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Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster (1964)

San daikaijû: Chikyû saidai no kessen (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Adventure, Fantasy | 13 September 1965 (USA)
1:42 | Trailer

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After a meteorite unleashes a three-headed beast upon Tokyo, Mothra tries to unite with Godzilla and Rodan to battle the extraterrestrial threat.





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Cast overview, first billed only:
Yôsuke Natsuki ...
Yuriko Hoshi ...
Hiroshi Koizumi ...
Mas Selina Salno, Princess of Sergina
Emi Itô ...
Dr. Tsukamoto
Akihiko Hirata ...
Chief Detective Okita
Hisaya Itô ...
Malmess, Chief Assassin
Minoru Takada ...
Prime Minister
Someshô Matsumoto ...
Alien Expert
Ikio Sawamura ...
Honest Fisherman
Kôzô Nomura ...
Kenji Sahara ...
Editor in Chief Kanamaki
Susumu Kurobe ...
Moustachoied Assassin


A princess from a small Himalayan country becomes possessed by the spirit of a Venusian (a Martian in the American version) and escapes a plane just as it explodes. As this happens a meteorite falls from the sky containing Ghidorah, the monster responsible for her planet's destruction. At the same time, Godzilla and Rodan emerge from hibernation and not only attack Japan, but each other as well. Mothra, along with its twin priestesses, attempt to convince Godzilla and Rodan to stop their fighting each other and to team up to fight the new monster. At the same time, the princess is being hunted by a group of assassins who want to kill her so that her enemies can take over her homeland. Written by Brian Washington <Sargebri@att.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

rodan | godzilla | mothra | japan | kaiju | See All (212) »


The Three-Headed Monster battles Godzilla, Mothra and Rodan for the world!


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

13 September 1965 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


| (1971 reissue)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Cameo(Furankî Sakai): Man addressing the Diet. See more »


When Mothra disembarks from her "podium" after "chatting" with Godzilla and Rodan, a string is visible around the center of her back for a split second. See more »


[translated version]
Yellow Hoodie Guy: Professor, look, it's getting big again.
Professor Miura: Yes. According to these figures, it's bigger than it was before.
Other Guy: That's impossible. How can a meteorite grow?
Professor Miura: Nevertheless, it's growing.
See more »


Referenced in South Park: Imaginationland: Episode II (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

Shinichi Sekizawa's masterpiece
30 May 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is the seventh kaijyu (monster) movie written by Toho's screen writer Shinichi Sekizawa, and the first to portray the monsters in a comical light which would become Toho's style for the following 10 years. The story differs somewhat between the Japanese version and the American version. This commentary is about the Japanese version.

Princess Mars Dourina Salno (Eiko Wakabayashi) of Sergina requests Japanese police to give her protection due to political instability of her country. Detective Shindo (Yosuke Natsuki) is assigned by his boss Okita (Akihiko Hirata) to body guard the princess, but the plane carrying the princess explodes on its way to Japan. Shortly afterward a woman proclaiming to be from Venus appears and prophecies that Rodan and Godzilla will appear in Japan. Thinking that his assignment was over before it got started Shindo goes home, reads about mysterious Venusian woman who's attracting media's attention looks exactly like princess Mars. Convinced that the self proclaimed "Venusian" is princess Mars, he launches his own investigation. His sister Naoko who is a reporter is also on the heel of the Venusian woman. In the mean time a mysterious asteroid falls in the Kurobe area of Japan. Assistant professor Murai (Hiroshi Koizumi) is the team leader that's sent to investigate the asteroid witnesses the asteroid turning into a three headed monster. Naoko finally catches up with the Venusian woman and escorts her to a near by hotel. By this time assassins from Sergina is also on her trail suspecting that the Venusian woman is princess Mars. They converge at the hotel and shooting ensues between the assassins and detective Shindo. Assassins flees and detective Shindo, and Naoko escorts the Venusian to Dr. Tsukamoto's (Takashi Shimura) lab to see if her memories can be revived. In the mean time Rodan and Godzilla is sited and they converge near Mt. Fuji and starts a battle. Vanusian woman tells a story that 5000 years ago Venus was attacked by the monster King Gidora and was turned into a waste land, and that Gidora is now on earth. Mothra is called to Japan to ask Godzilla and Rodan to fight against King Gidora, but the two monsters aren't exactly interested in helping mankind.

The plot of this movie is superbly written with each element supporting the entire flow of the story. Many die hard Godzilla fans might not like the campy flavor of this movie, but so many elements crammed into this movie that runs just over 90 minutes has intricacies and originality never seen in previous Japanese monster movies. This movie by far has the most intricate plot of movies written by Shinichi Sekizawa, but is hidden behind the tong in cheek humor that runs throughout the movie.

In the US released DVD, three men accuses the Venusian woman as "kichigai" (crazy). The broadcast code in Japan has tightened up since this movie was made and this word is no longer allowed to be used in a movie, so the Japanese DVD has this word changed to another dialog, but you will hear it as it was in the US release DVD. Princess Mars' full name Mars, Dourina, Salno is a play on the Japanese phrase "Ma, sudori, nasaruno" (Are you just going to pass me by ?) and is intended to be an injoke.

You'll get much more out of this movie if you catch the details of the movie. It was the first time Gidora was seen on screen. Gidora became a staple of subsequent movies guaranteeing a crowd draw for Toho.

Watch this movie to see if you can catch the details.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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