Most of all, I found the inevitable "what I learned from the Monster" message appalling: the kids suggest it's best not to know too much, and much better to stay uninformed and let God straighten everything out. That's probably not the interpretation the film-makers wanted, but I thought that was what came across, loud and clear.
Another problem -- less serious and actually kind of endearing -- is the poverty of the special effects. Oh, don't get me wrong: some of the effects are first rate, especially those involving Mothra's transformations; and the matte shots are way ahead of the first "Mothra" (1996), where I found myself thinking of bad 70's sci-fi. But I've never seen more visible wire-work outside of a Full Moon picture. Otherwise impressive shots of Dagahrla streaking through the skies are ruined by the obvious cables running from its back. Then there's the Gogo, that bizarre Furby-like creature that creates miracles by peeing on things... even when you can't see the wire attached to his head, you just KNOW it's there.
Much more fun and far less ponderous than some of the later Godzilla flicks, this movie will appeal to anyone who has a lingering affection for the old Gamera movies, shortcomings and all. Just try not to think about it too much...
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?