Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction AVAILABLE NOW

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omgitsgodzilla
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Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction AVAILABLE NOW

Postby omgitsgodzilla » Mon Jan 02, 2017 7:51 pm

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The Monster Zero reconstruction is available now!

The 1080p HD reconstruction of Monster Zero is completed and available to download! Send a private message for details.

Notes on this release:

  • The Toho transfer had its contrast and saturation boosted to alleviate its flat appearance.
  • This version was synchronized to the Simitar widescreen DVD to ensure accuracy, but uses the Classic Media audio (synchronized to the Simitar audio) to avoid some volume and balance inconsistencies in the Simitar audio.
  • The opening Henry G. Saperstein/UPA logos, most of the opening credits, and the Lake Myojin/Washigasawa location titles were carefully digitally recreated.
  • The expository text at the beginning, the English newspaper headlines, the English insert of Namikawa's letter to Glenn and the end title card are presented using a combination of the Simitar DVD (to retain the entire image) and the Classic Media DVD (to reduce artifacting around the text itself).
  • The Toho transfer is typically missing a handful of frames at the beginning and end of each reel. Where the missing frames couldn't be compensated for in a satisfactory fashion, the sound/sync reference was trimmed to match what was there.

Original post:

Well, now that Ghidrah is out and hell year is over, looks like it's time to move on to Monster Zero! So far all I've done is create the project file, add a rip of the Simitar DVD that I'll be using as my guide and possibly the source for certain parts, and create usable rips of the Classic Media DVD and the Japanese Blu-ray. I'll probably be approaching this in much the same way I did Ghidrah, only the syncing process will probably not take nearly as long, since only minimal edits were made to the film for the US version.

After this project's done, I may take on a couple simple projects before moving on to the others I have planned. Depending on the level of interest, I may also undertake the recreation of the export version of this film, titled Invasion of the Astro-Monsters, which features a slightly different soundtrack and a few bits the Monster Zero version cuts out. (I'll be working from an SD reconstruction provided by ultrase7en, so I can't really vouch for the absolute accuracy of what I'll be creating, but it'll be an interesting side project.) I'll probably open up a poll on that one when I finish this first version. What I'll almost definitely be doing is creating a new, more accurate version of my AIP Destroy All Monsters reconstruction based on some info provided by Space Hunter M - specifically, I'll be taking a different approach to the splices in the reference copy and correcting some other small errors and issues with the old version.

But first, there's Monster Zero. I'll be starting by syncing the HD Japanese footage to the Simitar DVD, which is the best source available that's actually taken from a US film element (unlike CM's DVD). Then there's the matter of recreating the logos, title and credits in HD in as many cases as possible. There are a few spots where I'll have to revert to SD sources, but since the title and credits mostly appear over static backgrounds, I'll be able to recreate the vast majority. There are also a couple of unique visuals during the film proper in the US version; I predict I'll be able to recreate some of them, but others (I'm thinking of Namikawa's note and possibly the newspaper headlines) will have to be left in SD. For the final touch, I'll be comparing the quality of the Simitar and Classic Media audio tracks, and if the CM track is any better I'll probably sync that up to the film.
Last edited by omgitsgodzilla on Wed Jan 25, 2017 8:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby cmdmstudios » Mon Jan 02, 2017 8:17 pm

Ah, Monster Zero. If it weren't for this film, I probably wouldn't be here. I shall patiently await for updates on this project.
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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby GodzillaFanatic2001 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 8:36 pm

Sounds good. Can't wait to see this. The opening credits could probably be redone similar to the ones in Ghidrah, correct?
HayesAJones wrote:
Godzilla 2000 wrote:Its harmless fun, pure and simple.

As opposed to those dangerously fun movies.


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edgaguirus wrote:Great for any afternoon. Or late night movie.

But not the morning. No, no... Never the morning.
This movie's quality improves by 50% when viewed past noon.

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby Kore321 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 8:50 pm

Awesome! I love to see the different versions of these movies. That is why I save my VHS versions. ;) You do a great job reconstructing the films and I really appreciate it! Keep up the great work as always!

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby ultrase7en » Tue Jan 03, 2017 9:00 am

Monster Zero is arguably my favorite Showa Godzilla film so I will be very excited to check this out!

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby GodzillaBurgh » Tue Jan 03, 2017 4:17 pm

Ah yes, Monster Zero. One of the most interesting films of the Showa era, and it has one of my all time favorite themes by Akira Ifukube - "Great Monster War March". Such an awesome theme. :D
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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby Great Hierophant » Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:10 pm

Fortunate for us that there was a true widescreen version released of this film for mining the inserts, but it adds up to only some seconds. If you get to Godzilla vs. The Thing and Gigantis the Fire Monster, they add up into the minutes. The Scimitar GvtT is a non-anamorphic DVD transfer, which means it has lower resolution than an anamorphic DVD transfer would (CM's is cropped to 1.78:1). All Gigantis' sources derive from video copies of the films. There are about three inserts for AIP's Godzilla vs. the Smog Monster with no widescreen source available, as shown in SpaceHunterM's recent reconstruction.

These title screen and credit recreations appear to be very some of the most time consuming and challenging aspects of these reconstructions. Walter Reade-Sterling's Son of Godzilla TV version axed the credits, so there is less work there for a widescreen TV version. Godzilla's Revenge appears to be on par with Monster Zero in terms of what needs replacing. The three Cinema Shares films seem challenging only for the logo and the title screens and timing edits. Bob Conn's theatrical release of "Terror of Godzilla" is also more about the title screen and edits.

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby omgitsgodzilla » Wed Jan 04, 2017 4:11 pm

Great Hierophant wrote:These title screen and credit recreations appear to be very some of the most time consuming and challenging aspects of these reconstructions. Walter Reade-Sterling's Son of Godzilla TV version axed the credits, so there is less work there for a widescreen TV version. Godzilla's Revenge appears to be on par with Monster Zero in terms of what needs replacing. The three Cinema Shares films seem challenging only for the logo and the title screens and timing edits. Bob Conn's theatrical release of "Terror of Godzilla" is also more about the title screen and edits.

The titles and credits are the most time-consuming and labor-intensive aspect by far, except maybe the color matching in Godzilla 1985. Even when the font is fairly easy to find, the kerning is almost never the same as the digital font's, so each letter usually has to be placed individually.

As for Son of Godzilla, I've discussed the available sources with Space Hunter M and, basically, sufficient materials to create textless widescreen versions of the credits don't exist. For that movie, I'm thinking I'll probably produce a pan-and-scan version that's faithful to the original presentation and a widescreen version that takes a few liberties.
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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby GodzillaFanatic2001 » Wed Jan 04, 2017 5:46 pm

For Terror Of Mechagodzilla, which version would you reconstruct, the Bob Conn cut, or the Henry G.Saperstein cut?
HayesAJones wrote:
Godzilla 2000 wrote:Its harmless fun, pure and simple.

As opposed to those dangerously fun movies.


GalacticPetey wrote:
eabaker wrote:
edgaguirus wrote:Great for any afternoon. Or late night movie.

But not the morning. No, no... Never the morning.
This movie's quality improves by 50% when viewed past noon.

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby omgitsgodzilla » Thu Jan 05, 2017 8:17 am

I might do both depending on whether I can get reliable info on the Bob Conn version; namely where the title card was placed, whether the credits were otherwise the same as the home video version, and whether there were any additional logos at the beginning.
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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby Great Hierophant » Thu Jan 05, 2017 5:05 pm

omgitsgodzilla wrote:As for Son of Godzilla, I've discussed the available sources with Space Hunter M and, basically, sufficient materials to create textless widescreen versions of the credits don't exist. For that movie, I'm thinking I'll probably produce a pan-and-scan version that's faithful to the original presentation and a widescreen version that takes a few liberties.


Comparing my VHS rip of the Walter Reade Sterling version with my Sony DVD of the (Recreated) International Version, I see what you mean. The same footage is used during the cast and crew credits, but the WRS version is textless. WRS may have been concerned that between their Pan & Scan and the viewer's TVs, too many letters of the text would be cropped, so they obtained a textless version of the credits from Toho.

Since there is no Blu-ray release of the Recreated International Version, (Kraken Releasing, where are you?), the only HD source that is available is the Toho Blu-ray. I don't know what the Japanese credits look like. The text removal you did for the Destroy All Monsters title screen reconstruction may be feasible with the crisp white lettering of the Sony DVD (although there is motion here, unlike DAM), but if the Japanese text credits are fancy and colored, oh boy would that be above and beyond the call.

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby omgitsgodzilla » Thu Jan 05, 2017 6:25 pm

I've looked at the Japanese credits, the recreated International credits and the pan-and-scanned US version and the only way it could even hypothetically be accomplished is blocking off the Japanese credits using the Sony DVD, then blocking off the International credits using the US version, but even that apparently wouldn't be possible.

Anyway, one of the Xilian extras reminded me of this John Mulaney bit so this joke video happened:

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby GodzillaBurgh » Thu Jan 05, 2017 6:36 pm

I also find it very interesting that MONSTER ZERO and WAR OF THE GARGANTUAS were released as a double feature in US theaters, since UPA/Henry G. Saperstein were the US distributors.
"Just as you distrust us, then we distrust others as well. What's wrong? We're all human. As humans we are responsible for each other, we're related. Refuse us then you'll abandon your brothers. We must learn to help each other." - Ichiro Sakai, Godzilla vs. The Thing

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby Great Hierophant » Thu Jan 05, 2017 9:08 pm

GodzillaBurgh wrote:I also find it very interesting that MONSTER ZERO and WAR OF THE GARGANTUAS were released as a double feature in US theaters, since UPA/Henry G. Saperstein were the US distributors.


Not just the distributors, they also co-produced these films and Frankenstein Conquers the World. UPA and Saperstein provided the means for Nick Adams and Russ Tamblyn to go to Japan.

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby GodzillaBurgh » Fri Jan 06, 2017 3:02 pm

Oh yeah, I also forgot. But still, It would be awesome if Toho or someone else had better quality of the US-exclusive scenes for FRANKENSTEIN CONQUERS THE WORLD, then we could be able to do a proper reconstruction/ fan-edit. :)
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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby Servanov » Fri Jan 06, 2017 3:35 pm

I visited the Smoky Mountains once during the summer of 2015, and on the TV guide I noticed that some Godzilla movies were playing on El Rey, so I planned to watch them. When I watched them as they were being broadcast (since I couldn't record on the cabin DirecTv box), I noticed that they were actually in HD. Faux HD (which means they were upscaled and enhanced) from the Classic Media DVD. Obviously I was not able to make a capture of it, but I thought that it was really strange they would broadcast those in upscaled HD, especially since it was El Rey who, in my area, broadcasts only in SD. All that aside, as always, good luck on your project and I eagerly wait to see the final product!

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby omgitsgodzilla » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:29 pm

I've heard conflicting accounts of El Rey's broadcast quality; someone who watched this last Kaiju Christmas marathon said that at least some of the films were being broadcast straight from old video masters in pretty poor quality.
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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby goji1986 » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:56 pm

omgitsgodzilla wrote:I've heard conflicting accounts of El Rey's broadcast quality; someone who watched this last Kaiju Christmas marathon said that at least some of the films were being broadcast straight from old video masters in pretty poor quality.


I can verify that. Saw a few of the Showa titles and they were definitely SD upscaled to HD.
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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby GodzillaBurgh » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:11 pm

They should've used Red Menace's fan edit versions. At least his are accurate. :huge:
"Just as you distrust us, then we distrust others as well. What's wrong? We're all human. As humans we are responsible for each other, we're related. Refuse us then you'll abandon your brothers. We must learn to help each other." - Ichiro Sakai, Godzilla vs. The Thing

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Re: Monster Zero - Red Menace HD reconstruction

Postby Great Hierophant » Fri Jan 06, 2017 6:54 pm

I hope none of the old video masters they were using were of the pan and scan variety.


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