DVD Title
 Dogora
International Title
 Dogora
Movie Length: 81 minutes Original Length: 81 minutes
Company: Tokyo Shock (Media Blasters) Release: 2005
Aspect Ratio: 2:35:1 Anamorphic: Yes
Region: 1 Discs: 1
  
Language/Sound: Order
Japanese (1.0 Mono), English (1.0 Mono)
Subtitles:
English
Extras
· Menus (Japanese)
· Chapters (12)
· Trailers: Dogora, Varan (Tokyo Shock), The Mysterians (Tokyo Shock), Matango, Gappa (US)
· Photo Gallery
Captures
Review
Anthony Romero

Tokyo Shock takes off their training wheels for this one, as at the time of release they had no region 2 release of the movie to fall back on. To sum up their efforts: mixed at best, with a decent video and audio presentation that is supplemented with hardly any new extras for those who have picked up the previous titles from the firm.


 Video: Star Rating

The company's first foray into making a video track from scratch for a Toho film is met with mixed results. The first thing to note are the colors, which look very vibrant on this release. Sadly, this effect was achieved through over saturating the source, resulting in an unnatural looking color spectrum at times. The brightness level, to compensate for the darker hues, was also beefed up. This, sadly, has a fairly negative effect on things like lab coats and other details, which now look washed out. As for the shape of the print used, it tends to be in good condition for most of the duration. In general, there are some minor scratches, while there is a minor amount of grain present as well. Sadly, the shape of the print isn't consistent. For example, there is some noticeable print damage that occurs during the opening credit sequence, as seen here with the vertical yellow line. As expected, any scenes with stock footage or super imposition sport a much more apparent amount of print damage as well, with a prime example seen here. In spite of its faults, the print is still in very good shape considering the film's age. Regretfully, the movie has also been cropped on all four sides, an aspect which is obvious when comparing this release to Toho's region 2 Dogora DVD:

region 1 - region 2

Dogora is presented on the disc in its original aspect ratio of 2.35:1, or Toho Scope, and is Anamorphic for widescreen TVs.


 Audio:

The company's standard array of options for the audio presentation are gone for this release, but the basics are here, and presented well enough that it's hard to be cross about it.

In total, there are two audio tracks present. The first is a 2.0 mono track in English of the, horrendous, international dubbing for the film. For the record, this is the same dubbing used on AIP's TV release in the US, so those that have nostalgic attachment to it would likely be pleased to see its inclusion here. As for the quality of the audio track, it's certainly not perfect. The entire audio track, in fact, sounds like the upper volume levels have been reduced, making everything sound flat, even for a mono track. Quality is also iffy, with the dialogue sometimes sounding rough as the source was clearly not in the best of condition. The audio track wavers in and out too, although very rarely, with the clearest example happening when the bridge collapses.

The other audio track present is a 2.0 mono presentation of the film's original Japanese audio track. Thankfully, this audio track is just about flawless. The volume levels are all maintained well here, while there are no pops or crackles to be heard. As expected with the mono format, there is no speaker distinction, and while a stereo or surround option would have been a nice addition, the mono track still gets the job done.

The Japanese track is accompanied by, removable, English subtitles. The subtitle job on this disc is fairly faithful, a few typos aside, while a second set of subtitles can be turned on for the English dubbed track, which will translate Japanese text seen in the film.


 Extras: Star Rating

Tokyo Shock takes their swing at trying to stock this disc with extras from their own resources, and comes up noticeably short. It wouldn't be fair to call it a bare bones release, but it's pretty close. The first extra on this disc is a large array of production stills related to the film, all in black and white. Unfortunately, the quality of the photos leaves some to be desired, with the brightness level often set high enough that it washes out most of the detail while circular edges in the pictures look very rough, like a "gif" image that has been enlarged.

The other extra here is the film's original trailer and some select previews. Dogora's trailer is in good condition, with very little print damage present and with no digital inconsistencies to speak of. It has the same color problems of the film found on the DVD, though, and is also likewise cropped. The other original trailer present is for Matango, which, thankfully, has been spared any tampering. The Varan trailer though isn't as fortunate, as it now sports an overlapped English title and is no longer anamorphic. It's not enough to get upset over, certainly less than was done for Tokyo Shock's cheesy The Mysterians trailer, which is also present. The last trailer here, and the only one which isn't Toho, is the US trailer for Gappa.


 Overview: Star Rating

Bottom line, the disc is lacking a bit, especially compared to other efforts from the company released around the same time. That said, still far from a bad release for those just looking to enjoy the movie without much concern for the extras.