A nuclear explosion in the far north unleashes Gamera, the legendary flying turtle, from his sleep under the ice. In his search for energy, Gamera wreaks havoc over the entire world, and it's up to the scientists, assisted by a young boy with a strange sympathic link to the monster, to put a stop to Gamera's rampage. Written by
Jean-Marc Rocher <email@example.com>
Gamera's debut film and the rise legendary rival of Godzilla as the King of Japanese monster cinema. I'm going to say this right now, but I'm not much of a fan of Gamera's early films. There were a few interesting ones, like "Gamera vs. Gyaos" and "Gamera vs. Barugon", however, the original series went to sh*t at a much faster rate than the showa Godzilla films. 1968's "Gamera vs. Viras" is a staple to that statement and of course the series would only get worse till the 80s film "Gamera: Super Monster". This film isn't as good as "Gamera vs. Gyaos" and "Gamera vs. Barugon", but is far superior to latter entries.
Positive notes, well for his debut, Gamera looks pretty awesome. The city stomping scenes are well done, of course Japanese studios by 1965 having had lots of practice. The pacing is brisk and believe it or not doesn't drag. Most kaiju films have interesting finales and if you haven't seen this one you'll either laugh or sit in awe. Either way good fun. And the score is far from Akira Ifukube quality, with wildly switching moods, but it hold together.
Bad points, eh, too much borrowed from other monster movies. A monster emerging from the ice, obviously lifted from "Beast from 20, 000 Fathoms" and the black and white look of the film is borrowed, if you will, from the original 1954 Gojira. I suppose that's what happens when you come in that lame in the game. Plus the child character kind of grated on my nerves, a true turtle lover all right. The movie takes itself rather seriously with notions of the Cold War as opposed to the 1965 Toho release "Invasion of Astro Monster" which was light-hearted but more memorable. That film had awesome colorful cinematography, the likes of three monsters (Godzilla, Rodan, and King Ghidorah!!" and a fun and yes zany plot. Plus it was scored by the maestro Akira Ifukube. Comparing it to this film isn't really fair, but Godzilla for the win this round.
However, I still highly enjoy the vintage sci-fi and I recommend the movie to classic sci-fi lovers.
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