Friday, July 26, 2019

Spine #1000 of the Criterion Collection is Radioactive! GODZILLA: THE SHOWA FILMS Coming to Blu-ray in Late October!


CRITERION PULLS OFF A MIRACLE AND RELEASES THE FIRST FIFTEEN GODZILLA FILMS IN ONE BEAUTIFUL BLU-RAY COLLECTION!

2019 has truly been the "Year of Godzilla" Vault Dwellers: GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS stomped its way into theaters (and into my heart), I attended GODZILLA-PALOOZA at The Mahoning Drive-In last month and saw six Godzilla classics in 35mm, and I attended my first ever G-FEST in Chicago mere weeks ago and met the amazing Akira Takarada!

After all of that, Criterion's (not so) surprising announcement of GODZILLA: THE SHOWA-ERA FILMS is the big red cherry on top! Though I'm hoping that they sneak in some more special features between now and the end of October, I readily admit that there is already a LOT to love about this collection! My only (minor) complaints are a lack of English dubbing for the majority of the films (only six of the movies in the set will have an English dub-track), and the absence of alternate versions of several of the movies (e.g. GIGANTIS, THE FIRE MONSTER, the alternate U.S. version of GODZILLA RAIDS AGAIN).

That being said, this is a day one purchase for yours truly, and I cannot wait to have a Godzilla marathon once Halloween is over with this year! Let's take a closer look at this amazing Blu-ray collection fellow Godzilla fans!

Synopsis: In 1954, an enormous beast clawed its way out of the sea, destroying everything in its path — and changing movies forever. The arresting original Godzilla soon gave rise to an entire monster-movie genre (kaiju eiga), but the King of the Monsters continued to reign supreme: in fourteen fiercely entertaining sequels over the next two decades, Godzilla defended its throne against a host of other formidable creatures, transforming from a terrifying symbol of nuclear annihilation into a benevolent (if still belligerent) Earth protector. Collected here for the first time are all fifteen Godzilla films of Japan’s Showa era, in a landmark set showcasing the technical wizardry, fantastical storytelling, and indomitable international appeal that established the most iconic giant monster the cinema has ever seen.

Disc Specs:
GOJIRA (and GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS)
Not Rated | Black & White | 96 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p "Fullscreen" (1.37:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

GODZILLA RAIDS AGAIN
Not Rated | Black & White | 81 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p "Fullscreen" (1.37:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

KING KONG VS. GODZILLA (Includes both U.S. & Japanese cuts)
Not Rated | Color | 91 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

MOTHRA VS. GODZILLA
Not Rated | Color | 89 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

GHIDORAH: THE THREE-HEADED MONSTER
Not Rated | Color | 93 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

INVASION OF THE ASTRO-MONSTER (aka GODZILLA VS. MONSTER ZERO)
Not Rated | Color | 94 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

EBIRAH, HORROR OF THE DEEP (aka GODZILLA VS. THE SEA MONSTER)
Not Rated | Color | 86 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

SON OF GODZILLA
Not Rated | Color | 85 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

DESTROY ALL MONSTERS
Not Rated | Color | 89 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

ALL MONSTERS ATTACK (aka GODZILLA'S REVENGE)
Not Rated | Color | 69 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

GODZILLA VS. HEDORAH (aka GODZILLA VS. THE SMOG MONSTER)
Not Rated | Color | 85 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

GODZILLA VS. GIGAN
Not Rated | Color | 89 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural
 
GODZILLA VS. MEGALON
Not Rated | Color | 81 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

GODZILLA VS. MECHAGODZILLA
Not Rated | Color | 84 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

TERROR OF MECHAGODZILLA
Not Rated | Color | 83 minutes | Region A
Video - 1080p Widescreen (2.35:1)
Audio - Japanese Monaural

Extras:
  • High-definition digital transfers of all fifteen Godzilla films made between 1954 and 1975, released together for the first time, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks!
  • High-definition digital transfers of GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS, the 1956 U.S.-release version of GOJIRA; and the 1962 Japanese-release version of KING KONG VS. GODZILLA!
  • Audio commentaries from 2011 on GOJIRA and GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS  featuring film historian David Kalat!
  • International English-language dub tracks for INVASION OF ASTRO-MONSTER, SON OF GODZILLA, DESTROY ALL MONSTERS, GODZILLA VS. MEGALON, GODZILLA VS. MECHAGODZILLA, and TERROR OF MECHAGODZILLA!
  • Directors Guild of Japan interview with director Ishiro Honda, conducted by director Yoshimitsu Banno in 1990!
  • Programs detailing the creation of Godzilla’s special effects and unused effects sequences from Toho releases including DESTROY ALL MONSTERS!
  • NEW! Interview with filmmaker Alex Cox about his admiration for the Showa-era Godzilla films!
  • New and archival interviews with cast and crew members, including actors Bin Furuya, Tsugutoshi Komada, Haruo Nakajima, and Akira Takarada; composer Akira Ifukube; and effects technicians Yoshio Irie and Eizo Kaimai!
  • Interview with critic Tadao Sato from 2011!
  • Illustrated audio essay from 2011 about the real-life tragedy that inspired Godzilla!
  • New English subtitle translations!
  • Trailers
  • PLUS: A lavishly illustrated deluxe hardcover book featuring an essay by cinema historian Steve Ryfle, notes on the films by cinema historian Ed Godziszewski, and new illustrations by Arthur Adams, Sophie Campbell, Becky Cloonan, Jorge Coelho, Geof Darrow, Simon Gane, Robert Goodin, Benjamin Marra, Monarobot, Takashi Okazaki, Angela Rizza, Yuko Shimizu, Bill Sienkiewicz, Katsuya Terada, Ronald Wimberly, and Chris Wisnia!
Criterion's GODZILLA: THE SHOWA-ERA FILMS is a G-Fan's dream come true, and will be released on October 29th, 2019. The set will cost between $150 - $225, though I do believe that the cost may drop even further as the street date nears. You can currently pre-order this bad boy from AMAZON, BULL MOOSE, DIABOLIK DVD, or directly from CRITERION.


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