Gamera 2 (Gamera vs. Legion)

Weekly Alibi

DIRECTED BY: Shusuke Kaneko

REVIEWED: 10-13-97

According to this, the second installment in the new, improved adventures of Gamera, all the world really needs is a giant flying turtle--and I'm inclined to agree. Who else are you gonna rely on when a freak meteor shower brings a race of big, lobster-like insects to earth? Godzilla? That fat bastard would be right alongside the damnable horde of space bugs as they march across Japan! No, it's up to Gamera ("The Guardian of the Universe"), who comes rocketing from the sea to deal swift justice to the invaders. Our human heroes occupy themselves with dissecting one of the alien critters, discovering that they feed on silicon and have no muscles--instead, their limbs function by the use of pressurized gas (much like my own). Meanwhile, the nasty bugs build a nest, growing a giant flower (!) that will eject a seed pod into space, allowing the bugs to travel to new planets. Unfortunately, the resulting explosion levels the surrounding area and our heroic turtle along with it. As a group of new-age types stand around trying to will Gamera back to life with tender feelings, the marauding bugs make their way toward Tokyo, laying waste to the hapless army. I doubt I'm spoiling anything by telling you that Gamera is revived and proceeds to kick ass on the monster insects, puking up fireballs like a bug-eyed kitty-kat in need of castor oil. While the betusked turtle has never been as cool as Godzilla, these new flicks are right up there; and G2 features some of the best Giant Monster effects I've ever seen. Rent it!

--Scott Phillips

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