The Rebirth of Mothra I 1996 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

E-Mail Address- bbuckley@triad.rr.com


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It would be served after the Heisei Series of Godzilla movies would end in 1995 the Toho Company would then eventually pick up the triple threat of Mothra. It seems that the Toho Company’s second most favorite Kaiju deserved a few movies in her own right. The very first film according to the Japanese was logically titled Mothra however while in the United States of America it was retitled as the Rebirth of Mothra. When it comes to this film most of the original fans of the original film that came out in 1961 film this new movie particularly strayed away from the original character of Mothra. The reason I say this is because she is classified as a protector of her own island and its people. She is also classified as a kind and benevolent law and it largely focuses on Mothra’s character which is a particularly good point to the film. People do not see that in the Mothra trilogies.

Let’s begin with the story the story begins on Infant Island where you see Mothra sitting on her throne and she is ready to finally reproduce after living a very long life. It would be shortly after this that a logging company located in Hokkaiido Japan accidentally discovers an ancient rock and all hell breaks loose. They pry the rock of its seal and suddenly it draws the attention of two tiny priestesses they call Moll and Lora. In the original movie that came out in 1961 there were tiny little twin priestesses, but they were called Shobijins and in the new Mothra trilogy there called the Elias. They summon their tiny version of Mothra in which they call it Fairy Mothra and they take off to Hokkaido to investigate an unusual accident. It is revealed to the Elias that a small piece of metal was removed from the rock and it was called The Seal of Elias. It was a device that possessed the ability to harness certain energies which was created by their ancestors to lock away the demonic Kaiju they call DesiGhidorahs. That very same creature that actually made the dinosaurs go extinct and left the surface of the planet Mars a barren wasteland is located within this rock.

The Elias Moll and Lora have a third evil sister they call Belvera and she suddenly steals the seal from the tiny girl Wakaba. Belvera manages to release the ancient beast from his dungeon and all hell breaks loose. The Elias know they have to summon Mothra and they do it with song. Mothra eventually shows up and after a long battle she eventually dies saving her children from Desighidorah only to sink into the depths of the sea sacrificing herself. It is after witnessing her mother’s death that the Mothra larva that is called Mothra Leo swims to Yaku Island and hopes to gain the power of The Ancient Tree of Life. Is there that Mothra Leo is transforms into an adult Mothra and a more powerful Mothra that holds off Desighidorah long enough for the Elias to seal the monster all back where she came from. After the battle has been won it is Mothra Leo that eventually flies back to Infant Island.

In the 1992 film Godzilla versus Mothra is there that Mothra’s reputation of the “Savior of the world” is reestablished and it makes Mothra was character little bit more interesting as the film betrays a more emotional part of the film worthy elderly Mothra’s death scene is more emotional. It can be a real tear jerker if you really sensitive. Especially when it comes to the second most popular Kaiju’s death. Another notable thing about this new Mothra movie is the new powers that Mothra Leo seems to possess it has the same powers as its Heisei Series predecessor that fought Godzilla in 1992 and it also features some new little abilities. Mothra Leo has a silken spray, chest beam, and a camouflaging technique. It is said that the original Mothra fans for the movie Mothra 1961 are not really big fans of this new Mothra was sheer power in regards of its numerous amount of beams and energy abilities.

Now we will talk about Desighidorah in the English translation is called Death Ghidorah and it is probably one of the most serious demon like Ghidorahs to ever hit the movie screen. It is in the family of Ghidorahs and it is revealed that it is a demon from space that goes around siphoning the floral life out of various worlds. When he came to the planet Earth he was fortunately sealed by one of the ancient Mothra was and the Elias ancestors before he could completely destroy the planet as he did to the planet Mars. This particular Kaiju is really displayed as a dark and fiendish creature, and is actually the very first Hedorah ever to walk on all four legs. I’m still the movie Godzilla Final Wars where Kaiser Ghidorah also lost on four legs. Kaiser Ghidorah reminds me of Desighidorah on steroids.

Despite having any flaws with the human characters is the Elias Moll, Lora and Belvera that actually steal the show. These particular characters according to the movie is Moll that wants to save the world from Desighidorah even if it means taking her own life. Lora is extremely sensitive and doesn’t want Mothra to fight and die in the process yet she wants the world to be saved and asked for Belvera she wants to use Desighidorah as a weapon to destroy humanity. On the note is an interesting fact that the Elias were virtually against Belvera and it also displayed that they still love each other and respect each other as sisters.

In my humble opinion what really stands out in this film is probably the musical score composed by Toshiyuki Watanabe. The various themes for Mothra such as the battle march when Mothra first appears to battle Desighidorah is pretty extreme and unique in itself and very memorable. One keynote about the score is the original Mothra song is performed by the Elias is very modern and crisp sounding. If you listen to it and had a very Latin beats in the way it sounds and it’s very addicting. Even though it does not have a real strong connection to the original Mothra film is very memorable and very enjoyable to watch over and over if you like this particular kind of child friendly movie. The rebirth of Mothra is a very nice addition to the concept of Mothra was peace/environment character and hopefully it will continue to be contagious as well as protect the environment and how they betray this particular character.

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Mosura 1961 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

Email Address – bbuckley@triad.rr.com


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This movie is typical of Toho to create in the way of a great story and unimaginable effect for it’s time with great directing. You have a triple threat here first the story is created by Shinichi Sekizawa and the special effects by Eiji Tsuburaya who did a lot of the Godzilla movies so he is seriously connected with the Toho Company. This movie is directed by one of the greatest directors of Godzilla film industry his name is Ishiro Honda.

Thus is the beginning of the movie you hear a bewitching serene song by the Mothra twins and they are called The Peanuts they are identical twins who sang beautifully when they needed or connected with Mothra telepathically. In this movie we see a businessman who is very much interested in the tiny superstars and tries to kidnap them. However Mothra’s larvae isn’t too happy with Tokyo as it crashes through the city to search for the twins thus an eventful times the larva is beginning to transform into a new stage of moth so while in the city it forms a cocoon around The Diet Building and eventually a new monster pops out of this cocoon. This to me was one of the better parts of the movie because of the special effects and if you never seen the movie before it is actually pretty cool to see Mothra squeeze her way out of this cocoon. She eventually squeezes out with her gigantic wingspan she wreaks havoc across the city.

They eventually find the twins and all as well for Mothra she eventually returns to the airport where they created a sign painted on the air strip having her to descend on the airport and then eventually taken back off to go back to the island. This is one of the better movies simply because it is not too far-fetched as it is today or having a cheesy feel about it they had a really strong start for a movie that would transpire into three other movies for Mothra.

Mothra is perhaps in the top three of the most popular kaiju that Godzilla has fall or within the Toho monster series. Here are some trivia for you there was supposedly a scene in which the Mothra twins or fairies plan on explaining Mothra’s origins but the company felt it was too long and dropped from the final draft. Here is a mistake in which she was see in the movie when Dr. Shinichi is showing the symbols he discovered in the cave to Sechan, you could see someone in black pants and shoes walking down the stairs behind Sechan’s head. So if you want to say a decent movie is obviously in black and white this is a very good movie for its time.

Gamera: Little Brave 2006 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

Email Address – bbuckley@triad.rr.com


glbposter

Movie Information 

  • Directed by Ryuta Tasaki
  • Studio Kadokawa Pictures
  • Distributed by Kadokawa Pictures
  • Release Dates April 29, 2006
  • Running Time 96 Min.

Synopsis

Precipitated by the premise that Gamera self-destructed to destroy several Gyaos in 1973, the tale picks up thirty three years later, when the son of one of the survivors of that incident finds an unusual egg, from which a baby turtle hatches.

The boy, Toru, raises the creature, quickly realizing it as remarkable in that it hovers and breathes fire. The creature quickly outgrows the house, is relocated by Toru and his friends to maintain secrecy, and then disappears.

Concurrently, many shipping disasters occur in the area, the cause of which is the Kaiju Zedus (ジーダス), which soon thereafter rampages through the city.

It corners Toru and his friends, but the boy’s former pet, now significantly larger, intercedes. The young Gamera is wounded in the fight and captured by government officials, who hook the creature up to a machine which infuses it with liquid derived from mysterious red stones found in the vicinity of egg, and which scientists theorize gives Gamera’s their power.

Zedus attacks again, and the Gamera, now larger, goes out to battle him. The human characters determine that the still-immature Gamera must consume the red stone which Toru had found with the egg in order to fully realize its powers. The egg is located and, with some difficulty, delivered to Toru, who throws it into the Gamera’s mouth during the battle.

The Gamera’s power of rocket-propelled flight manifests, and it defeats Zedus by breathing a fireball at it. The Kaiju escapes further government investigation with Toru’s assistance, and flies off as the boy wishes him farewell.

What I like about That Movie

Let’s just say that this is not one of my favorite movies and that is because they reverted back to a cheesy movie. Don’t get me wrong I don’t really dislike this movie, but honestly ensure continued with the Heisei Series with that kind of seriousness. I understand that they need to concentrate these movies on children as well I get that things I like about this movie is it one scene where you see little Toto he is crawling around on the kitchen floor and a cleaver falls and almost catching him in the head it blows fire on) then you know it’s Gamera it is as you can see the cleaver is reminiscence of Guiron from the Showa series movies. Another thing I like is when Gamera gets bigger he does have a nice look for a turtle.

And you can see in his eyes and his face is very friendly not like that Gamera three. He doesn’t have all of his powers until he swallows a Redstone. Zedus is one of those monsters that does not impress me because I think he is rather boring it away and not as much of a threat as the monsters in the past that Gamera deal with. I think it is because Toto or Gamera is still a baby here so the actual monster does not need to be threatening.

The design of Zedus is cool and he is lizardlike. What I didn’t like about the movie was the fact that it is child friendly that’s a little something to do with it. What really determine how about the movie is this first year old Gamera that design is a no no. It is absolutely horrible what they did to Gamera and what upsets me most about this is Gamera does not have his signature roar. Big mistake there.

Closing Statement

If you are into childhood friendly Gamera thing going and what this movie it really isn’t that. He does growing in stages so his design does change throughout the movie, but if you appreciate the Heisei Series Gamera movies and guess what you will be seriously disappointed in this movie. If you like the serious side of Gamera stay away from this one.

Gamera: Revenge of Iris/irys 1999 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

Email Address – bbuckley@triad.rr.com


g3poster

Movie Information 

  • Directed by Shusuke Kaneko
  • Produced by Miyuki Nanri, Naoki Sato, Tsutomu Tsuchikawa
  • Studio Daiei Film
  • Release Dates March 3, 1999 (Japan)
  • Running Time 108 Min.

Synopsis

Movie opens in an equatorial Jungle in 1999. The ornithologist from Gamera: Guardian of the Universe, Nagamine is escorted to a remote jungle village. There she finds the remains of a young Gyaos rotting in the sun and being beaten by the mother the monster’s last meal. Ngamine now realizes that the Gyaos are back.

Segue to a submarine expedition off Okintorishima, Japan’s southernmost point. A research team piloting the robotic submarine, Kaiko, finds dozens of Gamera shells resting on the ocean floor. The team realizes that Gamera is neither unique nor the first of its kind to tread upon Japan.

At this point the title credits roll and feature flashbacks to action sequences seen in Gamera: Guardian of the Universe. The action then segues back to the pivotal battle in that movie between Gamera and Gyaos.  A professional photographer carries his daughter into the family car and then rushes back into their apartment to retrieve his wife. The father finds his wife trying to get the family cat, Irys out from under the bed.

The cat rushes out of the bed and into the living room, where she finds her husband recklessly taking photos of the battle between Gamera and Gyaos going on right outside their living room window. His indulgence turns out to a fatal mistake as Gamera is hurled into the building, destroying it before the daughter’s horrified eyes. Her last conscious moment is watching the Gamera looming over the freshly made tomb of her parents.

Open eyes wake the girl, Hirasaka, from the nightmares of her past, into the misery of her present. Hirasaka is living in the remote town of Minami Asuka, Nara Prefecture with her brother and uncle. She is very unhappy without her parents and continues to blame Gamera for her misfortune. Her uncle wants Hirisaka to move on and change her name to his family name. She does not want to do this at all.

Segue to military/corporate building where we see two mysterious figures, a man and woman, escorted into a classified storage area. Here the pair are shown several comma-shaped jewels collected by the Japanese government during Gamera’s visit to Sendai during Gamera 2: Advent of Legion. All of the jewels are decayed (perhaps because they need to be in proximity to either Gamera or the individual to whom Gamera is telepathically linked),

Segue to Ryuseicho temple where some girls dare Hirisaka to find a magic stone contained in the temple. If she finds the stone, they will leave her brother alone. Hirisaka finds the stone, which has markings that look similar to Gamera and another strange monster. The stone glows when she touches it. A boy, Moribe, comes on the scene and tells the other girls to shove off. Moribe meets up with Hirisaka, and tells her that she needs to return the stone she took.

Moribe tells his female friend, Miyuke, to stay put. Moribe and Hirisaka carry the Gamera stone back into the cave. Moribe explains that his family’s duty is to be guardians of the temple ruins and to safeguard the very stone Hirisaka has disturbed. The two try to replace the stone but it is too heavy and falls from their grasp, causing a strange wailing sound to issue from deep inside the temple. Hirisaka and Moribe look around and find a strange egg-shaped stone at the back of the temple. All the strange happenings freak out the young couple, who hasten out of the temple.

Her curiosity aroused, Hirisaka asks her cousin about the Ryuseicho. The cousin obliges her, relating to her a portion of Chinese mythology that tells of a Guardian of the South, Ryuseicho. The guardian is aligned with the constellation Hydra, the water snake. Her cousin tells her that a turtle (Gamera) guards the North, a tiger guards the West, and a dragon guards the East. Her cousin tells her that the Guardian of the South is the enemy of the Guardian of the North. This fact interests Hirisaka a great deal.

Segue to Tokyo, where Nagamine returns home and receives a mysterious package from a Shinya Kurata in Kyoto. Bird Lady also receives word from Kobayashi to go to the Monster Damage Control Committee meeting. Walking to the meeting, Nagamine encounters someone who reminds her strongly of the detective she worked with in Gamera: Guardian of the Universe, Osako. The man denies he is Osako and moves on.

Segue to Minami Asuka, Nara Prefecture. Moribe tries to start up a conversation with Hirisaka’s brother. Moribe learns that his parents accompanied Hirisaka into Tokyo from another town to be with her while she had her appendix taken out. So Hirisaka blames herself (and Gamera) for her parents’ deaths. Hirisaka shows up and puts a quick end to the personal history research. Moribe tries to tell Hirisaka not to hate Gamera, that the big turtle is a friend to humanity. Hirisaka tells Moribe to tell her dead parents that Gamera is a friend of humanity.

Segue to the Tokyo and the Monster Damage Control Committee. Nagamine finds the interior minister, another face from Gamera: Guardian of the Universe, at the proceedings. The minister points out the mysterious woman, Mito Asakura, to Nagamine. Turns out that she is the government’s chief “fortune teller”. Segue to evening in the Shibuya district of Tokyo. Osako is hanging out with some other homeless people. Fireballs from Gamera lighting up the sky shatter his rest. Gamera is in pursuit of a Gyaos and unleashes a barrage of fireballs at the beast.

One fireball connects with Gyaos and it plummets into Shibuya, destroying a hotel. Gamera lands in pursuit, and goes after Gyaos with no regard for the people dying all around. Gamera incinerates the stricken Gyaos with a fireball that incinerates everything for a radius of several blocks. A second Gyaos arrives on the scene and attacks Gamera. Gyaos’ sonic beam obliterates several buildings. Amidst the chaos, a small boy is about to be killed by Gyaos’ sonic beam. Gamera shields the boy from the attack and obliterates the Gyaos with a fireball. Chunks of burnt Gyaos fall on Shibuya while the boy tearfully wonders if Gamera is good after all.

News reports flood in about the damage caused by Gamera’s battle with Gyaos. Hirisaka watches these reports and they confirm everything she knows is wrong with Gamera. Casualties hovering between 15-20 thousand people, high-level meetings on Gamera, military mobilizations, all these confirm Gamera as a threat that must be stopped. Hirisaka thus goes back to the Ryuseicho temple ruins, hoping to find something that can be used against Gamera. What Hirisaka does find is a strange jewel shaped like a comma that glows when she touches it, eliciting a strange sound from the surrounding cave.

Segue to Moribe being told by his grandmother that he will one day be guardian of the Ryuseicho and that it must be safeguarded at all costs. Moribe’s grandmother tells him that the Ryuseicho will bring great disaster and sorrow upon Japan if it released. However, nothing should happen as long as the guardian stone remains in place within the temple. Barring the stone, his only defense against the monster is a 10” dagger kept near the shrine.

The dagger can kill the Ryuseicho. He hasn’t quite told her that he has already failed miserably at his task. Moribe then follows a sinking suspicion back to the temple ruins and finds Hirisaka cuddling the infant Ryuseicho. Moribe’s desire to kill the young monster is curtailed by Hirisaka’s affection for the monster, which she names Irys.

Back in Tokyo, Nagamine decides to investigate the mysterious disk sent to her. The disc is a Dreamcast game that simulates environmental effects and civilizations. Shinya Kurata programmed the game. The game revolves around mana, or the planetary life force. The Gyaos attack Japan when it is low in mana, as it was in 1995 and is now in 1999.

Segue to Kyoto, where Shinya Kurata gets a call from Mito Asakura, who tells him that the Japanese government has authorized Gamera’s destruction. Segue to the Ryuseicho shrine, where Moribe I pulling out the 10” dagger to take care of Irys, when Hirisaka shows up with food for Irys.

Moribe confronts Hirisaka about Irys. Hirisaka tells Moribe that Irys and she are very much alike; both have had their families destroyed by Gamera. Moribe, chastened, grudgingly leaves Irys alone. Later, Hirisaka goes to visit Irys, but finds no sign of the creature. Hirisaka chases after Iris and finds the creature wasting away in the forest. Hirisaka comforts Irys, who seems to immediately grow stronger from the attention. Irys then enfolds Hirisaka into an embrace and the two proceed to bond symbiotically.

Segue to the Tokyo Natural History museum. Nagamine meets up with Asagi and the two compare notes on Gamera’s recent activities. Asagi also mentions the mysterious life force “mana”, relating to Nagamine that modern industrial nations drain mana from the earth and this attracts monsters like Gyaos and Legion.

Segue to the Ryuseicho shrine. Hirisaka’s family discovers that she is missing at dinner. They call Moribe to check in. This prompts Moribe to check out the temple ruins to see if anything is amiss. Something is very wrong there. Irys has drawn Hirisaka into a cocoon and is merging with her. Moribe uses the 10” dagger to cut the umbilicus and free Hirisaka. Unfortunately, Hirisaka remains comatose and needs to be sent to the hospital.

Segue to Kyoto, where Shinya Kurata listens to reports of more Gyaos attacks and news of a typhoon approaching Kyoto. Back in Tokyo, Nagamine reconnects with Osako. Osako relates how his life went down the tubes after his encounters with Gyaos and Legion. Nagamine and Osako watch TV report of Gyaos sighting near Minami Asuka in Nara prefecture. Osaki offers to help Nagamine and she immediately accepts his offer.

Nagamine and Osaki visit Nara and find widespread destruction. Unfortunately, the dead do not seem to be victims of a Gyaos attack. Nagamine and Osako learn that phone lines were cut near Ryuseicho temple, so they set off to investigate the temple. The pair visits the shrine and finds the remains of Irys’ birth. Nagamine send the tissue samples off to the National Genetic Research Laboratory to determine if the tissue comes from Gyaos, or another monster. Osako thinks the tissue may come from a new monster.

Just then, Moribe comes running up to the shrine and they learn about Hirisaka’s coma from him. Nagamine and Osako go to the hospital to see Hirisaka, accompanied by Asagi. They immediately notice the jewel on Hirisaka’s chest. Asagi is shocked at Hirisaka’s jewel telling Nagamine that it is like hers but black and larger in size. Nagamine questions Hirisaka’s doctor, who tells her that Hirisaka has an enlarged hippocampus, the brain organ that deals with memory and emotion.

Hirisaka and her condition come to the attention of Shinya Kurata and Mito Asakura. Nagamine get email from her geneticist friend, Sakurai. He tells her that Irys’ chromosomes are not related to Gyaos at all. Headlines appear in newspapers @ Gyaos appearing all over the work. Osako tells Nagamine he wants to question Moribe some more. Suddenly, Hirisaka’s brother shows up and tells Nagamine that Hirisaka has been taken away from hospital to Kyoto.

Segue to Kyoto, where Mito Asakura checks in on the comatose Hirisaka performing a ceremony where she invokes Irys against Gamera. This wakes up both Hirisaka and Irys, who then attacks and kills some campers in Nara.

Nagamine gets a call from the Interior minister, who reveals the location of Hirisaka and Mito Asakura. Nagamine and Asagi travel to Kyoto and are met by Shinya Kurata. They learn that she is linked to Irys and controls Irys. Shinya Kurata continues, telling Nagamine and Asagi how the Gyaos serves a noble purpose, weed out the human populations and restoring mana to the Earth. Nagamine and Asagi do NOT agree with Kurata’s worldview. Shinya Kurata goes on to say how Gamera is an earth vessel and how Gamera should satisfy the needs of the planets more than the needs of man. Kurata believes Gamera does not do this because it is still connected to mankind.

Segue to Nara prefecture, where a GSDF platoon discovers Irys. Irys discovers the GSDF platoon. Irys proceeds to annihilate the platoon in short order.

Segue to Kyoto; Nagamine and Asagi confront Asakura about Hirisaka. Nagamine then proceeds to liberate Hirisaka from Mito Asakura. Osako finds a moribund Moribe sitting alone outside the Ryuseicho temple. Osako tells Moribe to get off his ass and to go to Kyoto if he wants to help her. Nagamine, Asagi and Hirisaka arrive in downtown Kyoto, just as a typhoon hits.

Irys goes airborne and flies toward Kyoto. Irys is picked up by a JSDF AWAC plane, which dispatches JSDF fighter jets. Planes engage Irys but are too slow to hit Irys. Irys closes in on the jets with its tentacles, but ceases it attack with Gamera’s arrival. The two monsters battle in midair. Irys hits Gamera with its tentacle beams while Gamera pummels Irys with his saucer attack. As Irys is hurt, Hirisaka recoils in sympathetic pain. The JSDF intervenes in the battle, firing Patriot missiles at Gamera. These impact, letting Irys escape, but do no damage to Gamera. Gamera races off in pursuit of Irys, who approaches Kyoto. As Gamera approaches Kyoto, the girls encounter Shinya Kurata and Mito Asakura.

Shinya Kurata tells Nagamine, Asagi, and Hirisaka that Irys was created to destroy mankind before Gyaos could. Shinya also predicts Gamera’s defeat at the hands of Irys and that Irys will merge with Hirisaka to become even stronger. Hirisaka senses Irys’ arrival in Kyoto. Irys lands in Kyoto during the typhoon, like some dark god brought to life, and heads toward Kyoto train station – and Hirisaka. Shinya Kurata notes how Hirisaka moves to a balcony to be close to Irys as it approaches her. Mito Asakura looks on and he comments that, although she has the blood of a priestess like Asagi and Hirisaka, her bloodline is too thin to control Irys.

Gamera arrives in Kyoto and rains fireballs down upon Irys, who brushes the attacks aside and turns Kyoto into a raging inferno in the process. Gamera flies by Irys, lands and then moves on Irys. The two monsters face off. Irys is the bigger of the two. As the typhoon subsides, the battle begins. Moribe and Osako arrive in Kyoto and rush towards Kyoto train station, while Gamera and Irys battle one another.

Hirisaka feels the advantage is hers in this battle and orders Irys to kill Gamera. Irys complies by running Gamera through with an arm spike. As Gamera lies impaled on Irys’ arm, Nagamine and Asagi plead desperately with her for Gamera’s life. Mito Asakura then snatches away Hirisaka’s necklace, severing her link with Irys. Mito tries to control Irys herself, but cannot seem to do it. Finally, she manages to compel Irys to withdraw its arm spike from Gamera, but in so doing lets Gamera fall on Kyoto station, and her.

Shinya Kurata also dies at this moment. Gamera and Irys stumble through Kyoto station, destroying it. With Gamera fallen, a triumphant Irys meets up with Hirisaka once more, while Moribe tries desperately to get above Irys to hit him with the 10” dagger. Irys opens itself up to Hirisaka and invites her in. With no other option, Moribe hurls his dagger at Irys. The weapon bounces harmlessly off Irys, but hits Hirisaka, breaking her trance. Too late, she realizes that being sucked into Irys is a bad idea – as she is sucked into Irys. 

All is well with Irys until Gamera rises up yet again and attacks. Irys responds by slamming Irys against the wall of Kyoto station and impaling Gamera’s hand. Then Irys beings to drain Gamera’s life force from the wound it has created. Realizing that death is imminent, Gamera sacrifices its own hand by blowing it off to deny Irys power.

The confusion caused by this act of self-sacrifice allows Gamera to shove its good claw into Irys and remove Irys’ heart (Hirisaka). Meanwhile Asagi tries desperately to free Nagamine from wreckage in Kyoto station. Irys then readies a killing attack on Gamera with its tentacles. Irys fires on Gamera, but Gamera catches the blast in the stump of its hand and drives the energy right back into the exposed chest cavity of Irys.

This reflected energy shatters Irys from the inside out, along with the rest of Kyoto Train station. The girls are protected from the blast by Gamera’s bulk. Nagamine, Asagi and Moribe recover to find Gamera happily stomping on the smoking innards of Irys. Gamera returns a dying Hirisaki to Nagamine and Asagi. The girls try to revive Hirisaki but are unable to keep her from slipping away. Asagi looks up and pleads to Gamera to help Hirisaki.

Gamera accedes, bringing vitality back into Hirisaki with its mighty roar. Hirisaka revives, to the amazement of Nagamine and Asagi and the joy of Moribe. Hirisaka knows NOW that Gamera is not her enemy and not the cause of her parent’s deaths. Gamera moves away from Kyoto Station.

Segue to JSDF headquarters, where reports indicate thousands of Gyaos are descending upon Japan. The JSDF (FINALLY) orders attack orders switched from Gyaos to Gamera. With one last bellow, Gamera sets off through the flames of Kyoto to do battle with the Gyaos horde – mortally wounded, alone. Perhaps for its last battle.

What I like about This Movie

I have to say that this movie is perhaps the most technologically sound out all of the Heisei Series movie. No storyline it does come up short I really didn’t care too much for the storyline and then not saying it’s the worst, but it leaves you hanging just don’t know what happens to Gamera when all the Gyao show up recover in the last movie Gamera messes up the Earth’s energy and now everything is out of whack.

What I like about this movie clearly the suit is the best looking suit of all the Gamera. It has such an evil look than it looks really impressive. Let’s talk about Irys he goes through many stages and she is considered an abnormal or different version of a Gyaos. Like I said earlier many different stages to her final form truly awesome. What I didn’t like about the movie I would have to say I didn’t care too much for the storyline.

Closing Statements

This is a really good movie when it comes to special effects and sound as well. Gamera just looks truly awesome in this and this new monster Irys she does stand apart from all the other once that is for sure. The actual movie goes like this a young girl named Ayana is pissed off at Gamera because in the movie Gamera: Guardian of the Universe 1995 seems to her that Gamera till her parents. In this scene you see a completely different Gamera and it is called Trauma Gamera or Nightmare Gamera this is totally bad ass. I would love to see them doing movie with this suit it would be awesome if they get the storyline right.

Anyway she has a connection with Irys forces Irys to try to kill Gamera however we all know that’s not at work. Towards the end of the movie she realizes that her anger has consumed her rational thinking. Realizes that Gamera is a good guy and all is well in the end. This is one of the best of the best if you watch all of the Heisei Series Gamera movies then you definitely add this one to the list. In the end of the movie Gamera walked out of Kyoto station weary and exhausted with one less arm however you do see a tremendous amount of Gyaos storming in on him. This is where the movie ends however they did not pick up on that in the next movie to me is quite a disappointment because we go back through the child friendly Gamera.

Gamera: Attack of Legion 1996 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

Email Address – bbuckley@triad.rr.com


gvslposter

Movie Information 

  • Directed by Shusuke Kaneko
  • Produced by Miyuki Nanri, Naoki Sato, Yasuyoshi Tokuma, Tsutomu Tsuchikawa
  • Studio Daiei Film
  • Distributed by Toho (Japan) ADV Films (USA)
  • Release Dates July 13, 1996
  • Running Time 100 Min.

Synopsis

The movie starts in space with meteorite showers bombarding the Earth. One large meteor impacts in northern Japan, at Sapporo. A group of amateur astronomers, headed by a woman named Midori Honani, are startled by the meteor’s impact. The meteor strike prompts the mobilization of a disaster response team to investigate the meteor’s effects on the countryside. Colonel Katarese and Hanatani head up the disaster response team.

The team gets onsite and checks out the meteor strike. Col. Katarese and Hanatani are not comforted to learn that the meteor changed direction in midflight to avoid smashing into the earth at full force. The blast from the strike has no pollution or radioactivity. Normal meteors do not exhibit these qualities.

Honani is hanging out back at the Sapporo science center with a colleague. They notice that the phone lines no longer work in the science center and that this has been the case since the meteor landed. But the source of the problem seems distant from where the meteor landed. Honani gets a call from someone describing a green glow to the south. We see a green glow in the Southern skies. Honani then goes to Lake Shikotsu for a closer look with her boss. Honani’s boss talks about unusually intense northern light activity.

Honani’s journey ends when a strong magnetic field kills their car. Honani gets out to take a look around. She runs into Katarese and Hanatoni. They find Honani and her boss’ info about the strange electromagnetic fields very interesting. Honani posits the idea that the meteorite moved and notes how strange it is that the meteorites all bee-lined towards earth. Then Katarese’s lighter goes crazy when he tries to light a cigarette.

A couple of days pass, Katarese and Hanatani investigate strange goings on at a beer bottling plant. A guard there reports exploding bottles and a strange monster. At the NTT Sapporo network operation center, the management team can only watch helplessly as someone (or something) destroys their fiber optic network. By the next day it seems that cables are being removed, not destroyed. Honani notes that this activity started in the south and moved north. It is concluded that the meteor might be playing a role in recent events.

Honani gets call #2, it’s Katarese and he wants her help. They visit the glass factory together and she confirms her theory that something is moving north from Lake Shikotsu. the security guard relates a story that he saw a crab-like creature eat the glass bottles. We find that this same guy used to be a police detective who saw Gyaos in Gamera: Guardian of the Universe. Analysis of the glass at the beer factory come ins. Seems as if the glass was chemically dissolved into silicon powder.  Honani mourns all the threats Japan has to face and voices her suspicion that this threat is probably extra-terrestrial.

The next day the scene changes to a subway station in Sapporo Odori subway Station. A train runs suddenly into rubble on the track. The conductor stops the train and sees monsters surround his train. The monsters then dissolve the glass windows and attack him & the passengers, killing them. But the monsters only take glass.  The military arrives on the scene. Cordons off the station. Katarese and Hanatani show up. A military team descends into the tunnel to find the missing subway car but are instead attacked by monsters and many are killed. Honani watches the unfolding events on TV with great concern. Then the TV dies. Suddenly a giant plant bursts out of the ground and wraps itself around several buildings.  At the phone network center all systems go offline. Katarese and Hanatani show up for real with the disaster unit.

At the subway, the team descends into the tunnel. Back topside, the military becomes worried that the atmosphere in the tunnel has 4 times the normal amount of oxygen. Katarese and Hanatani go down into the tunnel and  find strange creatures hard at work at  . . . .something . . . A squad member then discovers survivors from the subway and the team gets them out, but are left puzzling over  why some people were attacked and others were spared. Katarese and Hanatani are called into active duty and report their current findings. Hanatani reports that the creatures are increasing oxygen levels to a point where people cannot survive, Katarese says that the creatures must die for humanity to live. Segue to Honani who compares the creatures & pod to leaf cutter ants and the mushrooms the ants grow. She tells this to Katarese.

Nighttime in Sapporo. The plant flowers, prompting the JSDF to attack the flower. The JSDF sets up camp and evacuates Sapporo. JSDF then plants explosives on the plant roots. Honani and the science team do a simulation of the blast damage from a detonation of the O2 contained in the flower. They think that the flower will launch a pod, creating an explosion the blast would be comparable to an A-Bomb, a 6km blast radius. The flower gets ready to burst. Nearby on the Sanriku coast, a helicopter patrols the shoreline.

Checking out a strange contact the helicopter is nearly destroyed when Gamera bursts from the ocean. In Sapporo, JSDF blows the tunnel. This causes the plant to lose life and restore power. Gamera is sighted approaching Sapporo. JSDF moves to attack aliens. Gamera arrives. “Cool effects on body” Gamera beelines towards the plant. Gamera blasts the flower pod to bits with a fireball. Gamera then attacks and overturns the plant body before hitting it again with a fireball. The creatures in the subway then swarm out and engulf Gamera. The small  creatures wound Gamera seriously. Gamera stumbles about until flying away. Katarese gives a name to the strange menace:

“And he asked him, “What is thy name?” And he answered, saying . . . “My name is Legion. For we are many. “

A transformer draws off the bugs until Gamera can retract his body and saucer away. Gamera’s blood splashes off Honani.  A giant Legion then emerges from the rubble and flies off to the South. JSDF jets chase in pursuit and, apparently, shoot the giant Legion from the sky. News reports tell of the battle and how dead Legion litter the seashore where Gamera retreated into the water. The JSDF is desperate to find out any information on Gamera, so Honani points them to Asagi, the girl telepathically linked to Gamera. Katarese and Honani attend a dissection of the alien Legion. At the operation they discover that the Legion have a hard shell but are hot air beneath it all.

Katarese, Obitsu and Honani meet at Honani’s place. They compare notes on Legion: that Legion is a gaseous creature; that Big Legion is probably still alive; that Legion’s skin is a semiconductor. Legion is made of silicon. Making silicon produces oxygen. This explains the high O2 levels and missing glass. Legion creates silicon to make O2 for its pod and the O2 powers pod launch into space. Legion is made of silicon, a  semiconductior. But why build in cities? Honani then gives the men a drink. And they guess that Legion communicates electro-magnetically.

Radio signals drive them crazy, so large sources of electricity, cities seem like enemy nests. “Cute reference to Gamera: GOTU with a shot of the downed Tokyo Tower”. From JSDF headquarters in Tokyo we segue to a Pachinko parlor in Sendai where dead Legion are discovered. Katarese is sent to Sendai. Obitsu and Hanimani check out the Pachinkco Parlo. They see lots of dead Legion. The next morning, a pod flowers at Sendai Station. The city is then evacuated for 6KM radius in case of a pod detonation. News reports telll of a mass exodus of Sendai. Katarese sends Honani to Kasuminome airfield at Sendai.

The airfield is suddenly attacked by Giant Legion.  The last evacuation helicopter with Asagi and Honani cannot take off because of the turbulence of Legions emergence. Gamera appears and protects Asagi.  Legion begins fighting Gamera to delay the turtle long enough for the seed pod to launch. Gamera distracts Giant Legion long enough for the helicopter to get away, but gets a big can of whoop ass applied in the process. Katarese tells his commander that the city is lost and that they should flee. With Gamera seemingly vanquished, Legion leaves.

Gamera, wounded, gets back up and continues on. Katarese sees Gamera go towards the center of Sendai and towards the flower. Gamera destroys the flower, but is too late to stop the seed pod blast. So Gamera throws itself on the seed pod to prevent it from launching. The resulting explosion obliterates Sendai and, seemingly, Gamera as well. “Awesome effects when Sendai goes boom” Cool snippets ensue from world papers, including times.

At JSDF HQ the mood is grim. Tokyo is threatened. Don’t know how or when Legion will attack. Honani suggests Legion cannot reproduce until a seed is launched. Gamera has stopped them twice but now seems dead. HQ resolves to defend Tokyo at all costs. Shot of Gamera’s battered copse. Segue to Obitsu as he learns that small legions are attracted to a certain type of electromagnetic wave. Segue to Tokyo and an announcement from the Prime Minister. He states that Tokyo is next target of Legion. The fight against Legion is vital to nation’s survival. He invokes JSDF Article 9 that authorizes deployment of armed forces. Several “Top Gun” shots of the JSDF Tank forces.

More news reports. Japanese helicopter report. More JSDF tank love shots. Honani helps Asagi go to Sendai to try and revive Gamera. Helicopters find Giant Legion traveling underground. At JSDF headquarters, the brass plan more attacks on Legion. Obitsu goes to command center and gets promised a drink after the battle by Hanatani. More JSDF tank love shots. Mt. Akayuki. Sendai Station now, as children gather with Asagi near Gamera. Their thoughts and Gamera’s sigil are employed to revive the stricken turtle.

At Mt. Akayuki, Legion emerges from underground. JSDF opens fire. Legion retorts. Tanks die. Back at Sendai Station, the prayers of the children and the sigil of Asagi fuse to create a coruscation of energy. Segue to Mt. Akayuki, where Giant Legion rakes the tank regiments with blistering death rays. Facing tank losses of over 50%, the military commander withdraws the tanks and calls instead for jets to bomb Giant Legion. Giant Legion then releases a swarm of Legion towards Tokyo at over 150MPH. At Sendai, the combined force the children’s prayers and Asagi’s sigil re-energize Gamera.  “Cool Resurrection scene” Gamera revives and takes off towards Tokyo.

Gamera flies off in flipper mode. Machine guns cut down some of the approaching swarm. Gamera joins battle with Giant Legion, by landing and unleashing a flurry of fireballs on the monster. Legion uses a force shield to deflect the fireballs and recalls the Legion swarm to attack Gamera. Obitsu commandeers a power station in a desperate bid to divert the Legion swarm. Obitsu gets the power station running and the signal draws the swarm away from Legion, much to the creature’s dismay. HQ dispatches helicopters to destroy the Legion swarm, drawn to the power station. Meanwhile, Gamera fights Giant Legion. Big Legion pins Gamera on the ground and prepares to blow Gamera’s head off. A quick burst of Gamera’s jets blows Giant Legion’s shot off course. Giant Legion approaches the 2nd Japanese defense line with Gamera still trying to stop him.

“It is confirmed that Gamera seems to be trying to stop Giant Legion.”

Segue Nasaki transmitting station. Obitsu arrives as the swarm is clustered around the power lines. Obitsu checks inside the power station, while Katarese arrives at the power station. Segue to Giant Legion kicking Gamera’s ass. Gamera’s steadfast defense of Tokyo prompts the military commander to issue the following order:

“Order all forces to fire on Giant Legion and support Gamera”.

JSDF launches missiles at Giant Legion, who stops some, but gets hit enough to lose some arms and the shield power. This allows Gamera to score a hit on Giant Legion with a fireball. Stunned, Giant Legion now gets slapped around by a very pissed Gamera. Segue to power station. Attendant is cursing Obitsu for commandeering power station. Both men are almost killed by a stray Legion. The creature is dispatched by Katarese. Katarese informs Obitsu that he has come with anti-tank helicopters to finish the Legion swarm. Anti-tank helicopters then destroy the swarm. Gamera rushes Giant Legion while it is confused and manages to rip off its power horn.

This REALLY hurts Giant Legion. Giant Legion revives though, and hits Gamera with some sort of energy whip. Giant Legion uses this new weapon to punch Gamera through Tokyo’s final defense line. Segue to power station where tank helicopters blow up swarm. The swarm’s death injures and confuses Giant Legion. This allows Gamera to get back up off the ground and use its final weapon, where Gamera draws upon the life energy of Earth itself and fires it out reflex-gun style as Giant Legion approaches. Giant Legion is then literally blown away by Gamera’s power blast.

The enemy toasted, Gamera flies away as the JSDF soldiers salute the turtle. Asagi, her bond with Gamera sacrificed to save the turtle, bids her friend a tearful goodbye. Segue to Sapporo where Obitsu and Honani walk together and talk about Gamera. Honani says Gamera protects the earth not necessarily man and warns us not to get on wrong side of the conflict.

What I Think about This Movie

Legion regardless of what anyone says he did is Gamera toughest opponent to date. The reason I say this is because all through the movie Gamera has tried to stop Legion, but has failed. Gamera has thrown everything and Legion, but she manages to keep coming until the end.

This is because the armor how to use a different energy force to destroy Legion is call earth Mana which is an energy that surrounds the entire planet and keep things in balance. After using this energy in the next movie the balance is upset. Things I like about this movie obviously Legion fantastic design here. The many weapons of Legion and her swarm are another thing that is high on the list and put a hurting on Gamera. The negatives about this movie I really can’t recall any because this is my favorite Gamera movie from the Heisei Series. My favorite Gamera suit is that of Gamera three.

Trivia: I have a small amount of trivia for the movie Gamera vs Legion 1996

March 11, 2001, there is a lot more irony in the girls standing in front of Sendai Station and saying that New York is dangerous. In fact, the whole Sendai destruction sequence is somewhat disturbing.

Goofs

The “My name is Legion” quote is from Mark 5:9, not Mark 9:8 as claimed by one of the soldiers (in the dubbed DVD version)

Closing Statements

I have to say that I am quite impressed with this movie and everything about it seems that Shesuke Kaneko is by far the best director when it comes to making Kaiju movies. With the exception of Ishiro Honda and some others that are atop that list. It seems that each and every time that he does a Gamera movie he does get better however the third one the storyline does slip a little bit what the special effects are top-notch. This movie if you haven’t seen it you need to see is that good.

Gamera: Guardian of the Universe 1995 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

Email Address – bbuckley@triad.rr.com


ggotuposter

Movie Information 

  • Directed by Shusuke Kaneko
  • Produced by Hiroyuki Kato, Shigeru Ohno, Yasuyoshi Tokuma, Tsutomu Tsuchikawa, Seiji Urushido
  • Studio Daiei Film
  • Distributed by   Toho (Japan) ADV Films (USA)
  • Release dates March 11, 1995
  • Running time 100 min.
  • Country Japan

Synopsis

A transport ship, the Kairyu-Maru, is plying the waters of the South Pacific ocean, carrying over a ton of plutonium waste to a disposal site in Japan. The Kairyu-Maru is escorted by a Maritime Safety Agency Patrol boat Najima, piloted by a man named Yonemori. Suddenly, the Kairyu-Maru runs aground – not strange except for the fact the ship is in the Phillipines Deep, where the bottom of the ocean is 6000 feet down. Radar shows the object the Kairyu-Maru hit is a drifting reef, which then suddenly dislodges and floats away. The transport suffers only minor damage, but the incident is reported in several papers, prompting an investigation of the incident by the Maritime Safety Agency.

At Maritime Safety HQ, Yonemori is questioned about the incident by the head investigator, Dr. Kusanagi. While Dr. Kusanagi assures Yonemori that the accident was not his fault and that no damage occurred, Yonemori nonetheless feels very shamed by the incident. Yonemori further implores Dr. Kunasagi to include him on the Yasu Marine Investigation team,which will go searching for the floating reef. Dr. Kunasagi is noncommittal about including Yonemori in the mission. Segue to Fukuoka Municipal Zoo, where a Professor Hirata is the presiding ornithologist. His assistant, Nagamine is conducting research while Prof. Hirata is away at Himegama Island to investigate reports of giant birds. Segue to Himegama Island, engulfed in a typhoon. A sailor and policeman desperately try to flee the island, but are killed by an unknown enemy.

Segue to a residential neighborhood outside Fukuoka, Yonemori visits a local grocer’s shop to get some liquor as a gift to present to Dr. Kunasagi when he pays the Dr. a housecall. By chance, Dr. Kunasagi’s daughter, Asagi, is at the store shopping and not only recommends a good bottle of liquor, but also takes Yonemori back home with her. Dr. Kunasagi arrives home to find Yonemori cooking for him with Asagi looking on bemused. Dr. Kunasagi resigns himself to Yonemori’s persistence and tells the man that he has found a position for Yonemori on the Yasu Marine Investigation.

Yonemori is visibly elated by the news. The next day the pair embarks on the research ship Kenzaki to search for the floating reef. Segue to Fukuoka Municipal Zoo, a police detective informs Nagamine that Dr. Hirata and the inhabitants of Himegama Island have been missing now for several days. When the detective mentions that “a giant bird” was involved, Nagamine’s interest is piqued enough to compel her to accompany the detective to Himegama island. Nagamine and the police detective search the island for clues as to what happened to the inhabitants. All Nagamine finds is a giant animal dropping pellet – containing Dr. Hirata’s pen and glasses.

Brief segue to the Kenzaki, where Yonemori finally strikes gold and discovers the strange, floating reef.

Back at Himegami island, Nagamine and the police search futher and discover the source of the giant pellet is discovered – a giant, birdlike creature. Nagamine and the detective race after the creature in a helicopter, hoping to track it and warn the mainland of the creature’s imminent arrival. The Air Traffic Controller at Nagasaki airport thinks the detective’s story is crazy, but puts out a general warning nevertheless. Nagamine manages to get the creatures’ attention with the helicopter, but the giant avian almost destroys the helicopter before Nagamine fends it off by stunning it with camera flashes.

Before peeling away, Nagamine discovers 2 other creatures have joined the first flying above Himegami Island. Newspapers and television shows broadcast news of the strange, new, birdlike creatures.

Segue to the research ship Kenzaki, where the Yasu team is studying the floating reef closely. They determine the general size of reef and discover that is emitting low levels of radiation. Prof. Hirata directs the team to venture onto the reef and search it. The team discovers strange, comma-shaped symbols on the reef as well as a strange metal object embedded in the reef. Prof. Hirata orders the metal object to be excavated.

Seque back to Japan, where the police detective pleads with Nagamine to meet the Japanese cabinet and to serve as the zoological advisor in the matter of the giant birds. At first unwilling, Nagamine is finally swayed by the earnest detective and proceeds to attend the cabinet meeting on the giant birds. At the meeting, Nagamine meets several cabinet members including environmental agency commissioner Saito. Commissioner Saito has authorized Saito to capture the giant birds, and he wants Nagamine to give him a plan to do it. Nagamine protests that the birds are unknown and dangerous. Saito informs her in no uncertain terms that their decision is final and her cooperation is expected.

Segue to research ship Kenzaki, the Yasu team has successfully excavated the metal statue which has a set of heiroglyphs engraved upon it.

Prof. Hirata prepares to airlift the statue off the reef. Yonemori touches the statue and finds it as warm as a person’s skin. Yonemori’s colleague does the same, and the contact causes the statue to shatter. With the statue destroyed, the reef comes to thunderous life. Yonemori is thrown into the ocean, and glimpses a monster beneath the reef.

Back in Fukuoka, Nagamine and the detective are working late trying to find a way to capture the giant birds. The detective hits upon using Fukuoka baseball stadium to trap the birds while they feed. Nagamine suggests that they use helicopters with strong lights to direct the birds to Fukuoka and then force the birds to the stadium. At the stadium, huge piles of meat will entice the birds to feed. Multiple doses of the sedative succinycholine would then be shot into the birds to sedate them. The Cabinet approves Nagamine’s plan and it is set into motion. As the trap slowly closes in on the bird creatures, however, Yonemori shows up and warns them of a giant monster fast approaching Fukuoka.

Commissioner Saito dismisses Yonemori’s monster to concentrate on capturing the giant birds. The giant birds take the bait and fly down to the floor of Fukuoka stadium to feed on the piles of meat dumped there. Unfortunately, the military opens fire on the birds too early and one manages to escape. A military helicopter tracks the beast, until a giant monsters burst forth from Fukuoka Bay and smashes the giant bird into an oil refinery, where it is incinerated.

The monster Yonemori mentioned has arrived and makes a beeline for the stadium, where the other two giant birds have been placed into cages. The residents of Fukuoka, civilian and military alike flee before the approach of the hulking turtle monster. The monster demolishes part of Fukuoka stadium trying to reach the birds imprisoned there. Sensing an imminent loss of life on their part, the giant birds use sonic beams to break free of their cages and to fly away. The giant turtle monster retreats into its shell and fly’s off in pursuit of the giant birds.  Yonemori and Dr. Hirata have dinner with Asagi and discuss the new monster. Dr. Hirata has translated the heiroglyphs from the statue found on the floating reef and believes the monster to be a creature called Gamera, created by the Atlanteans many years ago to counter a threat called Gyaos – apparently the giant birds.

Yonemori gives Asagi one of the comma-shaped amulets from the reef as a gift. The amulet glows mysteriously when she incants the translation from the statue. Nagamine returns to Himegami Island to learn more about the Gyaos, but only finds cannibalized corpses in the cave which was once their nest. At the next Cabinet meeting, Nagamine reveals that the Gyaos eggs are 10,000 years old and that the Gyaos are all female. Commisioner Saito concludes that Gamera is a bigger menace to society and persists in his desire to capture the giant birds.

The Japanese military is mobilized to locate Gamera, and they concentrate their efforts on the Seto Inland Sea in hopes of locating the giant monster. Sensing the encroaching Japanese military, Gamera flees the area by rocketing into the air and heads towards Kii peninsula. At this same location, Dr. Kusanagi & Yonemori are looking for Nagamine and a research team that is searching the countryside for Gyaos. Coming to a small village, the pair witnesses a mass exodus of people from the village. They stop a villager, who tells them that Nagamine and the research team found Gyaos – an it was hungry. Yonemori rushes towards the area where Nagamine was last seen, only to encounter her on a bridge, fleeing Gyaos with a small child. Nagamine and the child become trapped on the bridge, and Yonemori only manages to put himself in the path of danger. Just as their fate as a Gyaos snack seems sealed, Gamera appears.

The giant turtle roasts Gyaos with a plasma fireball. Unfortunately, a third Gyaos immediately swoops in to avenge the death of its sibling. Gamera takes damage protecting Nagamine, Yonemori and the child from Gyaos’ sonic beam. Gyaos then flees, with Gamera in hot pursuit.  Gamera’s actions prompt Yonemori to state plainly to Dr. Kunasagi that Gamera is on mankind’s side in this fight. Unfortunately, the Japanese parliment disagrees and enacts a bill authorizing the Japanese Self-Defense Force to attack and destroy Gamera. Missiles launched by SDF fighters punish Gamera just as the 3rd Gyaos is about to be destroyed by a plasma fireball. Gamera crashes into the forests surrounding Mount Fuji. Asagi learns of the Japanese parliament vote and SDF attack on the radio.

These actions prompt her to rush off to the battle zone to help Gamera, first by train then later with the help of a slightly loony cab driver. Night falls on Mt. Fuji and Asagi arrives just in time to witness the Japanese SDF launch a full scale bombing and artillery barrage upon Gamera. The ferocity of the SDF attack is so great that Gamera is knocked on its back and rendered temporarily helpless. Gyaos, watching the battle from high above, seizes the opportunity to finish off its greatest foe. Only Asagi’s breathless mental surge to Gamera allows it to jet out of harm’s way, but not before taking some serious beam damage to one of its arms. The SDF realizes belatedly both Gyaos’ surprise attack and Gamera’s jet-powered escape from the battle zone. Asagi then falls unconscious, stricken by the wound she shares with Gamera.

At the hospital, Dr. Kunasagi anxiously waits for his daughter to regain consciousness. Asagi wakes up, but lies in a fevered daze. Dr. Kunasagi tells his daughter that Gamera escaped the SDF and has gone into the sea. This comforts Asagi, who tells him that she and Gamera must rest and strengthen up for the final battle with Gyaos. Asagi then loses consciousness once more.

At yet another high level Japanese military/cabinet meeting, Commissioner Saito and Yonemori spar over whether to kill Gyaos or Gamera. Nagemani recommends that they prepare against both monsters instead of fighting over which monster to kill. After the meeting, Nagemani & Yonemori go to the home of Michiya, a geneticist friend of Nagemani’s who has analyzed Gyaos’ DNA. They learn from Michiya that Gyaos is a biological weapon, an organic construct created through genetic manipulation of animal DNA. They also learn that Gyaos is male/female, hermaphroditic, and thus capable of producing offspring without a mate. It takes little time for them to realize the horror that awaits mankind should Gyaos reproduce. Segue to the forests around Mt. Fuji where Gyaos continues to feed . . . and grow.  Nagamine and Yonemori visit Dr. Kunasagi hoping to use Asagi to contact Gamera, because of her apparent psychic link to the giant turtle.

Dr. Kunasagi strongly rebuffs them suggesting that Asagi’s mental contact with Gamera could get her killed. Sitting together, the three postulate on Gamera and Gyaos’ origins. They believe that Gyaos was created by the Atlanteans thousands of years ago. But Gyaos quickly grew and reproduced out of control. Gamera was created by the Atlanteans to destroy Gyaos but showed up too late in the game to save the Atlanteans. So the Atlanteans put Gamera into hibernation, in the hopes that Gamera would save future generations from Gyaos.   Later, Yonemori and Nagemani hang out at a bar and lament how mankind’s abuses of nuclear energy and the earth have created the very conditions which revived the Gyaos. Segue to Tokyo, a passenger trains becomes the object of some unwelcome interest, namely from Gyaos. The giant bird creature rips a car from the trains and brings it to a park in Tokyo, where it promptly opens up the train and its occupants like canned herrings. The latest atrocity by Gyaos prompts the cabinet to revoke their support of Comm.

Saito’s plan to “capture” Gyaos. Comm. Saito meekly appeals to Nagamine to help them destroy Gyaos. Nagamine advises that they attack Gyaos during the day, when the creature appears weakest. Segue to Tennosu Island Command HQ. From here, the SDF has a clear view of Gyaos resting in the park near Tokyo tower. The SDF plans to use guided missiles to kill Gyaos. Nagamine takes a closer look at Gyaos and is disturbed to find shield plates around Gyaos’ eyes, an apparent adaption to sunlight. Nevertheless, the SDF launches a punishing missile attack on Gyaos that strikes the creature right on target . . . and succeeds only in arousing the creature to angry flight. A second wave of missiles homes relentlessly in on the flying creature. But Gyaos uses these weapons to its advantage, guiding them into Tokyo tower – destroying it and making an ideal nesting site for its burgeoning clutch of Gyaos eggs. As night falls on the ruins of central Tokyo, Gyaos screams its defiance of all mankind.

News reports tell of the creature’s power and of the economic and physical mayhem caused by the creature. Dr. Kusanagi checks on his daughter and his concern revives both Asagi and Gamera. The next morning at Tennosu Island Command HQ, Yonemori and Nagamine wearily wait what may be Tokyo’s last morning. Yonemori asks Nagamine out on a date, if they survive all this. Nagamine is psyched. Suddenly, Dr. Kusanagi and Asagi show up with a message  . . . Gamera is coming. An earthquake suddenly rips through central Tokyo stopping at the base of Tokyo tower.

Gyaos checks the threat out sleepily and then returns its attention to the nest, only to be roused once again by a resurgent Gamera and a plasma fireball wake up call. Gyaos barely escapes incineration, but its clutch of eggs is not so lucky, all of them are destroyed. Gyaos retreats by air with Gamera in hot pursuit firing off plasma fireballs. The blasts don’t touch Gamera, but DO touch large parts of Tokyo’s downtown district. Asagi and the gang chase after the pair of monsters in a military helicopter. Gamera and Gyaos touchdown in Rapongi district and give fierce battle. The two monsters rage back and forth until an ankle blade from Gamera plunges into Gyaos and send the bird creature careening back into a skyscraper.

The building collapses onto Gyaos, prompting it to slice and dice the building with its sonic ray. Gamera takes off in the confusion and goes straight up. Gyaos emerges from the rubble and gives chase. The two creatures move quickly out of sight and out of the atmosphere. As Gyaos stops to get behind Gamera, the giant turtle suddenly turns on Gyaos and bites its leg. Gyaos then plunges back into Earth’s atmosphere dragging Gyaos with it. Re-entry and the descent start to incinerate both monsters. Gyaos fires away madly at Gamera, causing both the turtle and Asagi(much to Dr. Kunasagi’s consternation) many cuts and abrasions. Gamera plunges earthward hoping to destroy Gyaos, even at the cost of its own life. Gyaos finally frees itself from Gamera by severing its own leg, regaining control just as Gamera impacts on an oil refinery.

Gyaos adds to the incendiary chaos, blasting the remaining oil tanks with its sonic beam. Nothing seems to remain in the chaos. Then the flames retreat into the center of the conflagaration, where Gamera feeds off the energy and re-energizes itself. The two monsters square off knowing the next exchange will kill one of them. They wait for the moment to strike. Asagi senses the time to strike and relays it to Gamera. Gyaos makes its move.

A sonic beam and plasma fireball whiz by each other. Gamera gets a scratch. Gyaos loses its head, and falls back dead. Gamera roars in triumph that its enemy is dead and the threat has been vanquished . . . at least until the next batch of Gyaos eggs hatches. Gamera turns to Asagi and heals the wounds she took for Gamera and then turns to the sea to return home. Asagi wishes Gamera well and assures her friends that if the world is in danger, Gamera will come again.

What I like about This Movie

I like so much about this movie that is a serious jump up from the Showa Series that I can’t possibly begin to tell you how much better it is. The Gamera suit awesomely designed Gyaos another great suit and very highly detailed with much more mobility than the original. The fight scenes are top-notch. What I did not like about the movie is nothing everything about this movie to me is great. The storyline, the action scenes, and the ending was refreshingly good to see.

Trivia

  •   The Gyaos creature was performed by a female actress so that it would convey more ‘feminine’ like behavior. Apparently this was the first time a Kaiju was ever performed by a woman.
  • The film’s Japanese poster is a nearly identical recreation of the Japanese poster of the first film in which Gamera fought Gyaos, Daikaijû kûchûsen: Gamera tai Gyaosu.

Closing Statements

Watch this movie now! Is a really good movie and Shesuke Kaneko is perhaps the best suited director for any Kaiju movie. He did the movie GMK: Godzilla, Mothra, King Ghidorah: All-Out Monster Attack. If you have seen this movie and you want to see a Gamera movie that has the same, special effects then the Heisei Series of Gamera movies is a must-see, check this movie out and you see what I mean.

Gamera: Super Monster 1980 Movie Review

Written by Barney Buckley

Email Address – bbuckley@triad.rr.com


gamera 1980poster

Movie Information 

  • Directed by Noriaki Yuasa
  • Produced by Masaichi Nagata, Hirozaki Ohba, Shigeru Shinohara, Yasuyoshi Tokuma, Masaya Tokuyama
  • Distributed by Daiei Film
  • Release Dates March 20, 1980
  • Running Time 92 Min.
  • Country Japan

Synopsis

The opening sequence shows a sequence of space drawings with a voice in the background soliloquizing about the vastness of space and isolation of earth among the heavens. Next, the narrator relates through a series of storyboards the arrival of a giant pirate ship. The star destroye-, I mean, pirate ship then appears onscreen ala “Star Wars”, the evil leader relating to us his intention to destroy Earth.  A woman in a pet store gets a chime alarm from her earring and launches into action, performing some funky aerobic ritual and transforming into a caped SPACEWOMAN! A second woman gets the chime alarm and changes into a spacewoman before flying away.

A third woman, driving an old van, gets the chime alarm and changes the van into a glowing, white, amorphous spaceship. Meeting the pirate ship in space, the spacewomen are confronted by the tyrranical pirate leader. Xanon know about the spacewomen from the Peaceful Star and informs them that nothing they can do will thwart his plans for world domination, and they are warned not to interfere on pain of death.

Conducting a strategic retreat the spacewomen do the strange aerobic ritual to change into their non-detectable human forms and ride around in the now transformed van discussing their helplessness in the face of this intergalactic threat. Xanon wants to ensure that the spacewomen don’t cause any mischeif, so he sends Spacebabe, his leuitenant, down to Earth to locate and destroy the spacewomen. Spacebabe touches down on Earth and assumes the guise of a comely, young earth girl to search for the spacewomen. An earth man hits on her and is electroshocked into submission by SpaceBabe.

Segue to a Japanese household, where young Akiachi is trying to learn how to play the piano and failing, badly. Frustrated by his lack of ability, Akiachi sets off in search of a new pet turtle. Akiachi tries to get a turtle from the local policeman but fails. In a pet shop, Akiachi does manage to convince the spacewoman Kalara to give him a free turtle. Kalara then gets a chime alarm an has to leave Akiachi to go home with his new pet. Kalara changes into spacewoman and rushes to confront Xanon, who rambles on about the natural disasters which will soon befall the Earth.

Then we are treated to some nice stock footage of a volcano erupting, and then some more natural disaster stock footage, and then more stock footage, and then we segue back to more awful piano lessons by Akiachi – AIIIIIGGGGGGHHHH!!!! . . . Can’t . . . watch . . . this . . . film . . . any  . . . longer [I’m back now, the Prozac did wonders.]

Akiachi’s mother intrudes on his piano practice(Ostensibly to kill Akiachi over how bad his piano playing is, but lacking any convenient weapons opts for the more subtle, physchological approach) to chide him to spend less time playing piano and more time studying. While she is at it, Akiachi’s mother gives the boy a guilt trip about keeping his beloved pet turtle captive and forces him to promise to set the turtle free. Akiachi dutifully does his mother’s bidding and we are treated to an emotional farewell scene between Akiachi and his turtle on a riverbank.

On the world front, Gyaos attacks the earth, presumably under pirate control. Stock footage fleshes out appearances of the monster. Spacewoman detects the monster and changes into spacewoman and meets her fellow spacewomen. Spacebabe detects the surge in energy and reports to Xanon for further instructions. Xanon directs Space babe to destroy the spacewomen. Space babe calls down beam fire from the star destroyer, pirate ship!

Spacewomen narrowly escape death, but a spacewoman’s red sports car/spaceship gets trashed. The spacewomen transform back to humans to escape detection. Back at the pet shop, Akiachi shows up to apologize to Kalara for freeing the turtle she gave him. Kalara tells Akiachi, no big deal. Kalara shows Akiachi her pad, and Akiachi thrills Kalara with this piano rendition of the Gamera march.

More pirate activity is detected, the spacewomen try to transform but are detected and fired upon almost immediately. Gamera shows up and proceeds to fight and defeat Gyaos in a series of stock footage outtakes, interspersed with exasperated commentary from Space babe. Akiachi runs into spacebabe and makes the wrong friend. Akiachi confides in space babe that his pet turtle changed into Gamera, Space babe in turn confides in Akiachi that Gamera is going to get its ass kicked. Akiachi doesn’t believe Space babe, and Gamera’s victory confirms his beliefs. Perplexed, space babe moves off to ponder the connection between Gamera and Akiachi.

Looking to test the connection between Gamera and Akiachi, space babe lures Akiachi out to lunch and throws the boy into a space warp that plops Akiachi down in the path of an oncoming Vigras.  During the stock footage battle, space babe exposes her true nature to Akiachi and the boy flees her. Monitoring the battle, Kalara opens a space warp for Akiachi to jump through. Denied her prize, spacebabe can only watch the stock footage destruction of Viras, and plead with Xanon for another chance.  Another shot of little Akiachi in Kalara’s room. Kalara introduces her space woman cohorts, Marsha and Mitan and reveals to Akiachi that they are from the planet of the Peaceful Star.

The spacewomen tell Akiachi that they must leave to fight Xanon. Stock footage of Star Blazers relates this gripping departure. The spacewomen in fact do not leave Earth, but retire instead to the magic van for a good night’s rest. However, space babe has detected their wheels and plants a time bomb under the van. The bomb explodes, obliterating the magic van. Akiachi stares in horror at the blackened space where his new friends once were, only to hear the voices of the spacewomen coming from a red lunchbox.

Turns out that the red lunchbox is their miniature space house and is protected from both Xanon’s bomb and detection system. The spacewomen transform quickly to check out the bomb site and then switch back to go into the lunchbox. Akiachi is charged with getting the red lunchbox, and the spacewomen, back to the petshop. Space babe nearly gets Akiachi in the process.

Kalara uses her magic organ to view Gamera’s battle vs. Jiger. Stock footage recounts Gamera’s 2nd victory against this monster. Space babe manages to plant a remote control device on Gamera, putting the giant turtle under her control. Gamera then proceeds to commit much stock footage destruction mayhem. Kalara tells Akiachi that she will risk her life to free Gamera from alien control. Kalara does the aerobic thing and switches into SPACEWOMAN! Dodging laser blasts from Xanon’s ship, Kalara reaches the probe on Gamera’s neck and manages to trick Xanon into blasting it.

Freed from alien control, Gamera jets off to its next stock footage battle. Spacewoman transforms back to Kalara, only to be confronted by a gun-toting space babe. Kalara and space babe, fight. Kalara donates a can of whoop ass to space babe. Kalara is gracious in victory, lecturing space babe and returning her blaster. Space babe is changed by Kalara’s mercy towards her. Gamera goes to the pirate’s planet (presumably) and fights a re-animated Guiron.

Stock footage relates Guiron’s grisly death at Gamera’s hand in some detail. For his victory, the viewer is treated to stock footage of the anime show “Galaxy Express 999”. Back on Earth, space babe tells Akiachi that she has learned about love from him. Gamera returns to Earth and defeats Baragon in a stock footage battle of epic proportions and predictable ending. This last defeat incites Xanon to attack Earth directly with his pirate ship. First, Xanon will obliterate Akiachi and the spacewomen.

Space babe bravely gives Xanon false coordinates and brings down laser fire on herself to save the spacewomen and Akiachi. In space, Gamera rams into the pirate ship, dying but destroying it in the process. Kalara consoles a grieving Akiachi by telling him that Gamera died to make the world a better place. Kalara then asks Akiachi to fly with her and the other spacewomen. The credits roll as we see Akiachi fly away with Kalara.

What I Think about This Movie

This movie is super loaded with stock footage. The alien women definitely the stupidest part about this movie is the cheesiest of all the Gamera movie. The one thing I do like is the new look of Gamera still has a showa series look about him. That’s the one thing I like about this movie. The rest that I hate.

Trivia

Showa era refers to the giant monster films made between Godzilla and this film. The Heisei era of giant monster films would begin with Godzilla 1985: The Legend Is Reborn but the Gamera series would not be revived for the Heisei era until Gamera: Guardian of the Universe which ignored the previous films.

Made with the intention of pulling production company Daiei out of debt. The film failed at the box office, and Daiei filed for bankruptcy about six months later. The low budget of the film is evidenced by the extensive use of stock footage; all scenes of Gamera battling other monsters are taken from previous films in the series.

Gamera knocks over a billboard at one point in the film. The camera zooms into the billboard, revealing it to be an advertisement for a Godzilla film.

Closing Statements

This is definitely not the best of the series of Gamera movies and this is because 80% of this movie is stock footage which in a sense school if you haven’t seen any of the other movies it does show you the fight scenes with all the other monsters. So you don’t want to pick up the entire collection pick this one up and you will get the highlights of all the movies if you can tolerate the cheesiness of the alien women.