Ishirô Honda

Ishirô Honda – Gasu ningen dai ichigo AKA The Human Vapor (1960)

Synopsis:
A librarian is subject to a scientific experiment which goes wrong and transforms him into ‘The Human Vapour’. He uses his new ability to rob banks to fund the career of his girlfriend, a beautiful dancer. The Human Vapour is ruthless in his quest for money and kills anyone who stands in his way, especially police. He soon becomes Tokyo’s most wanted criminal. Can he be stopped before he kills again? Read More »

Ishirô Honda – Furankenshutain tai chitei kaijû Baragon AKA Frankenstein Conquers The World (1965)

With Berlin falling, Nazi doctors ship the beating heart of the Frankenstein monster to Tokyo by U-boat. A Japanese military scientistin Hiroshima intends to use the heart, which cannot die, to create an army of invincible soldiers. Unfortunately, the heart is barely unpacked when the U.S. Air Force A-bombs the city. Nothing more is heard of the matter until a feral boy with a strange brow shows up fifteen years later… Read More »

Ishirô Honda – Uchu daisenso aka Battle in Outer Space (1959)

Quote:
With his name firmly ensconced in film history as the creator of the Godzilla and Rodan films, director Inoshiro Honda continues to shape and mold a dramatic sci-fi story in Battle in Outer Space. As in the record-setting Star Wars sagas of the future, special effects also get star billing here. The nations of the earth are banding together to fight off invaders from outer space. At the core of their defense is an attack in which two space ships from the earth land on the moon — the aliens have set up their base of operations there. But this pre-emptive strike is not enough because back on terra firma, heat-ray guns are called into action as the invasion of flying saucers swings into a full-scale operation. Read More »

Ishirô Honda – Bijo to Ekitainingen aka The H-Man (1958)

When a narcotics deal goes sour and a suspect disappears, leaving only his clothes, Tokyo police question his wife and stake out the nightclub where she works. His disappearance stumps the police – until a young scientist appears who claims that H-Bomb tests in the Pacific, evidenced by a “ghost ship” that has turned up in the harbor, have created radioactive creatures – “H-Men” – who ooze like slime and dissolve anyone they touch. Read More »

Ishirô Honda – Gojira AKA Godzilla (1954)

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Quote:
One of the longest-running series in film history began with Ishiro Honda’s grim, black-and-white allegory for the devastation wrought on Japan by the atomic bomb. As his visual metaphor, Honda uses a 400-foot tall mutant dinosaur called Gojira, awakened from the depths of the sea as a rampaging nuclear nightmare, complete with glowing dorsal fins and fiery, radioactive breath. Crushing ships, villages, and buildings in his wake, Gojira marches toward Tokyo, bringing all of the country’s worst nightmares back until an evil more terrible bomb — capable of sucking all the oxygen from the sea — returns the monster to its watery grave. The original film is chilling, despite some rather unconvincing man-in-a-suit special effects, and brimming with explicitly-stated anti-American sentiment. All of that was removed for the U.S. release directed by Terry Morse. It was replaced with bad dubbing and tedious added footage starring Raymond Burr. The resulting edit was just another monster movie, but was still popular enough to assure future Toho Studios monster films a wide American release. Gojira No Gyakushu (1955) was next in the series. Read More »

Ishirô Honda – Mekagojira no gyakushu AKA Terror of Mechagodzilla (1975)

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Plot Synopsis by Jason Buchanan
A race of malevolent aliens bent on world domination unleash the ultimate weapon of destruction on mankind, leaving them with no hope for survival but the power of the mighty Godzilla. Their galaxy dying, the endangered aliens discover a planet that could save them from extinction if it wasn’t already populated. In order to solve that significant problem, the scheming extraterrestrials construct Mechagodzilla, a 400 foot destroyer of worlds armed with powerful lasers and guided missiles. As Godzilla prepares to face off against his powerful intergalactic doppelganger, the traitorous Professor Mafuni lends his genius to the aliens to create the mighty Titanosauraus. Titanosauraus is a massive amphibious dinosaur that Professor Controls via a biomechanical connection with his android daughter Katsura. But just as it begins to appear as if all hope has been lost for both Godzilla and the human race, Interpol agents discover that Titanosauraus has one weakness that may give the Godzilla the crucial edge that he needs in order to emerge victorious. Read More »

Ishirô Honda – Chikyu Boeigun AKA The Mysterians (1957)

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Aliens arrive on Earth and ask permission to be given a certain tract of land for their people to live on. But when they are discovered to be invaders, responsible for the giant robot that is destroying cities, the armed forces attempt to stop them with every weapon available. -imdb

Review:
We have always enjoyed the early Japanese Fantasy Films circa 1954-1963. During this time they took themselves and there subjects seriously. What ever their technical short comings were you could see they were in earnest. Basically after this period starting with KING KONG -vs- GODZILLA the slide down to kiddy fare began just a step above STARMAN. Read More »