I will start this review by saying that, once again, the modelers for this movie were incredible. We get whole space bases on both Earth and Planet X in additional to the usual cities and military vehicles. What makes these really stand out are just how intricate some of them are. There was a very nicely done satellite dish which was melted by an alien death ray at one point. I definitely applaud those who did the work and the ones who approved the budget for it.
I’m curious to see other Japanese monster films in this time period because some of the earlier entries to this series were more of a response to Japan receiving the H-Bomb in World War II. You could tell that everything about them was designed to talk about how mighty the H-Bomb was from Godzilla’s breath to his overall size. That even extended out to Rodan being woken up and freed from bomb blasts. Then, the first time we see Ghidorah in the series, that film was definitely preaching about world peace, but all of that is gone here. We are firmly planted in what I would consider a modern monster movie that really doesn’t have any kind of political agenda. Which is why I’m curious to see some other monster films of this time period. I’d imagine there was a shift in tone from getting over the war of days gone and moving into more of a commercial endeavor.
This one gets right to the point with a couple astronauts headed to Planet X, which sits in Jupiter’s shadow. Little do they know that some aliens live there under the surface and those pesky aliens have a plan.
Ghidorah is running around the alien world and they would like to borrow Rodan and Godzilla to fight him off. So, the aliens capture both and drag them back to Planet X.
What the aliens left out was that they could control the big baddies. So they launch a full-on assault of Earth with them. Fortunately, our astronauts have an idea that this is coming and are, of course, able to foil the alien plans for world domination.
If you take the big monsters out of this, it resembles Independence Day. In fact, I’d say ID borrowed heavily from this film. The aliens are beaten by a special device to disrupt their communications which oddly enough is how they were defeated in ID as well.
Personally, I loved this entry into the series. Old sci-fi flicks like this are a big weakness of mine, but there were some flaws. Some ideas were brought up that weren’t fully explored. The aliens had run out of water on their planet which seemed to be the driving force behind their aggression, but that was dropped once the giant monsters started attacking. The aliens also had more gold than they knew what to do with which could have been used to negotiate some trade for water that went sideways and started the war. However, none of that was really explored. The monsters are pretty much turned loose on Earth without a whole lot of reason.