on 23 April 2008
I recently added this to my DVD collection.
Basically, it's Godzilla, Rodan, and Mothra teaming up to battle Ghidorah, who has somewhat of an advantage with the ability to fire giant lightning bolts from not one but three heads (thus the name). Fortunately, the redundant/simultaneously speaking little twin girls are able to convince Mothra to arrange a truce between Godzilla and Rodan, long enough for them to join forces with Mothra to battle Ghidorah, who is well, just mean. Mothra at a disadvantage here, working from the larvae state and needing to crawl around instead of fly but he/she was still able to shoot the silk with some accuracy.
One thing I should mention, Godzilla and Rodan, who were involved in an altercation prior to the Mothra brokered peace agreement, looked suspiciously like hand puppets in several of the scenes, instead of like the real monsters.
Image quality of DVD was good, with some 'specs' still visible, color very good. Nice having the Japanese version on here, there is enough 'silliness' without the english dubbing. Very entertaining.
King Ghidorah is one of the most charismatic and endurant Godzilla foes, but the first movie in which it appeared aged very, very badly. The scenario is very weak and special effects poor. Ghidorah itself still is impressive, Mothra (in its larval form) is OK, but Rodan and Godzilla were showed here as rather pathetic.
I think the movie is mostly boring for the modern viewer and I had to fast forward parts of it. I would give it two stars, but there are some things that can be enjoyed - it is the first one in which the kaijus (giant monsters) are shown in a deliberately comic way. Mothra, Godzilla and Rodan have a conversation (yes!), Godzilla's fight with Rodan looks like a bickering of two kids about a ball (in this case a big rock) and we can even see Godzilla and Rodan laughing (yes!).
The twin fairies from Infant Island are also as usual very cute, as is the Venusian/Himalayan princess. Finally, you can see some Japan from the early 60s in this movie, and it comes a little as a shock to realise how fast and far this country has risen since then!
All in all - this is a movie you do not really need to buy or even watch, except if you are the ultimate fan, a devoted collectioner or a scientist making a study about oversized fire breathing dark green reptiles with bad temper, poor social skills and an irresistible pulsion to trample Tokyo...
on 31 March 2015
Ghidorah The Three-Headed Monster is one of the Godzilla films that I have never seen, and because most Godzilla films are only available on Region 1, I had to invest in a multi region dvd player in order to start collecting them. Having said that, its safe to say I wasn,t missing much all these years, due to the fact this is hardly one of the best in the series.
The movie is way too slow and boring, and takes far too long getting to the monster on monster action, and then, when it does, its nothing special. The fight between Godzilla and Rodan for instance, basically consists of Rodan pecking Godzilla on the head several times while Godzilla shoots his atomic breath at Rodan a few times, which doesn,t seem to be doing any damage whatsoever.
When Mothra finally shows up, and tries to convince both monsters to team up against Ghodorah, she gets them to listen by spraying them with some kind of webbing, which is the lamest power ever. The climatic battle is slightly better, but not by much. Godzilla throws rocks, Rodan flies around flapping his wings, and Mothra spits that annoying webbing. This is apparently too much for Ghidorah, as he soon decides that discretion is better than valour and flies away to god knows where.
Like most Godzilla movies, there is of course a secondary plot involving a princess who suddenly starts believing she is from Mars, complete with prophetic powers, but we never do find out who gives them to her. Assassins are trying to kill her, while the police and a reporter try to protect her. unfortunately, far too much time is spent on this rather than the monsters, which is the main reason anyone watches these.
The production values are also the worst I have seen for a Godzilla movie, with Godzilla and Rodan both looking like puppets at times. King Kong vs Godzilla, which I saw prior to this, was way better, which makes no sense at all. Production values are supposed to get better over time, not worse. I suppose that's what happens when your churning the movies out year after year, the money just runs out. Buy it if you want to complete your collection, or just a Godzilla fan in general, but don,t expect to be blown away.
on 20 May 2012
This is considered one of the classics in the Godzilla series, mainly for the reason that it's the first appearance of King Ghidorah.
Film: The acting is typical of a typical Showa Godzilla film; slightly wooden, but passable. The special effects are rather good, especially on Ghidorah. However, the fight between Godzilla and Rodan looks extremely tame and streched out (ie. playing volley ball with a boulder, Rodan flying into Godzilla's face and knocking him over, with Godzilla getting up and jumping about like a panzy, and scenes where Rodan pecks at Godzilla's face and the camera jerks about, causing motion sickness), and they replaced Godzilla's blue atomic breath with steam.
The plot is basic, but serves its purpose. The music is epic, as pretty much all Akira Ifukube scores are. The ending fight with Ghidorah ciukld have been a bit more epic, but it was probably restrained due to budgeting reasons. The side plot of hitmen trying to kill the proncess whom the Venusan/ Martian is inhabiting adds something for the humans to do rather than run around panicking or send in futile attempts at defence via tanks and Mazers.
DVD: Slightly muffled sound(probably my hearing). Good quality presentation considering how old it is. The special features aren't much, just a documentary on Eji Tsuberaia (mis- spelt), which is short but informative, and a trailer.
Overall: Rather good, but for nostalgic reasons. If you're a G- Fan, this is a must- buy!
on 6 October 2012
Probably not one for the kiddies but any Godzilla fan or potential should purchase one. Very entertaining, exciting, interesting and generally a good film to watch.
I'd also like to add that for the time considering this was the 60s this is a very high quality film, the only thing that bothered me was when Rodan is awakened, Godzilla's voice is used in the first go which is probably a mistake but it puts a damper on an otherwise immaculate film. The acting was all very good as were the effects, they still didn't have the monsters perfect but it was much better than Godzilla Raids again by far.
Ghidorah is made out to be an absolute abomination destroying Japan and reducing it to ruins, Mothra appears in her larva form and tried to convince Rodan and Godzilla to stop fighting and help her fight Ghidorah (being in larval form she has very little strength or power compared with adult form) they refuse and just want to continue fighting each other and Mothra bravely goes to fight Ghidorah. In the end the three of them bring Ghidorah down. There's lots of action with humans too with the twin fairies, a Tv reporter and a princess whom believes she is a Martian.
Definitely one for the collection I guarantee you will love it like I do!
on 22 May 2012
Ghidorah The Three Headed Monster is one of the all time greats from the Godzilla Film series. Directed by the Amazing Ishiro Honda and guest starring Takashi Shimura who appeared in the original 1954 Godzilla and Akira Kurosawa's Masterpiece, Seven Samurai. Thanks to the way it is told you don't need to be a die hard fan of Godzilla to enjoy this because the film takes it's time telling you what you need to know before it speeds up. For non-Godzilla fans it is still an enjoyable film and a Must See and Must Get for Godzilla fans (full review coming soon on my blog - [...]) - I do advise though that you watch the Japanese Version that is provided in this product because it is a whole lot better than the American Version.
on 31 January 2013
This DVD is really worth the money. It's very rare that one gets both, the US cut and the Japanese Original version on one DVD. I would have preferred the digipack packaging that other movies from the Toho-Master-Collection have but, apart from that, great DVD.
Grabbing a rare day off from the protracted shoot of Kurosawa's Redbeard, star of the original Godzilla film Takashi Shimura returned to the series for the last time, this time as a psychologist, in San Daikaijû: Chikyû Saidai No Kessen/Earth's Greatest Battle aka Ghidorah, The Three-Headed Monster - or Ghidrah if you watch the US version. Marking Godzilla's first time crossing the line from villain to hero (albeit very reluctantly) which many hardcore fans regard as the beginning of the end for the big feller, while it's certainly enjoyable, like most Toho monster mashes this spends much more time with the humans than it does with the critters. This time the plot revolves around a plot to kill a princess of an obscure kingdom during her visit to Japan which goes awry, as these conspiracies so often do, when she steps out of her plane into a gap between dimensions and emerges as a Venusian prophetess of the end of the world at the claws of Ghidorah, a rather impressive cross between a flying dragon and an economy-price Hydra (half the heads, all the destructive power) with previous for laying wastes to whole worlds.
Godzilla and flying monster Rodan are also back on the rampage, and it's up to the two singing fairy girls from Infant Island and Mothra to persuade them to save the Earth in a dementedly enjoyable monster summit where they translate the surly critters' grievances with the pesky human race that is always picking on them. Unfortunately Rodan is one of the least impressive of Toho's monster roster, and here the model work is particularly bad, turning him into across between The Giant Claw and Sam the Eagle from The Muppet Show, while Mothra is still in its larva stage purely because its cheaper to do special effects with a giant slug than a giant flying moth (its twin from Mothra Vs. Godzilla having conveniently died between movies presumably for the same reason). When the monsters do finally slug it out in the last half hour, it's something of a disappointment. The big feller's battle with Rodan consists largely of the prehistoric bird pecking him on the head while he kicks rocks at it, although a sequence where the two throw and head the same rock between each other, Mothra watching like a spectator at Wimbledon, is amusing. Similarly, the final battle with Ghidorah never lives up to its potential, with the beasts considerately having their showdown in the countryside to keep the city stomping to an affordable minimum.
This also ups the comedy: with body language straight out of Oliver Hardy and getting zapped in the butt and the groin, you half expect Godzilla to get a custard pie in the face at times. The special effects are a step down from previous entries, with a lot of unconvincing puppet work, while plot inconsistencies abound - the two singing fairy girls say they don't want to attract attention, yet appear on a Where Are they Now? TV show - but do you really see a Godzilla film for the plot? Unlike previous entries in the series, the US version included alongside the original Japanese version on Classic Media's Region 1 DVD is more a case of trimming and tidying the chronology than a radical overhaul, though it does change the princess from a Venusian to a Martian and adds shots of Rodan to Godzilla's early rampages to make them seem less unmotivated.
The Japanese version includes featurette The Father of Godzilla - Eiji Tsuburaya and the Japanese trailer while the US version (on the same disc but a separate menu) includes an audio commentary by David Kalat and stills and poster gallery. Both versions have decent 2.35:1 widescreen transfers.
The US version includes
on 12 November 2014
Exactly what is described although will only play on pc as it is for US (you get 5 x) to view, my oversight.
on 15 September 2014
My kids loved it