|Godzilla's Revenge (Simitar Entertainment)|
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|Japanese Title: Gojira, Minira, Gabara: Oru Kaiju Daishingeki (ďGodzilla, Minya, Gabara: All Monsters AttackĒ)
Alternate Titles: All Monsters Attack (international title)
Director: Ishiro Honda (Godzilla, King Of The Monsters; Rodan)
Original Release Year: 1969
Running Time: 69 minutes
DVD Released By: Simitar Entertainment
Video: Widescreen and fullscreen
Audio: English mono, English 5.1
Extras: Simitar Godzilla trailers, art gallery, trivia game
DVD-ROM content: 4 screen savers, printable photo & art galleries, access to simitar.com and followthru.com websites
Closed Captions: None
UPC #: 082551747528
Catalog #: 7475
Status: Simitar went out of business, and this disk is out of print. It was also available as part of the Godzilla: 5 Rampaging Movies Box Set, and the Godzilla Collection Box Set.
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|Reviewed by: Zillamon51|
|The Film: Ichiro is a young boy living in Tokyo. Both his mother and father have to work long hours to make ends meet, and they are rarely home. Ichiroís situation at school is no better. He is frequently targeted by a gang of bullies led by his nemesis, Gabara. To escape his dreary circumstances, Ichiro dreams of visiting far-off Monster Island. There, he can spend time with Minya, and watch Godzilla engage in exciting combat with the other monsters.
Things arenít all pleasant on Monster Island, though. Minya, the smallest monster on the island, is bullied by an aggressive monster called (you guessed it), Gabara. Ichiro watches on as Godzilla instructs Minya in standing up for himself and fighting his own battles. Back in the real world, Ichiro will also need to draw on Godzillaís example; not only to stand up to the bullies, but also to save himself from a pair of bumbling bank robbers who take him hostage.
Godzillaís Revenge suffers, somewhat unjustly, from a poor reputation among Godzilla fans. It was the first Godzilla movie made exclusively for children. It was also a very low-budget project. The filmís biggest weakness is that much of the monster action is made up of stock footage from earlier movies. Godzillaís battles with Ebirah, a giant condor, and a squadron of fighter jets are from Godzilla vs. The Sea Monster, and his fight with Spiega is from Son Of Godzilla. The U.S. version also suffers from some horrendous dubbing.
The film does have its strong points. Itís easy to feel for Ichiro, who spends most of his lonely days either playing in dilapidated buildings or daydreaming in a cramped apartment. The filmís message about latchkey kids having to grow up before their time is even more relevant today than when the film was made in 1969. In many ways, Godzillaís Revenge is superior to the similar Home Alone. All in all, if one is willing to accept Godzillaís Revenge as a kidís movie, and nothing more, it succeeds in that capacity quite well. Grade: B-
Video: This disk includes both widescreen and fullscreen versions, on opposite sides of the disk. The widescreen version preserves the filmís original theatrical aspect ratio, and thus is the preferred viewing option. Like all of Simitarís Godzilla disks, this DVD was digitally remastered from the original film print. Considering its age, the print is in very good shape. There are very few speckles and blemishes. The transfer is clear and sharp. The blockiness and pixelization that is present on several of Simitarís Godzilla disks is at a minimum here. The first time you see this film in widescreen is bound to be a revelation. (Seeing the stock scenes from Godzilla vs. The Sea Monster and Son Of Godzilla just whets my appetite for quality widescreen versions of those films on DVD!) The only thing missing here is anamorphic enhancement.
The fullscreen version is the same one thatís been on TV and video in the U.S. for years. The colors are dull, the fullscreen composition is cramped, and there is more print damage on this TV / video print than on the widescreen theatrical print. Donít waste your time; stick with the widescreen version. Grade: B+
Audio: The English mono track is serviceable, if nothing special. The slurred dialogue and goofy voices of the English dub are reproduced faithfully. Itís recorded slightly lower than the Classic Media version, but otherwise sounds identical. This disk also features a 5.1 remix. Since I donít yet have a 5.1 system, I canít comment on that option. Grade: C+
Extras / Menus: The usual Simitar extras are all here (except for film facts). There are trailers for Godzilla, King Of The Monsters; Godzilla vs. Mothra, Godzilla vs. Monster Zero, Godzillaís Revenge, and Terror Of MechaGodzilla. Unfortunately, these are not the original theatrical trailers, but rather video promos for the Simitar releases. There is also an art gallery featuring still images of Simitar cover art and images from the Godzilla film series, and a trivia game. All of these extras are on side B, with the widescreen version of the movie.
DVD-ROM content includes: 4 screen savers, printable photo & art galleries, and access to simitar.com and followthru.com websites. I canít get any of the screen savers to work. The computer keeps telling me that such-and-such file is ďNot a valid Windows image.Ē The DVD insert lists the system requirements as ďWindows 95 only;Ē perhaps this is why? The photo and art galleries work, and contain all the same images that can be viewed on any DVD player. All the images are printable. Simitarís website is long gone; followthru.com contains links to many other sites (not all of which are Godzilla-related).
The main menu and scene selection menu include animated film clips in the option windows. Grade: B
Final Analysis: Once youíve seen this film digitally remastered in widescreen, youíll never want to waste your time watching a fullscreen version again. This disk is a terrific improvement over any previous release. This much-maligned film was finally given a worthy release in the U.S.; itís a shame itís out of print and hasnít been re-issued. Final Grade: B
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