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GAMERA VS. GYAOS / GAMERA VS. VIRAS...
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Reviewed by: Andre Manseau

Directed by: Noriaki Yuasa

Starring:
Kojiro Hongo

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
VS Gyaos: Gamera the giant turtle thing is chilling out at Mount Fuji. A laser beam cuts through a press helicopter and an evil reporter tries to use a little boy to help him find the laser. Unfortunately for them, they stumble upon Gyaos inside a green cave. Who can help? Gamera, of course!

VS Viras: A couple of boy scouts are hanging out with Gamera and somehow get a hold of a mini submarine (?). They soon get kidnapped by aliens and then Gamera has to take them down and a giant squid monster thing.
Is it good movie?
Well, I'm kind of at a loss for words here. I've never really been a huge fan of those old monster movies. They don't age well and all follow a generally similar path. I guess these flicks were an attempt to market Gamera to kids because the film seems almost completely absurd and full of weird humor. There's a ton of bad effects, terrible acting and lots of things that glow.

The acting is slightly better in the second film (Viras), and it would appear that this entry is trying to appeal a bit more to western audiences but is still definitely marketed towards children. The submarine stuff and the alien spaceship is stuff that seems to be right out of a small child's wildest dreams and the creation of Viras is just surreal. I'd have to say that although I enjoyed the absurdity of this film, it seemed to recycle footage of big fights from previous movies to pad the runtime.

Neither of these movies are to be taken seriously, and really seem to exist for one audience and that's about it. Gamera is the 'kid-friendly' monster and doesn't feature any truly graphic violence that wouldn't be accompanied by laughter immediately afterward. These are both really guilty pleasure films more than anything, and I'm sure that fans of the series would love revisiting them.
Video / Audio
Both films are presented in 16:9 enhanced anamorphic widescreen transfers and look great, considering the films are almost 40 years old.

Audio is presented in their original (mono) Japanese with English subtitles and also feature tracks with English dubbing. Avoid the english dubbing, because it's really, really awful.
The Extras
Both films feature stills from a publicity gallery.
Last Call
If you love these movies, you likely own this disc already. If you don't and you have an interest in Power Rangers-esque rubber monster movies with a childlike flair for the absurd, then you'll dig this.
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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