Blu-ray Review: “The Toho Godzilla Collection”


Review by James McDonald

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment will distribute four double-feature Blu-ray releases of classic Godzilla films. The upcoming releases will be part of The Toho Godzilla Collection.

With the release of the big-budget remake of “Godzilla” only a few weeks away, studios are scrambling to cash in on the monster craze. The re-release of the original 1954 “Godzilla” comes out this Friday, May 9th in select theaters, including the Angelika in Dallas. My review for that will be up later this week and Sony Pictures have just released four double-feature blu-rays which will be available in stores tomorrow, May 6th. The four sets include the following movies:

Godzilla Vs. King Ghidorah (1991)
Time travelers use Godzilla in their scheme to destroy Japan to prevent the country’s future economic reign.

Godzilla Vs. Mothra (1992)
In the midst of another rampage by Godzilla, Mothra emerges to save the human race from Battra.

Godzilla Vs. Mechagodzilla II (1993)
The United Nations assembles the ultimate weapon to defeat Godzilla, while scientists discover a fresh Pteranodon egg on a remote Japanese island.

Godzilla Vs. Spacegodzilla (1994)
Godzilla is threatened by two new forces: Mogera – another UN built machine & Space Godzilla – a beast spawned from Godzilla’s particles in space.

Godzilla Vs. Destoroyah (1995)
The aftermath of the Oxygen Destroyer brings forth Destoroyah, a beast intent on killing Godzilla, who is on the verge of a nuclear meltdown.

Godzilla Vs. Megaguirus (2000)
Godzilla returns to terrorize Japan! This time, however, Japan has two new weapons to defend themselves. The Gryphon, a high-tech ship and the Dimension Tide, a device that creates artificial black holes!

Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S (2003)
One year after the fight between Godzilla and Mechagodzilla, the two monsters along with Mothra face off in a conclusive battle royale.

Godzilla: Final Wars (2004)
Godzilla’s 50th Anniversary project, in which Gojira (Godzilla) travels around the world to fight his old foes plus a new, mysterious monster named Monster X.

I personally was never a fan of any of the Godzilla movies. The special effects were always cheesy and obviously they were meant to be. With the new upcoming American version, the special effects will be, undoubtedly, spectacular but word on the internet is that the Japanese are not happy with Godzilla’s new look. Naturally, they are very protective of their creation but what I noticed about the eight movies coming out on blu-ray, is that with each reappearance, starting in 1991 through 2004, Godzilla is still a man in a suit. Even though the special effects happening around him get better with each film, the monster himself pretty much stays the same.

And that’s a shame because although a part of me understands that they want him to pretty much look the same in each movie, that is the appeal of Godzilla after all, the other part of me wants them to upgrade his appearance. Granted, just because it looks better doesn’t necessarily mean that it is better, a lot of Hollywood remakes over the past ten years or so have proved that they were nowhere near as good as the original but every now and again, one comes along that can stand right next to the original. The blu-ray releases are aimed squarely at the Godzilla fans and each disc has the following specs:

Format: Blu-ray, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
Subtitles: French
Region: Region A/1
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Number of discs: 2
Rated: Unrated/PG/PG-13
Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
DVD Release Date: May 6, 2014
Run Time: 215 minutes/216 minutes





James McDonald
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