|“||Who will be eradicated, man or Godzilla. (滅びるのは、人か、ゴジラか。)||„|
|“||Despair evolves. (絶望は進化する)||„|
Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters (ＧＯＤＺＩＬＬＡ怪獣惑星?), also known as Godzilla Part 1: Planet of the Monsters for its Netflix release, and Godzilla: Monster Planet, is a Gojira Kaijū WakuseiJapanese animated tokusatsu kaiju film produced by Toho Company Ltd. and Polygon Pictures. It is the 32nd film in the Godzilla series and the first animated film in the franchise.
The film was directed by Kobun Shizuno, Hiroyuki Seshita, with a screenplay written by Gen Urobuchi. Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters takes place in the far future, with humans returning to a Godzilla dominated planet Earth, having initially tried to escape it to little success.
This film was followed by two sequels, being the first in a trilogy, with the first sequel, Godzilla: City on the Edge of Battle, being released on May 18, 2018. The second sequel, Godzilla: The Planet Eater released on November 9, 2018.
The film begins with Haruo Sakaki attempting to stop the emigration project to Tau-e, due to the large risks involved with the planet's unsuitable environment. He sits in a large craft, bound with explosives, threatening to detonate them if the Committee sends the seemingly coerced volunteer group to the planet's surface. After being confronted by a member of said volunteer group, Haruo reluctantly stops, and is incarcerated, with the volunteer group perishing shortly after as their craft enters the planet's atmosphere, and explodes.
A flashback of the film then occurs, detailing Earth's history of monster attacks, with Kamacuras, Dagahra, Dogora, Orga, and Godzilla being seen. It's detailed how the Exif and Bilusaludo arrived, with the latter offering to help destroy Godzilla, going as far as to build a mechanical imitation of Godzilla, which ends up failing.
Haruo is the spoken to by Metphies in his cell, who questions him on the data the former's giving to him, inquiring about his motives. Haruo speaks of a plan he's created to convince the Committee that they can defeat the monster, while being against humanity's original plan of just running from Godzilla. Metphies finds it curious that Haruo seems to bent on wanting to see the monster again, in spite of all the pain it's caused him and his generation. He then leaves, taking Haruo's data with him, and thus spreading it through the ship anonymously.
Meanwhile, the crew of the ship is debating on what to do about the planet's habitability, noting that the explosion of the landing craft seen prior was a major psychological blow to the ship's population. A return to Earth is hypothesized as the ship can manage the journey in spite of some risks, and the timespan for when the new planet may be habitable is eight years, too long to wait. It's hypothesized that the time since humanity has left Earth may have allowed the environment to calm down, enabling habitability, while opposing opinions suggest it's gotten worse. It's noted that an anonymous thesis about Godzilla and its weaknesses had arose, and that getting the information would require special credentials, meaning an informant was in the Committee.
Said thesis finds its way around the ship, with many people questioning what Godzilla is, and others realizing that the possibility of returning to Earth may very well be true with this new information coming around. Adam Bindewald is seen conversing with a fellow crew mate, and the two question where the information may have come from, before being surprised by Metphies, who enters a nearby chamber.
Mulu-elu Galu-gu and Metphies speak on the thesis as well, with the latter speaking on how the research may have been done out of personal interest, but aids in providing content that will support a plan to return to Earth, due to the presence of an effective Godzilla counterattack method. Galu-Gu thinks higher of Haruo due to the interesting report, and goes on about how defeating Godzilla was once impossible for humans. The two then exchange banter regarding the Bilusaludo's failure to construct Mechagodzilla, and the Exif's failure in "brainwashing" Earthlings with their religion, before stating potential what ifs for the past were just fairy tales at that point in time.
The Aratrum then makes the jump back to Earth, with the ship's population being overjoyed to see the planet again, and in some cases, for the first time. The crew sends twelve drones to the planet's surface to scout out the area, and calculate that the estimated elapsed time for the solar system was around 10,000 years, approximately. Much to the shock of the crew, some determine that the ecosystems of the planet may have changed in that timeframe, and that Godzilla may not have even survived it. This is swiftly undercut by comments that Godzilla may have multiplied in that time.
The drones reach the surface, which is covered in a dense fog, while also picking up electromagnetic interference. As the drones switch to sensor monitors and come to an altitude of 500 meters, the atmospheric density increases, making further descent impossible. The sensors pick up erratic terrain, and suddenly movement is detected, with the temperature around the one drone increasing. As the temperature keeps rising, a loud, familiar roar is heard, and the drone's signal is cut off.
Later, talks relating to Godzilla are thrown around, acknowledging the monster operates as an individual, over a pack. It's determined by Martin Lazzari that, due to the radiation present in the planet's atmosphere maintaining stable numbers, multiple Godzillas are unlikely. It's then questioned how the monster even survived for 10,000 years, with Martin explaining that lotus seeds have survived a fifth of that time, and that it may be going dormant every few thousand years, or have even multiplied, with this being the final member of the species surviving, noting that Godzilla's biology is well beyond every known aspect of science, while bringing up the chilling concept that it may be immortal.
Metphies speaks up, bringing up extermination as the only probable course of action, given humanoids can't hope to coexist with Godzilla. A small uproar to the idea occurs, and Endurph brings up how they've drafted anti-Godzilla strategies, bringing up the anonymous thesis. Metphies offers to reveal who wrote the draft on the conditions that they're not charged for the release of this information, and that Haruo is released on bail, revealing he created it.
Haruo then briefs the crew on what Godzilla's capable of, biologically, bringing up its shield system, and its electromagnetic pulse functions, and potential counters. The plan involves locating and destroying the amplifying organ of Godzilla's shield, before launching a close range assault with the assistance of EMP probes which would result in Godzilla's self-destruction by destroying him from within. Said operation would require around 600 people. The operation's ruled out by one crew member, before, humorously preparations are made to land on the surface.
Once on the surface, multiple base camps are set up for the companies engaging in the coming conflict, and a rundown of the plan is gone over, with Haruo being paired with Yuko Tani, the latter being designated as the former's handler. They then pair up with Martin and a few other crewmates and venture around the immediate area. The camp of Company A is then suddenly attacked by the Servum, a subspecies of Godzilla, which kills 12, critically wounds 35, and damages or destroys the landing ships of the crew, resulting in a seeming change of plans, as Elliot Leland, the commander of the operation, deems it too risky given they haven't even seen Godzilla yet, and taken heavy losses. The change of plan involves all the surviving crew to rendezvous with each other at a specific area, with the remnants of Company A, including Elliot, Martin, Yuko and Haruo, having to make their way through Godzilla-dominated territory.
With a roar, Godzilla suddenly arrives on the horizon, prompting the landing craft Haruo's in to the bank to the left, with the resulting action causing the already stressed craft to crash land. Godzilla moves in to destroy the craft and Haruo mans a hovercraft to attempt to figure out how Godzilla's shield works. Once small arms fire does nothing to spark the shield's activation, Haruo attempts to kamikaze the craft into Godzilla, only for Leland to rain artillery fire down on Godzilla's back, providing the information at the cost of his life, as Godzilla fires a beam at Leland's vehicle, obliterating it.
With the knowledge of Godzilla's weaknesses, his dorsal spines being the origin of his shield, now confirmed, a plan to attack and lure Godzilla into a trap site is put into motion. Thus, a large airborne battle begins raging on between Godzilla, the remaining human forces, and eventually, the Servum, who return to seemingly defend the monster. After a long, drawn out conflict, Godzilla is prematurely diverted into the trap location via strategic bombing run, and Haruo's force succeeds in pinning the monster down by collapsing two canyon walls with explosives.
After utilizing artillery to destroy Godzilla's dorsal plates, Haruo utilizes his power suit and buries an EMP probe in the monster's hide, before artillery keeps firing to ensure Godzilla's regeneration can't rebuild his dorsal plates, and allow his shield to recharge. Yuko and the rest of the power suit squad then join in the fight and help Haruo secure their own EMP probes in Godzilla's hide, which burrow into the monster's skin, cause the electromagnetic waves within the monster to become erratic, which in turn destroys him, causing him to violently explode.
The morning after Godzilla's defeat, Martin and Haruo converse, with the former expressing doubt that this Godzilla was truly the one who attacked Earth 20,000 year ago. Haruo wonders how it couldn't be when it was identical to the one from the past, when that was the tip off to Martin, who knew nature was all about change, and identified the Godzilla they fought as a hypothetical offspring.
As Haruo speaks on the relief that they at least have a counter to Godzilla, earthquakes suddenly rock the area, and a nearby mountain explodes, revealing the original Godzilla. Having grown to an immense 300 meters, the towering titan begins to destroy everything around it, taking down escaping landing craft with an oscillatory wave and wiping out a massive area in front of it with a shockwave generated by its tail. Haruo is left trapped until rubble, with his ally's fates being unknown as the film ends.
A post credits sequence has Haruo waking up, only to see a native Earth female nearby. She takes off her mask, exposing her green eyes, and the scene ends.
Staff role on the left, staff member's name on the right.
- Directed by Kobun Shizuno, Hiroyuki Seshita
- Written by Gen Urobuchi
- Music by Takayuki Hattori
- Production design by Ferdinando Patulli
- Sound Designer Satoshi Motoyama
Actor's name on the left, character played on the right.
- Mamoru Miyano as Haruo Sakaki
- Kana Hanazawa as Yuko Tani
- Tomokazu Sugita as Martin Lazzari
- Yuuki Kaji as Adam Bindewald
- Daisuke Ono as Eliott Leland
- Takahiro Sakurai as Metphies
- Kazuhiro Yamaji as Endurph
- Junichi Suwabe as Mulu-Elu Galu-gu
- Kenta Miyake as Rilu-elu Belu-be
- Kazuya Nakai as Halu-elu Dolu-do
- Kenyu Horiuchi as Unberto Mori
- Tomisaburō Horikoshi as Daichi Tani
- Kanehira Yamamoto as Takeshi J. Hamamoto
- Shin'ya Takahashi as Jack O'Sullivan
- Junichi Yanagita as Marco Jeanne
- Haruki Ishiya as Josh Emerson
- Shigeyuki Susaki as Benjamin Smith
- Aya Suzaki as Controller
- Shigeyuki Susaki as Controller/Young Haruo
- Riki Kagami as Elderly person
- Masumi Taira as Elderly person
- Ari Ozawa as Miana
- Michiko Kaiden as Landing ship pilot
- Haruka Watanabe as Landing ship pilot
- Daiki Hamano as Hover pilot
- Nana Hamasaki as Female reporter
- Masayoshi Sugawara as Male reporter
- Takaaki Uchino as Male newscaster
On August 18, 2016, Toho announced that an animated Godzilla film is currently in the works for a 2017 theatrical premiere, with Gen Urobuchi as the writer, and Kobun Shizuno and Hiroyuki Seshita as the directors.
On January 19, 2017, six members of the film's main voice cast were revealed, alongside a piece of concept art with what appears to be a duo of unknown mechs and human soldiers walking through a forest. Alongside this announcement was that of the film's scheduled stage event at AnimeJapan 2017 on March 26, 2017.
March 6 yielded more fruit when another concept image was posted on the Godzilla anime's official Twitter once more. This time, the piece depicts two people in heavy duty suits walking through a foggy forest full of spiny trees.
On March 13, it was announced that the film will release on Netflix later in the year, following a theatrical release in Japan.
On the 22nd, a promotional flyer was given out to the buyers of the Shin Godzilla Blu-ray release in Japan, which revealed the film's full title of Godzilla: Monster Planet.
On the 24th, an official description for the anime was revealed via the film's official site, shown below. Alongside this was news of the film's release date, which has been slated for November, 2017.
On the 31st, a featurette for the film was revealed. It possessed interviews with voice actors, some previews into the development of the film, including the creation and rendering of models within the film. It was filmed and subtitled entirely in Japanese.
On June 12, 2017, a promotional poster for the film was revealed, this time featuring the titular monster himself. The design of the creature was shown to be very reminiscent of the recent 2014 design for the monster.
On July 6, a thirty second teaser trailer for the film was revealed. Short snippets of the film preview included shots of the protagonist, Haruo Sakaki, the main cast, a new kaiju, and a brief shot of Godzilla, shrouded in dust, somewhat reminiscent of the 2012 Comic-Con trailer for the 2014 Godzilla film.
At a later date, it was announced that S.H. MonsterArts would be producing a figure of the 2017 Godzilla incarnation for the film, and a sample image of a figure prototype was released at the time of the announcement.
On July 30, 2017, a press release was pushed out by Toho, and was also documented by Scifi Japan. It revealed the film's English title of Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters, and once again confirmed the film to be launching on Netflix, with a tentative release gap of late 2017, to early 2018. Alongside this press release also came a plethora of high quality images from the film.
A new trailer for the film dropped on August 15, and featured many new shots of Godzilla himself, the human operations against him, and also featured much more in the way of plot based dialogue. The trailer, much like Shin Godzilla's, was released in a full version, which was one minute, fifteen seconds in length, and a shortened version, which was only thirty seconds in length.
On August 19, the finalized statue of the film's incarnation of Godzilla was revealed to the public after a tease of it presence on August 11. It's roughly two meters tall, and stands in Kawasaki.
On August 21, it was announced that advanced ticket sales would go online for SevenNet. Purchasing a ticket would grant the buyer with a Movie Monster series Godzilla figure, with a blueish, nearly opaque color.
In addition, an acrylic diorama could also be obtained with the purchase of tickets.
October 2 yielded interesting fruit when the announcement of a novelization for the film was announced via the film's official site. It will be titled Godzilla: Monster Apocalypse, and will be a prequel to the film, detailing the events that occurred leading up to the film.
On October 4, 2017, the announcement of the film's theme song, "White Out", was unveiled, alongside the song's lead vocalist. This piece would later be used for the film's third trailer and the film's credits sequence.
On October 6, a collaboration poster for Planet of the Monsters and Toho Cinemas in Ueno was revealed.
A day later, on the 7th, the site was updated with an "Investigation" tab. This contains the film's timeline of events and encounters before the film.
On October 12, the composer for the film,Takayuki Hattori, was announced. Artwork for the film's soundtrack was also revealed. With this announcement, this will be the third Godzilla film scored by Takayuki Hattori, the first being Godzilla vs. SpaceGodzilla in 1994, and the second being Godzilla 2000: Millennium in 1999.
On October 23, 2017 a new trailer for the film dropped. It featured much more of the titular monster, and even revealed its atomic breath design, for the film. The trailer had a tease of the aforementioned "White Out" musical track accompanying it.
On November 14, 2017, a small amount of TV spots were uploaded and released to the general public.
A new trailer detailing the film's characters was launched on December 19, 2017.
News of the film's North American Netflix premiere came on January 7, 2018 in the form of an announcement trailer. The film's release date for Netflix was confirmed to be set for January 17, 2018.
- Godzilla: Monster Planet (Literal translation)
- Godzilla Part 1: Planet of the Monsters (English Netflix release)
- Godzilla (English Netflix crediting)
- Season 1 (English Netflix release)
- Chapter 1 (Godzilla anime website)
Planet of the Monsters debuted across 158 screens, and earned $919,000 with 71,200 admissions. It was estimated to go on to earn around $5,000,000 by the time its theatrical run completed.
Critical reception for the film has been generally positive, with Brian Ashcraft of Kotaku providing a review of the film. He praised the film's depiction of the Aratrum, stating that the ship's depiction as bleak was atypical, but well done, right down to how resources were managed.
Dialogue was also praised, sounding appropriately like jargon, while remaining in focus and keeping the plot straightforward and brisk. However, this seemingly came at the cost of character development, which was noted to be sparse outside of Haruo Sakaki. In addition, character designs were criticized as generally uninspired. It was stated that the film could've used a longer run time to add onto characters that were underdeveloped.
The film's entire final act was praised in addition, with the set pieces, cinematography, and military tech design being brought out as the major pluses for the segment of the film. However, criticisms were aimed at how the lack of character development resulted in muted emotional impact when supporting cast members died.
It was also stated that while the characters were fairly bland and undeveloped, the film’s interpretation of Godzilla was surprisingly scary and quite effective as a movie monster. Overall, Brian stated the experience as a whole was good in spite of the flaws.
IGN released a review of the film upon its Netflix release. Naoya Fujita, who reviewed the film likened its premise and plot progression to a video game, more specifically, to defeating a boss. The reviewer noted that while the film had an overtone of desperation, it gave off a positive vibe due to the film's plot, which has humanity reclaiming a planet, over being attacked by the monster, ala Shin Godzilla. Having humanity on the offensive vs. the defensive the audience normally gets was a highlight.
The portrayal of Godzilla was noted to be a high point, as Godzilla being conjoined with the planet and nature gave off the same feeling as seeing awe inspiring sights for real, an achievement given the film was done through CG over live action.
Criticism was aimed at the film's run time, as the reviewer felt the film cut off right as it began to pick up, and in turn felt that the next few parts could've just been condensed into one film.
Overall, Naoya felt the change of putting humanity on the offensive over defensive was positive, but losing the destruction of well known cities on top of social commentary to gain said new twists was noted to be a potential downside that would only be answered with the sequels.
Home media releases
On February 26, 2018, home media releases for Planet of the Monsters were announced on the film's official websites. Toho Video will release three editions for the film on May 16, 2018. These include a 2-disc all-region Blu-ray Collectors Edition, a single-disc all-region Blu-ray standard edition, plus a single-disc R2 DVD standard edition.
Multiple bonus incentives for ordering these editions of the film were revealed, being retailer exclusive. Incentives range from posters to t-shirts.
As of this announcement, a North American release hasn't been announced, as the negotiation of a license deal still needs to go through.
On March 25, at the Animation Film Godzilla Special Stage event at AnimeJapan 2017, it was announced that Planet of the Monsters was the first in a planned trilogy of animated Godzilla films.
The first sequel to the film, Godzilla: City on the Edge of Battle, was announced on November 17, 2017, with a release date of May 18, 2018.
The second sequel, Godzilla: The Planet Eater was announced on May 18, 2018, and released on November 9, 2018.
- Main article: Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters (Manga adaptation).
A manga adaptation of the film launched in March of 2018, featuring new content not seen in the film, alongside additional story content.
- This is the first Godzilla film to not be a live-action film.
- This is the second Godzilla movie to have two directors. One director has had a background in the Godzilla films, having directed two films, one being Godzilla vs. SpaceGodzilla.
- The subtitle of this film is based on a 1994 Godzilla simulator title, Monster Planet of Godzilla, which screened only at a Tokyo theme park called Sanrio Puroland.
- The phrase firstly released in August, 2017 "Who will be extinct, man or Godzilla?" (「滅びるのは、人か、ゴジラか。」?) is akin to "Who will be extinct, mankind or the Legion?" Horobirunowa Hitoka Gojiraka (「滅びるのは、人類か、レギオンか。」?) used in Gamera 2 (1996). Horobirunowa Jinruika Regionka?
- Godzilla anime official website
- Godzilla anime official Twitter
- Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters Netflix entry
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- @GODZILLA_ANIME (March 22, 2017).【AJ2017まであと5日】いよいよ新情報発表まで5日を切りました！カウントダウン企画第4弾の「コンセプトアート」です。TOHO animationブース（東6ホール：J82）ではキービジュアルの大型バナー展示や本編登場の巨大メカニックの再現展示も！！#anigodzi Twitter. Retrieved May 5, 2017
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- (July 30, 2017). GODZILLA: PLANET OF THE MONSTERS Press Notes From Toho SciFi Japan. Retrieved July 31, 2017
- @GormaruIsland (August 11, 2017). An official 2 Meter GODZILLA (Monster Planet/Planet of the Monsters) Statue is currently in the works. Facebook. Retrieved August 13, 2017
- @GODZILLA_ANIME (August 11, 2017). 本日はとある場所に来ています。なんと現在『GODZILLA 怪獣惑星』に登場する2Mゴジラ立像を制作中なんです！そして片塰造形監督による色彩チェック中。アニメゴジラの全貌にご期待ください！！#アニゴジ Twitter. Retrieved August 13, 2017
- (August 21, 2017). News: 2017.8.21 - セブンネット限定でオリジナルグッズ付前売り券の発売決定！ Godzilla Anime. Retrieved October 27, 2017
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