An experimental lab animal called a gargantua escapes from his captors and is suspected to be the creature that is killing people all over the countryside. But when the gargantua from the ... See full summary »
After a treacherous expedition to retrieve a giant opal, disaster strikes as the opal reveals itself to be an egg which spawns Barugon, demon dog from Hell! Armed with a deadly tongue and cold beams, Barugon wreaks havoc on Japan. Gamera comes to save the day. Written by
Jonah Falcon <email@example.com>
Shigeo Tanaka directed "Gamera vs. Barugon" in 1966, the second film to feature the giant fire-breathing turtle Gamera. I'll be the first to give "Gamera vs. Barugon" a fair review. This second entry into the original seven-film series is probably my favorite, simply because it doesn't feature any annoying Gamera friends; you know what I mean, kids. "Gamera vs. Barugon" is the only movie in the series to not feature annoying adolescents who can communicate with the monster. In this second feature, greedy fortune hunters head to New Guinea where they believe a priceless opal was hidden during the Second World War. Alas, they find it, but one of them is greedier than the other two and kills them both off (well, one of them is stung by a poisonous scorpion, and the other, the hero of the story, survives the attempted assassination). What the greedy man doesn't know, is that what he has in his possession is not a jewel at all, but a monster's egg, Barugon's egg. The infant monster, once exposed to infra-red heat rays, grows to its mature size and begins attacking Japan. Gamera interferes but is defeated quite easily by Barugon's freezing vapor. Meanwhile, the hero and a village girl travel back to Japan, using the ancient legends (combined with modern scientific technology) to try to defeat Barugon once and for all. When these plans fail miserably, it appears that only Gamera stands a chance of bringing Barugon's reign of terror upon Japan to an end. I'll understand this film's low rating, but believe me, as a Gamera fan (and Godzilla too), this is probably the best film in the series. Gamera is off-screen for the most part, and the new monster Barugon takes center stage laying waste to Japan. Forget the bad dubbing for once, too. The musical score is pretty exotic and atmospheric, almost comparable to anything featured in the "Godzilla" series of films. Still, for a movie that was made in '66, the effects hold up surprisingly well, even if it is easy to find the many faults with them. Believe it or not, I actually like the older kaiju films much rather than their special-effects/CGI-laden, modern-day counterparts. For these reasons, "Gamera vs. Barugon" gets a five out of 10 from me.
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