A group of thieves carry out a daring jewel robbery, and go to meet their fence in a deserted factory. Unfortunately, they don’t realize that the gangster they’re dealing with plans to rob them. Or that the United States Army has been conducting some rather nasty off-the-books experiments in that old factory. Which, unfortunately, have […]
Read more "Junk: Shiryô-gari [Junk] (2000)"
Honorable Mention How in the world do you even begin to talk about a film like Battle Heater? There are some many things that it is — or almost is — that it’s hard to know where to start. Hama (Akira Enomoto) is an electrician who gathers all sorts of electronic junk, repairs it and […]
Read more "Batoru hîtâ [Battle Heater] (1989)"
(aka Revenge of the Defenders, Daitetsujin Wan-Sebun. Literal Translation: Iron Robot 17) It was such an Eighties thing. Take a Japanese children’s TV series and distill all its weirdness into an hour and a half so you could sell it as a movie. Simple, right? Even when it is 35 half-hour episodes. Well, it’s actually […]
Read more "Brain 17 (1982)"
(aka, Message from Outer Space, Space Ninja) One of the first cloned copies of Star Wars which came out after the release of the George Lucas classic was Message from Outer Space, a strange and colorful Japanese film whose most memorable element was its spaceship in the form of a square-rigged sailing vessel, complete with […]
Read more "Swords of the Space Ark (1981)"
This one wasn’t quite what I was expecting. Or maybe it was. I’m not sure. After all, I’ve been waiting for it a long time. It was announced, supposedly due to be released, delayed, delayed again, and finally came out — in Japan. More waiting. What I expected, when it was first announced, was a […]
Read more "Shin Ultraman (2022)"
It must have been a shock when audiences got their first look at the new Gamera movie that debuted in 1995. After all, it was far more serious than any of the films which came before it — even the first film, which presented the Towering Terrapin as a nearly unstoppable force causing terrible destruction […]
Read more "Gamera 2: Region shurai [Gamera 2: Attack of the Legion] (1996)"
This is the one where Godzilla fights a giant rose. It’s one of those things that is so bizarre that you just have to lead with it. What makes this particularly strange is that this story somehow beat out a script which pitted the Big G against a gigantic super computer, a story which was […]
Read more "Gojira vs. Biorante [Godzilla vs. Biollante] (1989)"
There is a certain impression we all have of the Gamera films (well, at least those of us who grew up watching endless Kaiju films on Saturday afternoon television). And that impression is not exactly a good one: low quality giant rubbery monster fare aimed squarely at children. It is also an impression that is […]
Read more "Gamera daikaijû kuchu kessen [Gamera: Guardian of the Universe] (1995)"
I suppose you could say it is a tradition. Although it isn’t too hard to spot the moment when it actually began. When Toho’s first major monster epic, Godzilla, first came to the United State, the U.S. producer added a lot of new footage with Raymond Burr as a reporter (with the funniest moment coming in […]
Read more "Daikaijû Gamera (Gamera: The Giant Monster) (1965)"
(aka, XIX) I should know by now that you just can’t rely on the advertising. Consider the movie 19: if you read the plot summaries of the film that are out there (and yes, the plot descriptions you find on a movie site are almost always written by the studio, particularly when every review uses […]
Read more "Nainteîn  (1987)"