Godzilla 2000: Millennium (1999)Director:
Hiroshi Kashiwabara, Wataru MimuraStarring:
Takehiro Murata ... Prof. Yuji Shinoda
Hiroshi Abe ... Mitsuo Katagiri
Naomi Nishida ... Yuki Ichinose
Mayu Suzuki ... Io Shinoda
Shirô Sano ... Prof. Shiro Miyasaka The Plot:
Godzilla is a literal force of nature to Japan (after the incident in 1954). The Godzilla Prediction Network (GPN) functions independently to study the mutant dinosaur and predict his landfalls. Meanwhile, the scientists of Crisis Control Intelligence (CCI) find a sixty million year old UFO deep in the Japan Trench. As CCI attempts to raise the UFO to study it, it takes off into the sky on its own. Godzilla arrives and battles the Japan Self Defense Forces, now equipped with powerful Full Metal Missiles, but the UFO appears, searching for genetic information that only Godzilla possesses. It fights Godzilla to a standstill, driving the monster underwater, and then lands to replenish its solar power.
Yuji Shinoda, the founder of the GPN, discovers the secret to Godzilla's regenerative properties (named Organizer G1 in the Japanese version, but Regenerator G1 in the American release), but so has the UFO. It frees itself from the JSDF's attempts to contain it, and heads for Shinjuku. After landing atop City Tower, it begins to drain all the files about Godzilla from Tokyo's master computers. CCI attempts to destroy the UFO using explosive charges, but Shinoda, attempting to find out more about the aliens, is nearly caught in the blast. He survives, and joins the rest of the cast on a rooftop, watching the UFO. Almost in response, the UFO broadcasts its message of invasion and a new empire on earth, and Shinoda reveals that the aliens are after Godzilla's DNA so that they may re-form their bodies.
Godzilla arrives and again battles the UFO. However, he is subdued by the UFO's assault, and it absorbs some of his Organizer G1, growing into a squid-like creature called the Millennian. However, the Millennian is unable to control Godzilla's DNA and further mutates into a horrible monster named Orga. Godzilla recovers and fights Orga, but it eventually gains the upper hand, and drains more of Godzilla's DNA, trying to convert itself into a Godzilla clone. Finally, Orga opens its mouth, intending to swallow Godzilla whole, but Godzilla tricks it by deliberately throwing his head into its throat. While Orga begins to transform, Godzilla unleashes his nuclear pulse, beheading Orga and blowing the alien to bits.My Thoughts:
This was the first TRUE Godzilla film I ever saw in theaters. You have no idea how happy it made me to see a giant monster fight on the big screen! Slight changes were made for the American release but they were minor and that version was liked so much by Toho that they never released their dubbed International version!
Godzilla, which we can assume is the grown Godzilla "child" we saw at the end of "Destroyah", is a much fiercer looking monster, with pronounced teeth and dorsal fins. He is also a little leaner in the legs which gives him the appearance of being a little faster.
Unlike just about every film after this one, this film while not directly acknowledging the previous visits of Godzilla, doesn't act as though this is only the second time we've seen him.
The special effects and action are incredible for a Godzilla film. Many more digital effects are used for the UFO and Millennium than I think we have seen previously and we even get to see Godzilla swim under water! It isn't till we get to the final forms of Orga that we really get into men in suits fighting it out.
Great film and one that you can get into without needing to know anything else about Godzilla. Again, a really great starter film!