The film serves as the introduction to the Heisei series of Godzilla films. So how do they usher in the new series? By throwing out all the goofiness and humor developed over the course of the Showa series, and bring Godzilla back to his destructive, radioactive roots.
- In the beginning of the film, where Goro investigates the fishing boat that had gone missing after sighting Godzilla, he comes across the crew, who've been reduced to dried out husks. Then he's attacked by huge, mutated sea louse that came off of Godzilla. The sea louse have a longer, overdrawn and almost humorous intro in the original version, but the American cut makes the scene shorter and far more terrifying.
- This movie was made during the height of the Cold War, and boy does it show. Not long after the fishing boat had spotted him, Godzilla attacks a Soviet nuclear attack submarine. Since at this point the Japanese haven't disclosed Godzilla's existence yet, the Soviets assume that the sub was attacked by the Americans. Both the Warsaw Pact and NATO go on high alert and are ready to start a war until the Japanese government reveals Godzilla as the true culprit. In other words, Godzilla unintentionally came close to kicking off World War III.
- Once Godzilla makes landfall in Tokyo, the JSDF engages him and naturally fails to stop him. When Godzilla uses his atomic breath on the JSDF tanks and missile batteries, the entire row is destroyed in a firestorm, and at one point there's a shot of a man burning to death as everything goes up around him.
- Similarly, at one point in Godzilla's rampage he comes across a highway with a long line of cars dotting it. After using his atomic breath on it, fire spreads up and down the line, heavily implying that hundreds of people trying to evacuate have been burnt to death trying to flee.
- The United States and Soviet Union both develop a plan to kill Godzilla by using a nuclear weapon. The Japanese government naturally refuses, and the plans among both nations are shelved. However, when Godzilla attacks Tokyo, a Soviet battleship in the harbor is heavily damaged, and as a result the all clear is erroneously given to a Soviet nuclear satellite, which proceeds to launch a bomb at Tokyo. Once word of this gets to the Japanese government, their intense fear is palpable when they realize that the nuclear bomb could easily kill more people than Godzilla, and what's worse, they lack the time to evacuate Tokyo.
- Thankfully the bomb is intercepted by an American missile and is destroyed in the atmosphere before it can do any damage. Unfortunately, the bomb's detonation in the atmosphere is all that's needed to revive Godzilla, whom had previously been losing a fight to the Super X.
- The devastation to Tokyo is really showed off during and after Godzilla's second fight with the Super X. The city looks like a bombed out ruin, and many areas are burning so bright that it makes the ruins look like the landscape of Hell. Godzilla has his face illuminated by the intense fires at several points, giving him a sort of devilish look.