DVD Title
 Godzilla vs. Hedorah
International Title
 Godzilla vs. Hedorah
Movie Length: 85 minutes Original Length: 85 minutes
Company: Tristar Release: 2004
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Anamorphic: Yes
Region: 1 Discs: 1
  
Language/Sound: Order
Japanese (2.0 Mono), English (2.0 Mono)
Subtitles:
English, French
Extras
· Menus (English)
· Chapters (12)
· Trailers: Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (Teaser), Godzilla the Series - Monster Wars, Kaena: The Prophecy (US), Steamboy (US), The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra, Godzilla: Save the Earth
Captures
Review
Anthony Romero

The first of Tristar's 2004 October releases comes Godzilla vs. Hedorah, which is easily Godzilla's strangest outing to date. Tristar continues to improve on their Godzilla releases, with their latest batch of DVDs being slight improvements compared with the company's March release of Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla. In general, Godzilla vs. Hedorah has a great video and audio presentation, although it still falls short in terms of extras.


 Video: Star Rating

Overall, the video presentation on Godzilla vs. Hedorah is excellent, arguably the best the film has ever looked on home video. The best aspect of this DVD is easily the very vibrant colors; Hedorah's crimson eyes and Godzilla's sun basked entrance look stunning on this transfer. Unfortunately, the brightness level isn't so perfect, as the film looks darker than it should here. This is most noticeable during the movie's two night battles in which some details are hard to make out, such as Hedorah's Land Form sloshing his hand around in the sludge at his feet. Digital inconstancies are handled well here, with the film looking very sharp with hardly any signs of pixilation.

The print used in the transfer is the International version of the film, with the only change being to the title which now has the ® and ™ characters added (was this really necessary?). The print used could have been in a little better condition though, with there being a few scratches and a lot of grain near the start of the film, although this improves as the movie goes on. There is a bit of light shimmer, a unnatural fading from light to dark often appearing on the edge of films, on this release, which occurs during some of the scenes involving the TV when there is a image superimposed on it.

Godzilla vs. Hedorah is presented in its original aspect ratio of 2.35:1, and is Anamorphic for widescreen TVs.


 Audio: Star Rating

Tristar opts to maintain the film's original audio format here, as opposed to trying to create a stereo track for the movie. As standard for Tristar's Toho releases now, and a very appreciated feature, this disc contains both the original Japanese audio track and the English International dub track (sorry, no "Save the Earth" song). The Japanese track here sounds flawless, given the limitations of the mono track, and is very faithful to how the film was intended to be heard. The English dub track is handled well too, although the dialogue seems to overpower the other background noises in terms of the volume levels.

The audio is complimented by removable subtitles, both in English and French. It's worth noting, due to previous release habits, that the subtitles correspond with the Japanese track, rather than the international dubbing.


 Extras:

Godzilla vs. Hedorah is another disappointing Godzilla release, from the extras perspective. This disc does contain the original, Japanese, teaser trailer for Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S., which is better than nothing. There are five other trailers included here on this disc, one of which is for the DVD released for the Godzilla the Series - Monster Wars and another for Steamboy (alas, just a redone US trailer). What's annoying, though, is that these trailers play automatically once you stick the disc into a player, forcing the user to skip past them in order to get to the main menu.

On a final note, the film's menus are, for a lack of better words, ugly. It's a real step down from the great menus created for Tristar's Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla.


 Overview:

Bottom line is that this is another solid release from Tristar, and one that should belong in any Godzilla fan's collection, unless they already forked over for the expensive region 2 release of the film.

This disc is also featured in the DVD box set: Godzilla DVD Collection (3 pack), Godzilla DVD Collection (5 pack)