Classic Toho tokusatsu on Amazon Prime

Exciting news for those of us that missed out on the VHS releases, several classic Toho science fiction movies from director Ishiro Honda have been made available for free on Amazon Prime Instant Video. These are American edits (and certainly dubs) of the films offered from the MGM library, so warning: the prints are in pretty terrible shape, but about what you’d be able to master from one of the old VHS copies.

Titles include Gorath, the 1962 disaster movie about a killer asteroid heading towards the Earth. Since this is the US version of the movie that’s offered on Amazon, the final sequence involving the giant walrus monster Magma has been completely excised.


1960’s The Human Vapor, about exactly what it sounds like, is also available. It’s the third part of Honda’s “mutant trilogy”, of which only The H Man is available on DVD here.


Finally, a title that’s also being offered in a print-on-demand program, is Varan the Unbelievable. To avoid confusion, let me quickly clarify that this is the 1962 American version of the 1958 giant monster movie movie, which has scenes of American actor Myron Healey added in (albeit without as much tact as the US additions to Godzilla, King of the Monsters or Half Human). The US cut was not included in Tokyo Shock’s DVD of the Japanese version of the movie, so rabid completionists may be interested in picking it up.

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