KING KONG VS. GODZILLA
Directed by Inoshiro Honda & Thomas Montgomery
Written by Paul Mason & Bruce Howard (English version)
Produced by Toho Co. Ltd
Special fx by Eiji Tsuburaya
Cast: Tadao Takashima, Kenji Sahara, Yu Fujiki, Ichirô Arishima, Jun Tazaki, Akihiko Hirata, Michael Keith & Harry Holcombe
1962/91 mins/Color/2.0 Mono Dolby Digital
2.35:1 anamorphic/English/Japan/NTSC Region 1
Review from the Universal DVD
A rich chairman of a pharmaceutical company sends two of his best man to find strange berries on a remote island. Soon enough they meet the locals tribe who dance and pray for a mysterious giant creature. Well that monster happens to be none other then King Kong.
Like any normal human beings, they decide to capture the giant ape and take him to Japan. What they don't know is that American soldiers have unintentionally unleashed Godzilla from the glacier he was stucked in. Soon enough both legendary monsters will face each other over Mt.Fuji in a battle of gigantic proportion.
I was finally able to see this one again after so many times. Unfortunately, as an adult the movie isn't as good as I remembered it from my childhood. Too much useless moments with the humans? Check! King Kong flying in the sky attached by ballons? Check! King Kong drinking the juice that is made from the berries and falling asleep? Check! King Kong looking butt ugly in one of the worst man in suit ever? Check! Still with all these rather "strange" elements, the movie is still a lotta fun. Godzilla steals the show and dominates most of the movie. This is much more of a kid fantasy oriented flick then the previous movies in the serie. Still to this day, the fight at the end is one of the most impressive ever in all of the Kaiju movies.
When Universal bought the rights to this movie they onced again felt like they needed to chance some of it for the American audience. Newscast were added in to explain what was happening onscreen. And unlike some long time rumours, both the Japanese and American versions of this classic had the same ending... an ambiguous draw. We see Kong swimming back to his island, while no signs of Godzilla... who must have been swimming down in the ocean getting ready for his next role in GODZILLA VS. THE THING.
In the early years of the DVD format, Goodtimes released a now OOP edition of KING KONG VS. GODZILLA. Now thanks to Peter Jackson's KING KONG remake, Universal have unleashed this classic on DVD in a two pack edition with 1968's KING KONG ESCAPES. The film is presented in its original 2.35:1 aspect ratio and it is anamorphic. For a 1962 movie, it looks surprisingly good. There's some grains, scratched and dust but it is a very enjoyeable transer. The 2.0 Mono Dolby Digital is also a good surprise here. It is clear and without any hiss or noise that plagues even some of the new releases out there. English, Spanish and French subtitles are available.
There is unfortunately no extras which is a shame really. The disc features static, simple but nice menus, 18 chapters and comes without a booklet or inlay card. Its important to note that the Japanese version of the movie was 7 minutes longer then the American version while the German was was a short affair at 82 minutes.
(original title Kingu Kongu tai Gojira)
No points allowed.
This Film Features:
Review by Kim Dubuisson. All Right Reserved. 2006. ©