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Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:29 am
by Pkmatrix
As a kid in the '90s, I got ahold of two copies of Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla.

One was either the 1988 New World release or 1992 Starmaker release of the International version, the other was the somewhat later Goodtimes release of Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. The main difference I remember between the two was that Cosmic Monster was missing the opening with Anguirus in Siberia, although I think there were other things missing from Cosmic Monster too.

My question: is Cosmic Monster the US theatrical cut of GvMG'74? I don't have a VCR at the moment so I can't check (yes, I still have this VHS), but does anyone remember if the Cosmic Monster cut uses the International dub or does it use another one? Was there any difference between "Cosmic Monster" and "Bionic Monster", aside from the title?

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 11:52 am
by Stump Feet
I swear on one of the releaeses, MechaGodzilla’s metal shavings blowing out to sea at the end was cut.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 12:24 pm
by Terasawa
Pkmatrix wrote:As a kid in the '90s, I got ahold of two copies of Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla.

One was either the 1988 New World release or 1992 Starmaker release of the International version, the other was the somewhat later Goodtimes release of Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. The main difference I remember between the two was that Cosmic Monster was missing the opening with Anguirus in Siberia, although I think there were other things missing from Cosmic Monster too.

My question: is Cosmic Monster the US theatrical cut of GvMG'74? I don't have a VCR at the moment so I can't check (yes, I still have this VHS), but does anyone remember if the Cosmic Monster cut uses the International dub or does it use another one? Was there any difference between "Cosmic Monster" and "Bionic Monster", aside from the title?


It was first released as Godzilla vs. the Bionic Monster but that was pulled after a few months because of a lawsuit from Universal. Cinema Shares and Downtown Distribution would then re-release it a little while later as "Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster." As far as I can tell, the former has never been issued on video anywhere so without having seen it (the only way would be from an increasingly rare 35mm print) it's hard to tell if Cinema Shares made any further changes when re-titling the film. (I suspect they probably didn't.) Both versions definitely used Toho's international dub though. Supposedly "Bionic Monster's" title was more elaborate and similar to the Toho international version, but when they had to pull the film and edit a new title in for release, they kind of cheaped out and inserted this:

Image

16mm prints shown on TV had the artwork cropped out.

GvCM has a lot of trimmed footage ala the release of Megalon from the same company. It runs about 80 minutes while the Japanese version runs 84. The biggest chunk of deleted footage is the opening credits. Most of the remaining cuts involve violence and bloodshed in the battles with the aliens; the monster footage is uncensored. The epilogue is also cut so after King Seeser's resting place is resealed the film jumps to the end title.

The version you had, the GoodTimes tape, is interesting because it's further edited for some reason. The movie's really cut to ribbons on the tape but it is still based on the already edited Cinema Shares version. I think that's the only video release that is so heavily edited.

In 1994, the Sci-Fi Channel introduced three Godzilla movies into its movie rotation: Godzilla vs. Megalon (the edited Cinema Shares version we all grew up with), Godzilla on Monster Island (the edited Cinema Shares version of "Gigan"), and Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. The latter was the international version of the film, identical to the transfer we first saw in 1988 from New World, except it had a new "Cosmic Monster" title card created to resemble the international one.

Image

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 12:29 pm
by Stump Feet
Ah, so Mechagodzilla blowing out to sea WAS cut, I thought so.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 12:34 pm
by Terasawa
Stump Feet wrote:Ah, so Mechagodzilla blowing out to sea WAS cut, I thought so.


It was still there, unless your local station cut it to fit in some more commercials. That shot occurs before the Seeser shot.


Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 12:34 pm
by Pkmatrix
Terasawa wrote:It was first released as Godzilla vs. the Bionic Monster but that was pulled after a few months because of a lawsuit from Universal. Cinema Shares and Downtown Distribution would then re-release it a little while later as "Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster." As far as I can tell, the former has never been issued on video anywhere so without having seen it (the only way would be from an increasingly rare 35mm print) it's hard to tell if Cinema Shares made any further changes when re-titling the film. (I suspect they probably didn't.) Both versions definitely used Toho's international dub though. Supposedly "Bionic Monster's" title was more elaborate and similar to the Toho international version, but when they had to pull the film and edit a new title in for release, they kind of cheaped out and inserted this:

16mm prints shown on TV had the artwork cropped out.

GvCM has a lot of trimmed footage ala the release of Megalon from the same company. It runs about 80 minutes while the Japanese version runs 84. The biggest chunk of deleted footage is the opening credits. Most of the remaining cuts involve violence and bloodshed in the battles with the aliens; the monster footage is uncensored. The epilogue is also cut so after King Seeser's resting place is resealed the film jumps to the end title.

The version you had, the GoodTimes tape, is interesting because it's further edited for some reason. The movie's really cut to ribbons on the tape but it is still based on the already edited Cinema Shares version. I think that's the only video release that is so heavily edited.

In 1994, the Sci-Fi Channel introduced three Godzilla movies into its movie rotation: Godzilla vs. Megalon (the edited Cinema Shares version we all grew up with), Godzilla on Monster Island (the edited Cinema Shares version of "Gigan"), and Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. The latter was the international version of the film, identical to the transfer we first saw in 1988 from New World, except it had a new "Cosmic Monster" title card created to resemble the international one.


Ah, okay! Thanks, that's really neat - I'm fascinated by this sort of thing. :)

I was asking because with all of the fan reconstructions being done in the last few years, I don't think I've seen anyone discuss doing one for Bionic Monster/Cosmic Monster. I was aware that it was titled "Bionic Monster" and changed to "Cosmic Monster" at some point, but I had no idea the Goodtimes release was a different cut than the original US Theatrical cut release.

So, in the interest of preservation, there probably needs to be at least two made: one reconstructing the original Godzilla vs. the Bionic Monster US theatrical cut, and one reconstructing the Goodtimes VHS cut of Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. (And I suppose one extra for the theatrical Cosmic Monster, though it sounds like the only change would be an alternate title card?) The distributor having used the International dub for this should, in theory, make this somewhat easier to do than a lot of other reconstructions if anybody is interested, since we're getting a nice High Definition release of it on the Criterion set. :)

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 12:36 pm
by Stump Feet
Huh, that must have been it or something because I don’t recall seeing that scene until I saw Terror at the drive-ins.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:19 am
by o.supreme
Something I never noticed, but on at least two of the VHS releases, on the box, they omit the article *The* and just call it Godzilla vs Cosmic Monster. It sounds hilarious in a Russian accent. ;)

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:40 am
by mikelcho
Pkmatrix wrote:As a kid in the '90s, I got ahold of two copies of Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla.

One was either the 1988 New World release or 1992 Starmaker release of the International version, the other was the somewhat later Goodtimes release of Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. The main difference I remember between the two was that Cosmic Monster was missing the opening with Anguirus in Siberia, although I think there were other things missing from Cosmic Monster too.

My question: is Cosmic Monster the US theatrical cut of GvMG'74? I don't have a VCR at the moment so I can't check (yes, I still have this VHS), but does anyone remember if the Cosmic Monster cut uses the International dub or does it use another one? Was there any difference between "Cosmic Monster" and "Bionic Monster", aside from the title?
So Godzilla and Anguirus were in Siberia at the beginning of this film? I always thought that they were on Monster Island. Probably Monster Island was where Godzilla went when he allowed himself to be struck by lightning during the electrical storm.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:44 am
by Pkmatrix
mikelcho wrote:
Pkmatrix wrote:As a kid in the '90s, I got ahold of two copies of Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla.

One was either the 1988 New World release or 1992 Starmaker release of the International version, the other was the somewhat later Goodtimes release of Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. The main difference I remember between the two was that Cosmic Monster was missing the opening with Anguirus in Siberia, although I think there were other things missing from Cosmic Monster too.

My question: is Cosmic Monster the US theatrical cut of GvMG'74? I don't have a VCR at the moment so I can't check (yes, I still have this VHS), but does anyone remember if the Cosmic Monster cut uses the International dub or does it use another one? Was there any difference between "Cosmic Monster" and "Bionic Monster", aside from the title?
So Godzilla and Anguirus were in Siberia at the beginning of this film? I always thought that they were on Monster Island. Probably Monster Island was where Godzilla went when he allowed himself to be struck by lightning during the electrical storm.


I...you know what, it's been so long I don't remember where I heard that was Siberia? Considering it's snowing during the scene, I don't think I could be Monster Island...

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 12:44 pm
by o.supreme
Question: Does it snow in Okinawa? I just figured tracking down MG would not keep him far away.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 12:49 pm
by Pkmatrix
o.supreme wrote:Question: Does it snow in Okinawa? I just figured tracking down MG would not keep him far away.


Okinawa is around the same latitude as Miami, Florida so...probably not? :lol:

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:29 pm
by Terasawa
When he was a guest at G-Fest around 15 years ago, I think Teruyoshi Nakano said the opening scene was supposed to occur somewhere in Siberia but I can't find any confirmation of that online.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:37 pm
by Pkmatrix
Terasawa wrote:When he was a guest at G-Fest around 15 years ago, I think Teruyoshi Nakano said the opening scene was supposed to occur somewhere in Siberia but I can't find any confirmation of that online.


Hm...if that's the case, maybe I read about it in an issue of G-Fan. I remember they ran a big interview with Nakano in an issue at least once...

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:07 am
by Great Hierophant
Pkmatrix wrote:
Ah, okay! Thanks, that's really neat - I'm fascinated by this sort of thing. :)

I was asking because with all of the fan reconstructions being done in the last few years, I don't think I've seen anyone discuss doing one for Bionic Monster/Cosmic Monster. I was aware that it was titled "Bionic Monster" and changed to "Cosmic Monster" at some point, but I had no idea the Goodtimes release was a different cut than the original US Theatrical cut release.

So, in the interest of preservation, there probably needs to be at least two made: one reconstructing the original Godzilla vs. the Bionic Monster US theatrical cut, and one reconstructing the Goodtimes VHS cut of Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. (And I suppose one extra for the theatrical Cosmic Monster, though it sounds like the only change would be an alternate title card?) The distributor having used the International dub for this should, in theory, make this somewhat easier to do than a lot of other reconstructions if anybody is interested, since we're getting a nice High Definition release of it on the Criterion set. :)


There is an existing reconstruction of the theatrical Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. The trouble with reconstructing Godzilla vs. the Bionic Monster is that I do not believe there is any footage available showing what the Bionic Monster title looked like.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:41 am
by Pkmatrix
Great Hierophant wrote:There is an existing reconstruction of the theatrical Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster. The trouble with reconstructing Godzilla vs. the Bionic Monster is that I do not believe there is any footage available showing what the Bionic Monster title looked like.


Oh, is there? I hadn't seen it yet. :)

While that's true, there's still the commercials with the Bionic Monster logo and at least some people who saw it in theaters before it was pulled, right? It may be possible to cobble something together between those, shouldn't there? It may not be a 100% accurate reconstruction, but it'd be something.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 8:26 am
by Terasawa
Pkmatrix wrote:While that's true, there's still the commercials with the Bionic Monster logo and at least some people who saw it in theaters before it was pulled, right? It may be possible to cobble something together between those, shouldn't there? It may not be a 100% accurate reconstruction, but it'd be something.


What I've heard from people who've seen "Bionic Monster" was that the title design and title sequence were similar to the export version, complete with the flashing "GODZILLA" text. The logo used in trailers and print media is pretty different from that.

Re: Godzilla vs. the Cosmic Monster?

Posted: Fri Sep 13, 2019 2:22 pm
by G2000
Pkmatrix wrote:
o.supreme wrote:Question: Does it snow in Okinawa? I just figured tracking down MG would not keep him far away.


Okinawa is around the same latitude as Miami, Florida so...probably not? :lol:


Fun fact, Okinawa had it’s first recorded snowfall in January 2016