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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Godzilla vs. The Sea Monster aka "Gojira, Ebirâ, Mosura: Nankai no daiketto" or "Ebirah, Horror Of The Deep" [Blu-ray]


(Jun Fukuda, 1966)





Review by Gary Tooze



Theatrical: Toho Company

Video: eOne / Section 23



Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:26:56.211

Disc Size: 19,953,635,616 bytes

Feature Size: 19,514,701,824 bytess

Video Bitrate: 24.00 Mbps

Chapters: 11

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: May 6th, 2014



Aspect ratio: 2.35:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video



DTS-HD Master Audio English 2043 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2043 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio Japanese 2090 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2090 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)



English, none



Japanese Trailer (2:16)





Description: When Ryota's brother Yata disappears at sea, the intrepid youth and his friends join forces with a slightly trustworthy bank robber, steal a boat and go after him! Of course, there's the little problem that Yata may be lost on a mysterious island where the evil terrorist organization Red Bamboo has enslaved natives to make heavy water for nefarious purposes. And that means dealing with the island's monstrous, 164 feet tall guardian EbirahT, as well as Red Bamboo's arsenal of super advanced weaponry. On the plus side, help may be at hand in the form of a nubile island girl, two tiny fairies, their giant protector MothraT and the big G himself, the mighty Godzilla. Surviving the results of all that "assistance" may not be guaranteed, but Red Bamboo will never want to tangle with teenagers AND Godzilla at the same time again! Take a South Seas cruise to non-stop mayhem and giant monster destruction with EBIRAH- HORROR OF THE DEEP!



The Film:

The sea monster in the title of Godzilla vs the Sea Monster brings new meaning to the words "jumbo shrimp." Ebirah, whose name is derived from the Japanese word for shrimp, is just that -- a monstrous, towering, man-eating shrimp. As you might imagine, he (she?) isn't a very compelling monster, especially when pitted against the Big G, whose nuclear breath and preference for underwater environments make him more than a match for the Bubba-Gump Company's fantasy spokesman. Believe us, the "throw another shrimp on the barbie" joke did not go unused during our screening of this film.

Godzilla vs the Sea Monster was the first Godzilla film directed by Jun Fukuda, a man who would direct five Godzilla films in all. Fukuda was responsible (some would say to blame, as Roger Corman put it) for a new direction in the series -- less epic, more adventure-driven films emerged. In Sea Monster, this is especially true: there is no city-smashing, nor are there dire threats to the planet. Instead, Godzilla hangs out on a small island in the South Pacific (natch) while a more human-scaled drama plays out.

Excerpt fromSTOMPTokyolocated HERE

Ebirah, Horror of the Deep exemplifies the peak of the Godzilla franchise’s tonal shift into campy, fun territory, a phenomenon that reflected the series’ absorption of 1960s Western pop-culture influences. To understand the origins of Ebirah’s light-hearted tone, the film’s production context is key: the script originally called for King Kong but was later changed to Toho’s trademark kaiju. Series creator Tomoyuki Tanaka replaced director Ishiro Honda with Jun Fukuda, and Masaru Sato took over composing duties from Akira Ifukube. It’s uncertain if Tanaka asked Honda to sit out for Ebirah to prevent the director from settling into a creative rut or if Honda himself chose not to participate because of the series’ recent light-hearted turn, but Fukuda – selected for his experience directing sci-fi, though it was never his preferred genre – took the job with reluctance.

Excerpt from NotComingToATheatre located HERE

Image :    NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster looks rich and sweet Blu-ray.  It's single-layered with a supportive bitrate, vibrant colors, extensive depth and an extremely pleasing image. Gorgeous! It makes me desire Ebirah in a large bisque appetizer with his broiled tail in some melted butter. This Blu-ray has pleasingly sharp visuals in the 2.35:1 aspect ratio.  It  came out a few years ago but by modern standards this looks far better than I was anticipating. Go Blu-ray Go!

























Audio :

The audio is rendered in dual DTS-HD Master tracks in both English or Japanese. Effects abound but you have to love the Masaru Satô (Throne of Blood, The Lower Depths, Hidden Fortress, I Live in Fear etc.) score which sounds excellent. There are optional English subtitles and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked Blu-ray.



Extras :

The only supplement is a Japanese trailer.



What? Are you kidding me? Look at the kitsch value here! Mid 60's Godzilla?, dancing Japanese teens? An evil, eye-patch wearing, baddie, and, eventually-revealing, friendly monsters? Masaru Satô score? SOLD! I loved every second of this. Ebirah is a supersilly foe - what is it? a lobster? or a Shrimp? The Blu-ray is so desirable at around $10. Your digital collection is inferior without this gem. 

Gary Tooze

October 25th, 2017





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