Godzilla vs. Mothra
|Godzilla and Mothra: The Battle For Earth|
Official Japanese poster
|Directed by||Takao Okawara|
|Produced by||Tomoyuki Tanaka
|Written by||Kazuki Omori|
|Music by||Akira Ifukube|
(Sony Pictures Entertainment)
Godzilla and Mothra: The Battle For Earth (ゴジラvsモスラ Gojira tai Mosura?) is a 1992 Japanese science fiction kaiju film produced by Toho Co., Ltd.. Directed by Takao Okawara with special effects by Koichi Kawakita, the film stars Tetsuya Bessho, Satomi Kobayashi and Akiji Kobayashi. The 19th installment in the Godzilla series, unadjusted for inflation the film remains the highest grossing film of the entire Godzilla series. After the success of the previous year's Godzilla vs King Ghidorah, Toho decided to bring back Mothra, their second most famous creation. Composer Akira Ifukube won a Japanese Academy Award for his score. The film was the second highest grossing film in Japan in 1993, second only to Jurassic Park.
In the beginning of the world the dominant civilisation tried to control the weather of the planet so the monster Battra was deployed by the Earth, a dark, more combative Mothra. After destroying the civilisation, the Earth sent Mothra to stop Battra. Battra then went into hibernation so that he could destroy an asteroid that would strike earth in 10,000 years. But the monster is awoken early by a meteorite, which also had awoken the nuclear monster Godzilla. On a far off island a large egg is unearthed in a storm. A pair of Shobijin, "The Cosmos", who survived Battra's attack warned the humans that the egg belonged to Mothra and that she would attack them if they did not return it. But the humans did not listen, and attempted to bring the egg to the mainland to be exploited as an attraction for profit, as they did with The Cosmos. The egg hatched on route and the larvae Mothra fought Godzilla, who was emerging from the sea. Godzilla was interrupted by Battra, and they fought underwater. On the mainland, Mothra attempted to rescue The Cosmos. Surviving an attack from the military, Mothra spun a cocoon, emerging in her adult form as Godzilla emerged from an erupting volcano. Transforming to its adult form, Battra fought Mothra over the city. Mothra was then nearly killed by Godzilla, but was rescued by Battra, who re-energised Mothra with its life force. Mothra joined forces with Battra, and the two gigantic insects managed to defeat Godzilla, paralysing it and carrying it out to sea. However it would be a Pyrrhic victory as Battra was severely injured during the fight with Godzilla and died, its body sinking into the sea with Godzilla. Mothra used her powers to secure Godzilla under the ocean. Mothra then left, flying into space to take Battra's place and destroy the asteroid heading for earth.
- Tetsuya Bessho as Takuya Fujita
- Satomi Kobayashi as Masako Tezuka
- Takehiro Murata as Kenji Ando
- Keiko Imamura and Sayaka Osawa as the Cosmos
- Saburo Shinoda as Professor Fukazawa
- Akiji Kobayashi as Yuzo Tsuchiashi
- Megumi Odaka as Miki Saegusa
- Akira Takarada as Jyoji Minamino
- Makoto Otake as Takeshi Tomokane
- Kenpachiro Satsuma as Godzilla, the King of the Monsters who gets mixed up in the battle between Mothra and Battra.
- Mothra, a giant moth deity who at first fights Battra, but later convinces him to help her fight Godzilla.
- Battra, an evil divine moth who battles Mothra but later helps her fight Godzilla.
- Hurricane Ryu as the Battra larvae
After the film was released in Japan, Toho commissioned a Hong Kong company to dub the film into English. In this international version of the movie, an English title card was superimposed over the Japanese title, as had been done with Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah (1991).
Manga Video released the international version of Godzilla vs. Mothra on video in the United Kingdom on July 3, 1995. An Italian-dubbed version (titled Godzilla contro Mothra) of the international version was released by Yamato Video in Italy.
Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment released Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah and Godzilla vs. Mothra on home video on April 28, 1998. This was the first time either film had been officially released in the United States. TriStar used the Toho dubbed versions, but cut the end credits and created new titles and opening credits for both films. To avoid confusion with video releases of Mothra vs. Godzilla (1964), then titled Godzilla vs. Mothra, TriStar renamed the film Godzilla and Mothra: The Battle for Earth.
The film sold approximately 4,200,000 tickets in Japan, becoming the number one Japanese film on the domestic market in the period that included the year 1993. It made ¥2.22 billion in distribution income (roughly $20,000,000 [U.S]). It was the highest grossing film of the Heisei Godzilla series and, unadjusted for inflation, the highest grossing film of the entire franchise. Adjusted for inflation, the highest grossest film in the series is still King Kong vs. Godzilla (1962). It remains the fourth most-attended monster film in Japan, and the second biggest film in Asia, behind Jurassic Park.
Ed Godziszewski of Monster Zero said, "Rushed into production but a few months after Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, this film is unable to hide its hurried nature [but] effects-wise, the film makes up for the story’s shortcomings and then some." Japan Hero said, "While this movie is not the best of the Heisei series, it is still a really interesting movie. The battles are cool, and Battra was an interesting idea. If you have never seen this movie, I highly recommend it."
Stomp Tokyo said the film is "one of the better Godzilla movies in that the scenes in which monsters do not appear actually make some sort of sense. And for once, they are acted with some gusto, so that we as viewers can actually come to like the characters on screen, or at least be entertained by them." Mike Bogue of American Kaiju said the film "[does] not liv[e] up to its potential," but added that "[its] colorful and elaborate spectacle eventually won me over" and "the main story thread dealing with the eventual reconciliation of the divorced couple adequately holds the human plot together."
Home media releases
Sony - Blu-ray (Toho Godzilla Collection) 
- Released: May 6, 2014
- Picture: MPEG-4 AVC (1.85:1) [1080p]
- Audio: Japanese and English (DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0)
- Subtitles: English, English SDH, French
- Theatrical Trailer (HD, 1:53, Japanese DD 2.0, English subtitles)
- Teaser 1 (HD, 0:32, Japanese DD 2.0, English subtitles)
- Teaser 2 (HD, 0:33, Japanese DD 2.0, English subtitles)
- Teaser 3 (HD, 0:34, Japanese DD 2.0, English subtitles)
- Teaser 4 (HD, 1:01, Japanese DD 2.0, English subtitles)
- Notes: Comes a 2-Disc double feature with Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah.
Columbia/Tristar Home Entertainment
- Released: November 10, 1998
- Aspect Ratio: Full frame (1.33:1) [NTSC]
- Sound:English (2.0)
- Theatrical trailer
- Liner notes
- Case type: Keep Case
- Region 1 (DVD)
- Notes: Only in a double feature with Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah (1991).
In Japan, Godzilla vs. Mothra (1992) won the following awards:
- 1993 Tokyo Sports Movie Awards - Best Leading Actor [GODZILLA AND MOTHRA: THE BATTLE FOR EARTH]
- 1993 Best Grossing Films Award - Golden Award and Money-Making Star Award [GODZILLA AND MOTHRA: THE BATTLE FOR EARTH]
- 1993 Awards of The Japanese Academy - Newcomer of The Year: Keiko Imamura, Sayaka Osawa
- 1993 Awards of The Japanese Academy - Best Music Score: Akira Ifukube
- 1993 Awards of The Japanese Academy - Best Supporting Actor: Takehiro Murata 
Notes and references
- "Kako haikyū shūnyū jōi sakuhin 1993-nen" (in Japanese). Motion Picture Producers Association of Japan. Retrieved 6 February 2011.
- Review Ed Godziszewski, Monster Zero, June 10, 2002
- Review Japan Hero
- Review Stomp Tokyo, March 8, 1997
- Review Mike Bogue, American Kaiju
- Awards for Gojira vs. Mosura at the Internet Movie Database
- "ゴジラvsモスラ (Gojira tai Mosura)" (in Japanese). Japanese Movie Database. Retrieved 2007-07-19.
- Godzilla vs. Mothra at the Internet Movie Database
- Godzilla vs. Mothra at AllMovie
- Godzilla vs. Mothra at Rotten Tomatoes