Sometimes Pulling Monsters Out Of Your Ass Might Not Work, Even In Japan
I love kaiju monster movies. For those who don’t know that is monster movies made in Japan where the monsters are played by guys in rubber suits. Great monsters have come out of this like Godzilla, Ghidorah, Mothra, Rodan, along with so many others. Hell, the Power Rangers monster battle is Kaiju footage used by the Sentai Ranger series. Well, when Power Rangers were good, they used sentai footage. When they had to use their own created CGI?
Yeah, The Folks At The Asylum Would Be So Proud
Anyway, kaiju has for most of the time created some of our favorite monsters. Unfortunately, as you have seen from the early Gamera movies…..
That Wasn’t Always The Case
Enter Shochiku, a company that mostly distributed anime films and kabuki (Japanese dance-drama). In fact, they rarely did something in the Sci-Fi/Horror realm that this year, the Eclipse series (Criterion’s foreign film series) did a box set on the four films that Shochiku did in that genre. So what do you get with a company that is not used to doing this, but does it because it was kaiju was the in thing in Japan (heck, every Japanese studio was making a kaiju film in 1967)? You get a monster based on space pollen.
No, I am not kidding you on that one. That is exactly what the X From Outer Space is. I remember seeing only half of this movie (was shown on either the Movie Channel, on one of the Encore stations, or Flix) and for a long ass time, I wanted to induct this into Monster Crap immediately and I believe in the early polls, I had this was one of the options, but it never got inducted because I don’t believe many people had heard of this film at the time. And when it got later on, I couldn’t nominate it because I did not have the DVD (same thing happened with The Giant Claw). Well thanks to the Eclipse series, I have this film and I can finally induct this film into Monster Crap. Although thanks to NegaSeth, I won’t even get the pleasure of nominating it. Bastard…
I Wouldn’t Call Me That Yet Because The Films Afterwards Will Be Worse
The film stars Eiji Okada, who’s earlier credits include his big break in the Japanese film Hiroshima, Mon Amour; Woman of the Dunes; and was personally chosen by Marlon Brando to star alongside him in The Ugly American. It also has Toshiya Wazaki (whose only other film at this point was Judo Showdown), Peggy Neal (who co-starred with Sonny Chiba in The Terror Beneath The Sea), Franz Gruber (who was also in The Terror Beneath The Sea), and Mike Daneen (who was also in that film and his first film was actually Rodan).
Well, since there isn’t much info other than that before the film was released, let’s get to inducting this film.
Note: Remember that I am using the English-Dub of this film.
You Will Have To Excuse The Subtitles For This And The Title, Those Crawls Weren’t Done In English.
And with one of the most abrupt opening scores, we get our title screen.
And we begin this movie at the site for a liftoff into outer space. An American with a nice beard has flown in with a package locked away into a steel box. Inside the building, they are talking about the flight plan. It is here where we meet our main characters, Dr. Shioda, Miyamoto, Lisa, and Capt. Sano
I’ve Noticed That With All Of The Four Films They Did In This Different Genre, Shochiku Always Had A Strange Thing With Adding A Blonde Woman. I Don’t Know Why To Be Exact, But There Is Always At Least One Blonde Woman In Their Films. Oh And She Is Always Played By An American Actor, Of Course.
We learn that the primary objective of this space launch is to orbit the planet Mars and land, if possible because previous Mars attempts have failed under mysterious circumstances. The only clue is that a UFO or something has crossed the flight path before each disaster. Because of that, the secondary mission is to find and report immediately any UFO so they can determine what caused the other missions to be aborted. Of course this crew will be getting a new spaceship called the AAB Gamma so hopefully things will go better this time. Sano is told that he is to take care of the spacecraft; Lisa is told that she is to collect specimens, but don’t touch anything without Capt. Sano’s okay; Shioda is told that his job is to monitor the physiological conditions of the crew; and Miyamoto is told begin communications with ground control right after last stage separation.
We learn that the bearded American from earlier is Dr. Burman and the package he delivered was the fuel for this little expedition. They are also told by the gentleman who came in with Dr. Burman that everything checks out and the launch is a go. Also, they get reassured that this spaceship has been designed to take care of any problems that might happen in this mission so this won’t be a one way trip although I’m damn sure he said that to all of the other crews of the past so I wouldn’t believe him for one stinking second.
After the briefing, we learn a bit about our crew in that Miyamoto is trying to get into Lisa’s pants with no luck whatsoever. Sano basically reminds Miyamoto that he is kind of an idiot because well, he kind of made the mistake of telling their position without turning on the microphone, which Lisa does a horrible and forced laugh at. Oh, I have the feeling that I am so going to love being with this crew and if you can’t tell that I am being sarcastic, this is here to tell you that of course I am being sarcastic.
Yeah, You Pretty Much Know The Score With Having Really Bad Models In Films From Back In The 60s. And Yet Somehow They Look Better Than Anything In That Abomination That Was The Clash Of The Titans Remake
They launch into outer space with no problems.
Although I’m Sure That Smoke There Is To Hide The Wire Connected To That Rocket.
The spaceship gets separated from the rocket as our mission begins.
The crew look outside to see Earth passing by them, when the spaceship is okay for them to walk in.
Back on the ground floor, Dr. Burman (in a terrible German accent) believes that the UFO must be responsible for the past mission failures. They wonder if the UFO is controlled from Mars or on another part of Earth since it has only appeared during past space missions to Mars. Of course, I have a different theory.
It’s Those Assholes From Planet X At It Again
Of course no sooner does the crew reach outer space when that UFO that has been causing problems shows up.
And of course, the guy who is supposed to observe the physiological conditions of the others, if having problems of his own. The crew strap themselves in and chase off the UFO. Communications are finally able to be made with the ground crew and it is told that the UFO just disappeared. And Shioda is fine after getting some liquid into him. The crew then makes for a rendezvous on the moon.
We learn that the person who is helping the crew land on the moon is Michiko.
It is shown through conversation that there is some tension between Capt. Sano and Michiko. Michiko tries to pass off her duties to someone else since she doesn’t want to speak to Sano, but she is forced to do her job. Remember people, you can have all the tension you want, but you better do your job.
And Random Black Guy Just Shrugs.
The spaceship lands without too much incident and Shioda is taken to sick bay to see what was wrong with him, but it turns out of course that Shioda just had a case of space sickness. At meal time, we learn that things grow much larger on the moon because of no atmosphere. Lisa gives Michiko some ear rings from Germany, which Sano is not too happy about because she snuck them aboard, to which Lisa uses the “I’m a woman” excuse. Then we get a random scene of people jumping up and down on the moon.
Like I Said, Completely Random
Afterwards, Sano and Miyamoto talk about things while having a bath. Meanwhile, Lisa is having a shower.
Better Hope Space Norman Bates’ Mom Doesn’t Appear.
Of course, we see that Michiko is kind of jealous as she likes Capt. Sano and so does Lisa of course. We are then told that Dr. Shioda has to be replaced thanks to his space sickness and ground control chooses Dr. Stein to be his replacement.
Dr. Stein Is Obviously Not Too Happy About The News
He initially refuses, but Sano tells him that orders are orders and that he will be the replacement. Lisa tries to get Sano to dance with her, but Sano refuses and instead heads to bed. Miyamoto of course takes his place and dances with Lisa.
The next day, the crew with the replacement get ready to head to Mars, but are warned that a meteor shower is incoming so they might want to be careful. And with them being in outer space, Dr. Stein decides this is the perfect time to be a whiny baby about space food not being that good. The meteor shower appears and it causes a hole into the ship which has to be sealed up.
And guess what seals that hole for the time being.
Yep, Miyamoto’s Butt Fills The Hole.
Now of course in a real situation a vacuum as strong as what is in outer space should mean that Miyamoto’s internal organs should be shooting out of his ass, which would mean a very nasty end for him, Miyamoto is just fine as they are able to seal the hole. The ground crew worries because this crew is now in the area where previous missions have ended tragically and if this one fails, then all future attempts will be cancelled.
They have to resuscitate Lisa because she faints from the accident and of course, she is fine after that. And of course the UFO just now decides to show up again.
They try to get away from the UFO, but they are getting pulled in by magnets. Sano decides that since the engines will be useless against the magnet and all they will be doing is wasting fuel, he turns the engines off despite Stein’s loud protests. Stein panics and tries to use the engines to get away and it seems that three people have a problem getting Stein away from the controls.
Back on moonbase, Michiko wants to be on a rescue ship to rescue the crew from their current situation, but her superior is against it. After that, everything is shockingly fine with us never seeing them be fine. Yeah, this is left unexplained as to what happened to keep things back to being calm and that is one of the problems this film has with it focusing on stuff that doesn’t seem important and not focusing on stuff that are important.
Lisa then notices some spores on the back of their spaceship and tells the others.
Yep, That Is Exactly What Our Monster Is Going To Come From
Sano decides to go out of the spaceship to take care of this situation, but Lisa decides to go with him despite Sano’s attempt to discourage her.
Lisa decides to take a sample as Sano wipes the rest of the pollen off the ship.
They then get back onto the ship after cleaning up.
Sano, This Is Not A Perfect Time To Be Space Surfing
After getting back communications, a rescue rocket is sent to give the crew spare fuel for the ride back and on this rescue ship is Michiko, of course.
Back on Earth, the scientists look at the strange spore that was taken from space while Dr. Burman invites the crew to his house for a party to celebrate the crew’s safe return. Of course, Dr. Stein won’t be there because he has a special date with his wife that was planned and that he was complaining about during the whole mission.
At the party, they get a phone call that the lab has been compromised with a hole on the floor, but the spore is still on the table. However, the spore breaks apart when they attempt to pick it up meaning something was in that spore and it is now gone.
They Also Find A Footprint Of Some Kind
The crew then mentions that it looks like the footprint of a big chicken. And there is why I mention this to be a space chicken. At a power plant nearby, power starts to drop for unknown reasons. When the crew then gets to the hotel, smoke and lights appear from a hill.
An explosion follows and out from that explosion appears…….
I mean seriously, that has to be one of the goofiest monsters I have ever seen. And remember boys and girls, that thing came from space pollen. And then it cuts to the next day with the monster gone.
I’m Not Kidding. This Film Has Really Awkward Jump Cuts.
After seeing a giant footprint, they go back to the lab where they have a meeting on this monster.
So Massive Evacuations Begin…
And The Monster Is Super-Imposed Into This Shot Terribly
We then cut to them mentioning that they tried every weapon known to man and nothing seems to stop this monster. Um Shochiku, you do know the adage of “show, don’t tell”, because you are pretty much failing at that. We don’t see one bit of clashing between the military and the monster before this line is said. It is at this meeting where they call the monster Guilala. Oh and then we see the tanks combating the monster.
Someone At Shochiku Did A Pretty Poor Job Of Editing This Film Together
Of course since this is a monster movie, we see the tanks having zero effect on Guilala.
And Guilala Shoots Fireballs Out Of Its Mouth
Rockets and planes join the fight, and they don’t have any effect on Guilala either.
Insert News Montage Here
After that, we see more destruction caused by the monster and the military having no way of stopping it.
No, Those Are Not Lasers. They Are Masers. I’ve Watched Enough Japanese Giant Monster Movies To Know The Difference.
Guilala grabs a ship and throws it at the military troops. Capt. Sano, Lisa, Miyamoto, and Michiko decide to go to the moon to conduct research to see if they can find out about the stuff that surrounded the spore. And after a repeat of old footage, they get to the moon.
Meanwhile Guilala Is Still Destroying Cities In Japan So This Trip To The Moon Seems More Like A Move Of….
Run Away, Run Away
Exactly. At the defense center….
They Apparently Have A Giant Board To Show What The Monster Has Destroyed.
The military seems to believe that Guilala looks like he is losing energy so he might try to find a source to recharge.
Guilala Continues Attacking Cities.
They call Lisa at the moon base and they get word that the stuff outside the spore (called Guilalalium, because why not) seems to work in sealing the monster inside a spore. They have of course found ample supply of it on the lunar rocks so they should be ready to deliver the stuff and make an attempt to stop Guilala. Dr. Burman and the Japanese scientist who I find out at this point is Dr. Kato, talk about their options and say that if this plan does not work, the only other option will be the H-Bomb.
Yeah, Let’s Hope That Guilalalium Works
The four who are at the moon head for Earth with the Guilalalium when a problem erupts as the ship starts going haywire. They originally believe it is that damn UFO, but it is actually something inside the ship. Sano has Lisa check the computer complex, but before she can get there, they find out that it is the Guilalalium that is causing the problems. Back on Earth, the people are getting worried about the chance that the rocket might not make it back in time to stop Guilala and the monster itself is destroying more stuff.
Like A Boss…..
Back on the rocket, things do not look good because at this current course, they are not going to be able to land on Earth and just orbit it. Lisa deduces that the only way they can lessen the effects of the Guilalalium on the ship is by cutting out all contact with the outside. They will have to do this by putting it in some kind of shelved compartment. Michiko thinks that putting it in a nuclear shield will work and the rest of the crew agree, but it is dangerous because it could affect the ship’s nuclear power plant. But they decide that the idea that might work, but might get them automatically killed………is at least worth a try.
Back on Earth, they find out that Guilala has been destroying atomic energy power plants which means he can revitalize himself with nuclear fuel so yeah, that option of the H-Bomb went out the window.
Apparently, Revitalizing Yourself To Guilala Means Turning Into A Giant Red Ball. Seems Godzilla & The Rest Of The Monsters From Japan Have Themselves A Way To Play A Good Game Of Dodgeball.
Of course when the ball hits water, it turns back into Guilala.
Aw Dang It…………The Monsters Just Lost Their Ball
Of course, when all hope seems lost, they just so happen to be able to re-establish contact with the rocket, but then the UFO decides to screw up things even more.
The crew then decides to attempt to get away from the UFO and this actually works. The rocket heads back to Earth and not a moment too soon as Guilala is heading in their direction. They then decide since Guilala wants the Nuclear Energy, they will give it to him, but it will be replaced with Guilalalium. Guilala shows up and uppercuts a signal tower into the rocket.
That Is Freaking Awesome
While getting ready, Michiko runs to them and says that Lisa is hurt. When they asked how it happened, Michiko said that Lisa went back for some papers. I’m going to be it was for the script, seeing how ditsy Lisa has been through this film.
Someone Save Me….
Hahahahahahaha……No One Will Save You This Time
But luckily for her, Sano and Miyamoto (along with others) are there to save her.
Blast………..Foiled Again, And Not Even By Dudley Do Right This Time
Capt. Sano and Miyamoto then decide since Guilala is coming to the building that they will lure him away with actual nuclear fuel. They load it up and Guilala gives chase.
Guilala grabs the cargo and throws out Sano, who despite being very high up, falls with zero injuries. Actually Miyamoto is the one with the ankle sprain after jumping out of the vehicle before it explodes. Back at the base, they are informing the crew to be ready to give Guilala the Guilalalium via missiles from planes. The planes attack and the Guilalalium works as no matter how many planes Guilala takes down, the Guilalalium has more of an effect.
They then warn that Guilala cannot be destroyed and if the Guilalalium separates from the spore again, the monster will return. So the crew decides to send it back to outer space. A rocket launches off as Dr. Burman talks to Lisa. Burman asks Lisa if she has told Sano how she feels about him, to which she tearfully responds that Guilala taught her that the heart demands courage. Basically she knows that Michiko also loves Sano more than her, and Lisa is going to let Michiko have him. We then see Sano walking with Michiko and they talk about Guilala being on an endless journey into space since this unmanned rocket was sent outside of their solar system, which probably means the rocket will break down from pressure of some kind before it even reaches the solar system. They hold hands as our film ends with a shot a shot of the rocket.
Guilala Is Probably Saying “I’ll Get You Next Time, Japan. Next Time!!!!!”
I can’t tell you how well this film did because there is no record for how well this film did that I could find. However, what I do know is this is a cult film so much so that in 2008, a sequel was made by the Guilala Production Committee and released by Shochiku called The Monster X Strikes Back: Attack The G8 Summit.
Unlike the original though, this was shot as a complete comedy with political satire. If you want my opinion of the sequel, I am embarrassed to say that I have not seen it, but it is on top of my Netflix movie queue and when I do see it, I will tell you if it is good or bad on my twitter page www.twitter.com/SethDrakin. I also know that the actor who played Capt. Sano, actually is in this film, but sadly no one else.
Oh and let’s not forget that Guilala was in an American commercial for “The Ladders”.
I Remember Seeing That Commercial And Instantly Recognizing The Monster. Heck, Even My Parents Who Barely Watched The Film Recognized Guilala.
The most known actor at the time, Eiji Okada (who played Dr. Kato) did get a noteworthy film credit for playing Chief Ozawa in the 1983 Japanese film Antarctica. But sadly, Mr. Okada died in 1995 due to heart failure. As I had mentioned, Toshiya Wazaki (who played Capt. Sano) appeared in the sequel to this film, but was also cast in the first two Lone Wolf & Cub movies. Hiroshi Fujioka (who is credited in this film) became a famous actor in Japan playing Takeshi Hongo, the alter-ego of a famous Japanese TV superhero that a few people who read these blogs might know.
Yes, It’s Kamen Rider!!!!
He was also the Sega Saturn’s “icon/mascot/spokesman”, which from what I have been told was a huge hit in Japan. He also voiced acted as Ryo’s father in Shenmue.
My overall thoughts about is movie is well, it is okay. There are so many bad things like the terrible dubbing (the Japanese version is no better), the jump cuts (I can’t believe someone edited this film and thought this was okay), and the fact that the monster is made from space pollen. However while the monster looks ridiculous, you just have to laugh and love it because it is so goofy, yet instantly recognizable. The X From Outer Space is actually a film that I recommend any fan of my site give a viewing to because just seeing the monster alone is worth the damn experience of everything. So yeah…..while it is not a good film on a technical level, I completely understand the cult appeal to this film and as far as kaiju goes, Guilala will never be forgotten so if that was what Shochiku hoped to accomplish, then they succeeded.
So NegaSeth, while I am upset that the fans didn’t get to choose this film, this wasn’t a painful watch. This torture of yours should be easy.
You Speak Too Soon. The X From Outer Space Was The Easiest One.
What do you mean?
The X From Outer Space was a film I chose because it was to let you have a false sense of security before I show you the torturous films. Heck, this next film is one that you have gotten a few requests for, but your excuse was you have never seen it. Well, now you are going to and since you are a fan of pro wrestling. I give you……
Raphael……….You Have The Floor.