Gamera vs Viras 1968 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

Email Address – bbuckley@triad.rr.com


gamera 1968poster

Movie Information 

  • Directed by Noriaki Yuasa
  • Produced by Hidemasa NagataMasaichi Nagata
  • Written by Nisan Takahashi
  • Starring  Kojiro HongoToru TakatsukaCarl Craig Jr.
  • Music by Kenjiro Hirose
  • Cinematography Akira Kitazaki
  • Editing by Shoji Sekiguchi
  • Studio Daiei Film
  • Distributed by Daiei Film (Japan)AIP-TV (USA)
  • Release Dates March 20, 1968
  • Running time 90 minutes
  • Language Japanese
  • Alternative Title Gamera versus Space Monster Virus, Destroy All Planets

Synopsis

The movie opens with a strange spacecraft approaching the Earth. The aliens within seek to conquer Earth and colonize the planet for themselves. Earth’s atmosphere apparently has just enough Nitrogen and Oxygen for them. The alien’s leader seems to be a central computer. Gamera flies onto the scene and attacks the alien spaceship.

The aliens use a cold spray to extinguish Gamera’s front jets, but Gamera’s claws flash out and manage to destroy one section of the alien spacecraft. The spaceship retreats, but is pursued and destroyed by Gamera. Before destruction, the ship signals its home world, Viras, and warns the inhabitants of Gamera and exhorts them to find some weakness in the giant Turtle.

Two rabble rousing scouts, Masao and Jim, incite all kinds of mischief around the camp. Masao is an electronics genius. Jim is American.Masao has a big sister, Masuki. Masuki tries to keep an eye on the boys, but Masao and Jim slip away. The boys sabotage a new sub being developed by Dr. Dobie.

Because of Masao and Jim’s prank, Dr. Dobie. and the scout master have a rough time in the sub. But when the boys learn that rest of the scouts will suffer for their prank, they confess to the prank and offer to make amends for their crime. Masao and Jim board the sub fix the problem and take the sub out for a test drive. While out on the water, the boys find Gamera and play with him. Unfortunately, the Virans show up and want to play too. The Virans trap Gamera and the boys in a force field. Gamera manages to free the boys but cannot get free of the force field.

With Gamera captive, the Virans search Gamera’s memory for a weakness. The Virans learn of Gamera’s love of children. Gamera then breaks free of the force field. The boys report back to the scout camp and breathlessly report their adventure to a doubting scout master – but are interrupted by the Virans. The Virans capture the boys and hold them hostage. Then, the Virans order Gamera to land which enables them to implant a mind control device in the turtle.

Left to their own devices by their alien captors, the boys wander around the Viran ship and learn that it is controlled by thought waves. In the control room, the Virans direct Gamera to destroy Okumayshi dam (stock footage) which promptly gets crunched by Gamera. Next, the Virans direct Gamera to destroy Tokyo. The boys try to escape the Viran ship while Gamera attacks Tokyo, but are captured and tied up.

After trashing the city, the Virans threaten to have Gamera destroy Earth AND kill the boys unless Earth surrenders. The boys escape and manage to contact the military, but are told that Earth must surrender or the boys will die. The courageous boys tell the military to blast them out of the sky. Nosing around the Viran ship some more, the boys manage to reverse the brain controls for Gamera and the catch ray. The boys then use the reverse catch ray to escape. Freed of alien control and with no children at stake, Gamera attacks the spaceship and damages it seriously.

Desperate, the Virans appeal to their true master, Viras, for help. Viras absorbs the other crew and grows to enormous proportions.  Viras uses its spiked head and underwater prowess to menace Gamera for a few minutes. Viras even impales Gamera on its spiked head. But Gamera then drag/lifts Viras into the air, suffocating the beast by carrying it into the stratosphere. The enemy vanquished, Gamera departs, with teeming throngs of Boy Scouts chanting the turtle’s name.

What I like about This Movie

This is one of those movies you either like or you don’t know monster in this movie is called Viras is squid like monster and what I like about this monster is that it doesn’t have any really impressive weapons he does have one thing dictate it points over his head would get together and it suddenly hard as a rock and it forms a peak or point and he can use that as a weapon as he did in the movie by stabbing Gamera. He also gets a very head of his and some crazy predicaments like Gamera through a rock at his head and it got stuck on his head. However Gamera get the best of hand but taken all three space freezing Viras to the point where he fall into the ocean and dies. The negative side of this story is that she looking props however they can be cool because they give you a sense of retro.

Trivia

  • American International titled their U.S. version “Destroy All Planets” after the success they had with the release of Ishiro Honda’s Destroy All Monsters (1968) under the title “Destroy All Monsters”.
  • This was the first film in the series to use flashbacks from the previous Gamera films as a way of saving money on the production. In this film, the flashback sequence lasts approximately fifteen minutes.
  • This was Kôjirô Hongô’s final appearance in the series.

Closing Statements

What I think about this movie is it is an okay Gamera movie. Viras is a very cool character however he is limited in what he can do and honestly when they made this character they took the cheapest possible way out which don’t get me wrong it is a good idea when you get. Anyway if you happen to like these families this was not the worst of the bunch but it’s close to the bottom.

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