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Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (2003)
"Gojira tai Mosura tai Mekagojira: Tôkyô S.O.S." (original title)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 1,824 users  
Reviews: 30 user | 27 critic

One year after the fight between Godzilla and Mechagodzilla, the two monsters along with Mothra face off in a conclusive battle royale.

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Title: Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (2003)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Noboru Kaneko ...
Yoshito Chûjô
Miho Yoshioka ...
Pilot Azusa Kisaragi
Mitsuki Koga ...
Mechagodzilla Operator Kyôsuke Akiba
Hiroshi Koizumi ...
Dr. Shin'ichi Chûjô (Linguist / Yoshito's father)
Akira Nakao ...
Premier Hayato Igarashi
Kôichi Ueda ...
General Dobashi
Kô Takasugi ...
...
Chihiro Ohtsuka ...
Takeo Nakahara ...
JSDF Chief Hitoyanagi
Norman England ...
Sgt Woodyard
Naomasa Musaka ...
Gorô Kanno
Yumiko Shaku ...
Yûsuke Tomoi ...
Taigi Kobayashi
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Storyline

Forty-two years after her first visit in Tokyo, Mothra returns to warn mankind that they must return Mechagodzilla, along with Godzilla's bones, to the sea, for the dead must not be disturbed. If not, dire consequences will follow. However, Godzilla is once again on the rampage, and Mechagodzilla is Japan's only defense. Written by Oliver Chu

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Shitô kara ichi'nen...hitobito wa tashika ni shôri te ni shita to shinjita...kare ga futatabi awarareru made ni...! (One year after the battle to the death...humankind believed it had certain victory in its hands...until he appeared once again...!) See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for sci-fi monster violence and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Release Date:

13 December 2003 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Godzilla, Mothra, Mechagodzilla: Tokyo S.O.S.  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After the adult Mothra's death, the eyes of her offspring change from blue to red. Following the color change they become very active fighters against Godzilla. In the previous movie, when Mecha Godzilla went out of control, it's eyes turned red as well. See more »

Crazy Credits

After the final credits, its is revealed that an unnamed lab is ready to create ANOTHER Godzilla clone. See more »

Connections

Follows Son of Godzilla (1967) See more »

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User Reviews

 
In striving so hard to perfect his technique, Mr. Tezuka disregarded everything he got right the first time around.
11 January 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

It would seem as if director Masaaki Tezuka was on a mission when he made "Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S." His two previous movies in the long-running franchise ("Godzilla vs. Megaguirus" and "Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla") were heavily criticized for uneven, glitch special effects and having not enough emphasis on the monsters. In "Tokyo S.O.S.," he only half-accomplished his mission. The special effects have been improved: there aren't as many awkward moments, the camera is coordinated a little better, and the sense of scale of the giant creatures has been improved. He's also given Godzilla, MechaGodzilla, and Mothra more than two-thirds of the movie to dominate—although this ended up working to the movie's detriment. But the sad news is that in striving so hard to patch up his technique, Mr. Tezuka disregarded everything he got right the first time around.

"Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla" wasn't one of the crowning achievements of the entire series (Godzilla, supposedly an unstoppable menace, seemed to be quite the wimp to me) but what it did boast was a very interested and involving human-level story. It was really about this emotionally unconfident woman, blamed for the deaths of several fellow soldiers, trying to redeem herself by saving her country from a giant monster and find some place in the world. She had detailed relationships to the other people in the movie. The story and details behind the construction of MechaGodzilla was also very fascinating and well-written.

All of that is gone in "Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S." The attempt is there; the movie has a lot of human characters, and we are meant to care for them in the same way. But the screenplay is sketchy and in too great a hurry to rush through itself. Mothra, who was brought back into the series, I felt, much too soon, does not seem to have a real sense of place in the movie. She feels obligatory, like she was just thrown in at the last minute. Now the script provides a lame excuse: that she is upset that the bones of the first Godzilla were used to construct MechaGodzilla. Admittedly, this sort of thing can work (and has worked before) when the movie either acknowledges it as corny or develops it in a way that can be taken seriously. But "Tokyo S.O.S." dashes through this subplot, giving it no real backbone. And that's just a default example: every single strand of plot and story in the movie feels exactly like that.

Only thirty minutes pass before the climax is underway, and both sides of this half-hour mark are unbearably passionless. The former is too sketchy and the latter is too overblown and padded out. Even though the special effects are very impressive, they are not coordinated in a way that communicates a real sense of spectacle or wonder or science-fiction terror. Godzilla, who is treated as much bigger a menace than in "Godzilla Against MechaGodzilla," has a really impressive scene when he rises from the ocean—with Michiru Oshima's brilliant percussion-heavy score thumping in the background—but nothing after that really stands out. But once again, there is supposed to be some profundity behind all of this. MechaGodzilla was constructed from the first Godzilla's skeleton and therefore still contains some of that monster's life inside of it; it's fighting its own descendant. And Godzilla was supposedly drawn to that location, having sensed the DNA of its ancestor. And Mothra is there to balance the effect. But none of this is given strong consideration; it all feels obligatory and forced. As a result, the climax, even with all that goes on it, seems to drag without end.

Of the three Godzilla movies directed by Masaaki Tezuka, this is the dimmest and the least interesting. It features the best special effects, but there is no passion in its storytelling. Mr. Tezuka apparently wanted to prove that he could make a technically rich Godzilla movie and he did. But he also forgot what all the really good Godzilla movies (including the two he made before) had and that was interest in the project. If he was interested in the story he was telling—and again, the screenplay wants us to think that it is rich and full of profound detail—the sensation did not communicate well to the screen.


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