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An airplane, carrying an atomic bomb, is shot down over the arctic. The
bomb, of course, goes off, & with the typical logic of a Japanese
monster movie, it immediately causes a monster to hatch, this time it's
... a giant, sabre tooth turtle, Gamera. Almost immediately the turtle,
which can walk on its hind legs, breath fire & even fly (!), commences
on its way to Japan with only one thing in mind - destruction.
Japan's scientists - most prominently Dr Hidaka (Eiji Funakoshi), who saw
the turtle hatch & professor Murase (Jun Hamamura) - & the
military are still trying to find a way to get rid of the monster, it also
finds a supporter in young Toshio (Yoshiro Uchida), a little boy obsessed
with turtles, whom Gamera at one point in the movie saves (!) when it
destroys his home.
Soon our scientists come up with a plan that is as
elaborate as stupid - to lure the turtle into a pit & force it to fall
onto its back, because they think it won't be able to get back up again.
Wrong, once on its back, Gamera retracts its head & legs, starts to
spin around really fast & flies off to wreak more havoc.
plan, plan Z: Since Gamera is feeding on energy & fire, why not use
fire to lure it into some sort of egg-like container & shoot the
container to Mars ?
It' s so stupid it has to work ! & it does,
The world is safe again, & little Toshio promises that, once
he's grown up too, he'll fly to Mars as well.
inspired by the success of the Godzilla-series,
Gamera (both this movie & the series as a whole) was never
quite on par with Godzilla,
both story- & effect-wise (even if both story & effects were often
quite shoddy in the Godzilla-films
as well). & maybe the concept of a sabre tooth turtle walking on its
hind legs, breathing fire & occasionally flying is a bit much to
swallow, while the kids who appear in almost every episode of the series
are definitely too much.
That all said, in a trashy, childish way, this
film here still is fun to watch (after all, it is about a sabre
tooth turtle walking on its hind legs).
For the American version,
several scenes with American actors discussing what happens in the film
are tagged on. Some of these scenes are even hilarious.