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Gamera: Guardian of the Universe


Price: CDN$ 170.54
Only 1 left in stock.
Ships from and sold by M and N Media Canada.
3 new from CDN$ 170.36 9 used from CDN$ 17.99 1 collectible from CDN$ 20.95

Product Details

  • Actors: Tsuyoshi Ihara, Akira Onodera, Shinobu Nakayama, Ayako Fujitani, Yukijirô Hotaru
  • Directors: Shûsuke Kaneko
  • Writers: Matt Greenfield, James Shanks, Kazunori Itô
  • Producers: Hiroyuki Kato, John Ledford, Matt Greenfield, Seiji Urushido
  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Dubbed, DVD-Video, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Sma Distribution
  • Release Date: Nov. 11 2003
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000844JH
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #112,702 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: DVD
Long ago, back when there were plenty of Godzilla-ripoffs, there was one series that stood above the rest: Gamera. Gamera was the most popular of these, most likely because it appealed largely to children (outside of Gamera vs. Barugon, which may have been the best of the older series.) By and large, the Gamera series was a joke. With cheap, often-poorly designed costumes, poor and predictable plots, and an over-reliance on Gamera, "Hero of the Children," it's amazing it went on for as long as it did.
In 1995, Gamera: Guardian of the Universe was released, with a completely different approach. This new Gamera, directed by Shusuke Kaneko, abandons the old plotline, as Godzilla 1985 did with the Godzilla series, and brings the audience into a new, darker Gamera, relying on myth rather than children.
The story begins when a Japanese vessel carrying radioactive material runs aground in the middle of the sea. A mysterious floating atoll has been found and is heading towards Japan. On an island elsewhere, Dr. Nagamine has discovered a giant species of "birds" that have eaten the entire population of the island and one of her fellow scientists. Back at the atoll, a science team led by Professor Kusanagi finds many comma-shaped stones on the atoll, as well as a large 2001-esque monolith buried in it. When the professor's assistant touches the monolith, it breaks apart, as does the atoll. Back with the "birds", the Japanese government stages a plan to capture them as an endangered species, but their efforts are thwarted when Gamera, the creature within the atoll, arrives to destroy the creatures himself.
The beginning of the movie is very disjointed, thus the shaky plot summary.
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By A Customer on May 12 2004
Format: DVD
Before I review the importance of this film, allow me to digress.
Why is a film that incorporates CGI considered to have "better special effects" than effects done using minitures and costumes? To this point, within a couple frames:
a> You can tell "immediately" if a creature is done in CGI.
b> You can tell "immediately" if a creature is a costume.
In both cases, the effect is ineffective in that you know it's a special effect. Something either looks convincing, that is "real" and you can't identify the technique used to create it, or it does not. It's a boolean thing. Having said that, the Japanese effects >tradition< of using minitures and costumes is as equally unconvincing as CGI - however, the live action style is more vivid, and interesting. I prefer the elaborate minitures, costumes, and physical effects and find them far, far, more entertaining than something produced on a laptop with a 3D software package.
Secondly, realize that most Japanese kaiju flicks are done on a 10 million dollar budget. It was amazing in the 60's as it is now that an effects film can be realized at all with such a paltry budget. The shooting schedule of this films is also break-neck.
The reason this Gamera film is important is that it re-defined a genre. Many films and filmmakers try, few succeed. It's "The Unforgiven" (western) or The Excorsist (horror) of kaiju.
Most negative reviews of this film cite effects techniques and dubbing (it's nearly impossible to accurately dub english/japanese it's a different language, of course the lips won't synch...) These reviewer are xenophobic.
In summary, Gamera is an IMPORTANT film as it redifined an entire genre. Critics who point to effects technics and dubbing are xenophobic. Long live minitures and rubber suits! The Japanese (not the US) make the best anime and big bug, saturday matinee sci fi from the 50's to today.
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By thatboyK on March 21 2004
Format: DVD
Despite the Gamera in the 60's that was aim towards kids this turtle is back!!When i first saw this I was Blown away I mean The SPX effect are ten times better the Newer godzilla films.
This suits and all were just Damm thats look cool.I mean who ever created this new gamera environment had the right idea and Meen damm he did a good job.All i have to say this on the other 2 Gamera films are a 5 star in my book.
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Format: DVD
When director Shusuke Kaneko and screenwriter Kazumori Ito revived the kiddie kaiju hero Gamera, they also revived the kaiju genre itself. The pair reached back beyond the day glow colored kiddie slug fests of the late 60s and 70s, stretching all the way back to the genres golden era, the 50s and early 60s. Rather than treat the flying turtle as a joke, they drafted an intelligent and mature monster story that builds to the city crumbling battles every fan of the genre knows and loves. This is the movie to show friends and family who think watching man in suit monster movies is strictly for kids. Highest recommendation.
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Format: DVD
Gamera is reborn, complete with his spinning shell of disaster! A ship carrying enough plutonium to make the whole planet glow, runs aground on a mysterious, moving atoll. Some time later, a research team finds the tiny island and digs out a bizarre metallic monolith with ancient runes carved into it. The atoll turns out to be Gamera! It seems he has returned after thousands of years to face a threat of biblical proportions. Gyaos, the gigantic bat-lizard has laid eggs on a remote island. They've hatched, releasing three gyaos monsters that start eating villagers and their pets almost immediately! The government, in it's godlike wisdom, decides to capture the gyaos critters in a retractable domed baseball stadium. Well, Gamera arrives, throwing the government's plans into the toilet. The military bombards the big turtle mercilessly, protecting the gyaos babies. Gamera manages to squash one of them, while the military tranquilizes the other two. Fortunately, only one survives, cutting it's way out of it's cage with laser breath. It grows to horrific size, and sets out to obliterate Tokyo. Here comes Gamera again! He's made a psychic connection with a young girl, who suffers when he suffers, and gains strength from her somehow. Together, they face Gyaos in a no-holds-barred final conflict! My 8yo son and I both cheered for the big turtle...
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