Archive for Noriaki Yuasa

Turtle Eclipse

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , on May 10, 2021 by dcairns

GAMERON VS GUIRON (1969) is dumb but good-looking. Like a kaiju Matt Dillon, if you will.

The Gamera series, about the misadventures of a giant jet-propelled turtle, is to me more fun than the Godzilla films, because Gamera is (a) aimed at children more clearly than the big lizard’s romps — children tend to play prominent roles in the stories, and Gamera is “the protector of children” and (b) they are also insanely violent — the monsters bleed various brightly-hued ichors, and get their limbs pierced, lopped off, etc. Because kids love that shit.

Argh! Gamera gets throwing stars stuck in his face! Urgh, Gyaos, the vanquished enemy from a previous film in the series, accidentally lasers his own leg off! Urk! Guiron, whose head is a cleaver, hacks off the disabled monster’s head!

I haven’t looked up what Gyaos’ star vehicle is called, but I’m going to take a wild guess and suggest it might be GAMERA VS GYAOS.

Weird, fun, ineffective stuff in this film:

It intercuts the big battles on another world, witnessed by our boy heroes, with the family members left behind on earth. Mom refuses to believe her son and his friend have taken off in a flying saucer. So nothing happens in these scenes, but it happens quite slowly.

There’s a flashback to Gamera’s previous escapades. An insanely long clipshow of previous kills.

Have to give director Noriaki Yuasa credit for this lovely image

There are two lady aliens, last survivors of a dying race. They want to eat the boy-heroes’ brains, and to this end they shave one kid’s head. As the author of a children’s TV episode about a brain-eating alien (the late, much missed Ricky Callan) I couldn’t not be down with this.

The process photography budget was apparently nil, so the kids sometimes stand beside giant photographic blow-ups of the model shot they’re supposed to be inhabiting.

One of the kids is a gaijin, so there’s a kaijin and a gaijin

Watching Gamera movies is definitely a waste of time but I’m probably going to watch them all now. Because if I tried to structure my viewing based on the principle of the finite lifespan, I’d probably be too depressed or anxious to watch anything.