Gamera vs. Barugon (大怪獣決闘 ガメラ対バルゴン Daikaijū kettō: Gamera tai Barugon) is a 1966 Japanese kaiju film directed by Shigeo Tanaka. It is the second entry in the Gamera film series and was released directly to television in the United States by American International Television.
Barugon encounters Gamera and the two battle, with Gamera eventually being frozen solid.
In the meantime, while debating with Kano on how to recover the opal, which he still believes to be aboard the sunken ship, Onodera inadvertently blurts out that he killed his two companions and then murders both Kano and Kano's wife to cover up his crime. After finding Onodera, Keisuke and Karen subdue him and leave him tied up in his home. Keisuke and Karen travel to the Japanese defense ministry and suggest a plan using a huge diamond to lure Barugon into a lake to drown. The plan fails because the diamond's radiation proves to be not enough. Another attempt by irradiating the diamond with additional infrared radiation almost succeeds, until Onodera, having been released and informed of the diamond by his wife, steals the gem. Both he and the diamond, however, are immediately devoured by Barugon.
Keisuke discovers that mirrors are not affected by Barugon's rainbow ray, so the military devises a plan to reflect its own rainbow emanation back at it with a giant mirror. Barugon is wounded by its own ray, but despite prompting it cannot be goaded into repeating its mistake. Gamera thaws out and attacks Barugon once again, and after a destructive battle it drowns Barugon in Lake Biwa, then flies away. Remorseful over the disaster his greed has caused, with his brother now dead, and having found love with Karen, Keisuke decides to make a fresh start on the island where it all began.
The film features footage from the first Gamera film. Due to the commercial success of Gamera: The Giant Monster, the follow-up, Gamera vs. Barugon, had a expanded budget that Yuasa stated was 80 million yen.
Gamera vs. Barugon was released in Japan on 17 April 1966. The film was never released theatrically in the United States. It was first shown in the United states by American International Television as War of the Monsters with an English-language dub supervised by Salvatore Billitteri. The film was reissued to television and home video by King Features Entertainment in 1987 as Gamera vs. Barugon.
Japanese monster movies were often given bizarre translations in Germany. Most notably, references to the character Dr. Frankenstein were inserted into many of the movies released by Toho Studios, primarily their series of Godzilla films. As well, Godzilla characters like MechaGodzilla or Jet Jaguar were infamously renamed to King Kong. The German version of this movie carries one of the most bizarre such changes: Gamera is renamed to Barugon, and the actual Barugon is renamed to Godzilla. The movie was even given the alternate titles "Godzilla, der Drache aus dem Dschungel" ("Godzilla, the Dragon from the Jungle") and "Godzilla, Monster des Grauens" ("Godzilla, the Monster of Horror"). Confusing matters, on one of the movie's VHS covers, Gamera is shown fighting against the American Godzilla from Godzilla (1998) instead of Barugon.
The original idea for the film involved ice-based aliens invading Earth and oppressing humanity. Another idea the studio considered involved an ice giant from Scandinavian folklore. Eventually, the ice concept was carried over into Barugon's freezing ability.
The film was initially meant to be more adult-oriented, with the native island dancers appearing topless. While the movie was relatively serious and had some more adult moments such as intense fights, in the end the movie was released with child audiences in mind.
Since the Barugon suit wouldn't sink, it had to be cut into bits for the final scene when Gamera drags him into the water.
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