After the shocking amount of screen time Gamera got in the last movie, I feel the production team and writers doubled down on this one. Several volcanic eruptions release a new adversary for Gamera, a giant bat kaiju named Gyaos who terrorizes a small village that brings another kid into the equation as military and scientific minds collaborate once more. I feel this is a movie that took elements of both the first and second movie, and mixed them pretty well. As I said there is a huge amount of kaiju action in this, even when the monsters aren't on screen the scene still has something to do about them. Learning more about Gyaos, seeing the effects of experiments on his flesh, Gamera coming into his hero light and befriending a young boy, it's a perfectly balanced kaiju movie for me where you get lots of monster scenes and the human story enters unfamiliar waters for one of these movies and still holds some interest. The movie I think is setting the bar for the rest of the series, cause the previous two while still having humorous and off beat moments were still fairly serious and "realistic". This one takes a much lighter, silly, ludicrous, and kid orientated stance and it flat out does not care that it's absurd. Take Gyaos for example, a giant bat kaiju that lives on blood, has a weakness to sunlight, shoots weird green mist out of I can only assume it's breasts, shoots a ultrasonic ray that honestly looks and acts more like a lazer, and can regrow body parts. Only in Gamera movies will you get something this weird. The kid is a touch more annoying in this one, and still retains the scene where they just barge into a military operation without reason, prelude, or connection and has a bonding session ride with Gamera visiting an amusement park. What? It was the 60s, a strange monster could take your child alone to a fair without anyone even batting an eyelid. I trust the several storey tall, flying, fire breathing monster that destroyed the city and claimed countless lives in the last two movies oh wait-
Well...I trust him more than that reporter guy, that was some stranger danger shit man. I think it's obviously clear this was a movie intended for kids, which is interesting cause by Barugon in 1966 the Godzilla series wasn't at the lighthearted for kids romps though Godzilla was a hero by this point. And by Gyaos we were up to Son Of Godzilla which sort of was taking baby steps (Laugh!) into that department. So could it be Toho was taking inspiration from these movies for their future Godzilla projects? Possible. But I can appreciate both and can much more fullheartedly recommend this movie to kaiju fans. I like the human story but not as much as Barugon, the effects are still in good shape, the monster stuff has my full attention, it's a very solid entry. I give it 3 stars, another 7.5/10 but for completely different reasons than Barugon, and I kinda feel this is the high water mark for the Gamera series. I've seen the reviews (go watch Brandon Tenold's Gamera-athon), and I know it is not too pretty from here. Into jaws of death we go!