Saturday, December 12, 2009

Bat Out Of Hell: Gamera Vs Gyaos(1967)

I'm a huge fan of the classic Gamera films which were made by the Daiei Motion Picture Company back in the 60's. My favorite among these older Gamera movies is called Gamera Vs Gyaos, first released to theaters in Japan back in March of 1967. This movie, directed by Noriaki Yuasa and produced by Hidemasa Nagata, pits Gamera, a 200 foot tall fire breathing and flying turtle, against a giant and malevolent, people eating and winged monster called "Gyaos". Gyaos resembles an enormous bat that can emit a powerful sonic beam capable of cutting buildings in half. The winged monster antagonist has blood red eyes and a creepy roar: there is in fact a decided "horror" undercurrent to this movie due in large part to the film's score.

The Daiei Region 2 DVD of Gamera Vs Gyaos(1967), which presents the film in it's original (widescreen) 2:35.1 aspect ratio, has become hard to find on the internet. The film was released by AIP in the U.S. under the title "Return Of The Giant Monsters" and has been released twice on DVD under its Americanized title:

-by Image Entertainment in June, 2004 as a full screen(1:33.1 aspect ratio), Region 1(NTSC) release and paired with Toei's 1966 fantasy-kaiju epic The Magic Serpent

-by St. Clair Entertainment in March, 2005 in full screen, all region(NTSC) as part of a nine(9) film DVD set.

To see the Image Entertainment R1 DVD release of Gamera Vs Gyaos(1967)/The Magic Serpent(1966) and the 2005 St. Clair Entertainment Group nine movie DVD set release click on the above DVD cover art images.

The original Daiei trailer for Gamera Vs Gyaos(1967):