Well, the DVD is quite good. The quality of the film is great; even the stock footage looks crisp and clear. The sound is good and the subtitles are pretty well done, aside from the rather amusing introduction of "Gorozaurus."
The movie itself is...um...
Well, it's still better than Godzilla vs. Megalon, but then so is being bitten by an angry mongoose.
At least it can't be said that the film tricks you into thinking it will be good, because the credits sequence is accompanied by a pop song. An awful pop song. I don't mean a goofy, so bad it's good J-Pop song.
I mean a shrieking, screeching voice singing--no, shouting mind-numbing lyrics like "Mi Mi Minilla! Poo Poo Poo!"I mean it will make your ears bleed bad.
I think this song could cause cancer in rats.
And for those who were wondering if the Japanese version makes it any clearer as to whether or not in this film's reality there really is a Godzilla, or if he's just a movie monster...no, it friggin' does not.
Although it does suggest that in Japan, adults worship God while children worship monsters. Apparently we weren't shown the scenes of Ichiro worshiping Cthulhu.
There are some amusing differences between this version and the English version. For one thing, Ichiro swears a lot more. Not Tarantino-type swearing, mind you, but still. I also enjoyed his internal monologues, the best being, "Bad man fall through the floor! Bad man fall through the floor! Bad man fall through the floor!"
The other thing is that whereas the English version gives Minilla a silly male voice that sounds like Bullwinkle, the Japanese version gives him a feminine voice that sounds more like Rocky. And, for some damn reason, the voice is muffled. This makes it seem as if the voice is coming from the person in the suit. Which is stupid.
On the plus side, this voice means we are denied such idiotic lines as, "Take that, weirdo!" However, it makes Ichiro's relationship with Minilla a lot creepier. Why? Because when I say a feminine voice, I don't mean Nancy Cartwright as Bart Simpson feminine. I mean, sexy Japanese woman feminine. The, uh, grunting noises she makes at certain points don't help any.
Between the new, sexy female Minilla and the kindly neighbor who is creepy as hell, I wonder that any parents in Japan ever showed this to their kids.
Then again, I really shouldn't be surprised.
And yes, this film still has an awful moral wherein Ichiro beats up the bully and then still does what the bully wanted him to do anyways, which results in an innocent stranger getting hurt. It'd be like an After school Special where the plucky teen hero just says no to drugs, gets the drug dealer arrested...and then ends the show by smokin' down a big fattie.
Though I'm still convinced that the makers of Home Alone saw this film. Hell, just substitute a giant monster film for that gangster film Kevin watches and Toho could sue for plagiarism.
I have to ask, though; why is it that everybody hates Gabara so much? He's a giant, electrified ogre that warbles--how can you not love that? He's pretty damned creepy, in his own way--I'm also pretty sure his design was inspired by the fire demon from Night of the Demon (aka Curse of the Demon). Not to mention clearly sadistic enough to pick on a baby monster, while also having the cajones to try and take on Godzilla.
Sure, he gets the crap kicked out of him, forced to limp away in humiliation as Ichiro teasingly cries, "Gabara the Cripple! Gabara the Cripple!" But he shot for the moon, and he burned up on re-entry.
He could still kick Jet Jaguar's ass.