The Regional Mothra Mismatch Problem

8 04 2015

Rebirth of Mothra (Toho Co. Ltd. - 1996)

Recently I moved my PS3 back into my bedroom from its home of many years; the front room. I decided to do this because it’s hard to play on it standing up, and I hardly go online with it anymore other than to download the many updates for the machine/games as well as to post my trophy winnings on Facebook. By moving it back upstairs however, I am more able to get into the games I play plus I am now more able to watch my small collection of Blu-ray discs (I still prefer DVD’s). Why am I talking about this, well, the other day I discovered a problem.

PS3 Logo

Back in about 2011 I managed to purchase a copy of the first two Heisei Gamera films on Blu-ray. I already had Gamera 3 on DVD, but had not seen the first 2. The opportunity to watch the first 2 was a big one, but also a very risky one. For a number of years now, I have collected Region 1 Godzilla films. Why region 1 in particular? Well that answer is rather simple: DVD Region Codes. Basically, there are very few Godzilla films released in the United Kingdom (and probably most of Europe), at all. Thanks to the BFI though, I have a copy of the 1954 film on DVD. King Kong vs Godzilla  meanwhile was released in about 2006 to coincide with the home media release of the 2005 King Kong. And of course the 1998 and 2014 films have been released also. But apart from those cases, no other Godzilla films have been released. It was once the case that channels like Channel 4 used to air them, and as such is where most of my fandom of growing up with Godzilla came from. But for some unknown reason, not a single classic nor recent Japanese Godzilla film has really been shown (other than KKvG, 1998 and 2014) on UK television for some time now. It really does surprise me that these films are not shown on channels like Film4 or even more bizarrely; SyFy.

Godzilla 2014 (Legendary Pictures - 2014)

When a Japanese Godzilla DVD/Blu-ray does get released, or re-released, The UK (and probably most of Europe) is seemingly ignored from the release, and no plans for a Region 2 release are announced. It is possible to purchase the Region 1 films through places like Amazon UK, but in order to watch them; I need to have access to a machine that can play Region 1 films. The first time I tried I discovered my PC could; so no problem there; but the problem is just escalating. With the approaching dawn of more and more Blu-ray’s being produced, eventually it will become the standard format; much like DVD’s did for VHS. So in order to counter this issue I will need to locate a device to play Region 1 Blu-ray discs. But then; with the likelihood of Internet streaming taking over, I will need to find a way of accessing them from there, but as is the case; many internet sites prevent some countries, from looking at things from other countries (as is the case sometimes with YouTube), so it will either be the case of finding one website that allows the opportunity of watching such films in the UK, or, (more likely) not watch them at all.

YouTube

The only way around this problem really, is to have a UK/European release of these films (which could bring the possibility of a box set, maybe, but not likely at this rate) from companies who have produced Region 1 releases of the films, from Toho themselves or from a UK/Europe based home media company. One other option, is that Japan has the same region code as the UK (and possibly most of Europe) so a UK release or imported copies might not be too much of a problem, however, I don’t know if they will come with  either English Subtitles or an English Dub (or, I suppose I could learn Japanese).

Toho Logo

I am trying really hard not to turn this into a rant.

Biollante

Anyway back to the Mothra problem; my PS3 does act as a multi-regional Blu-ray player, and so I was able to watch that Gamera Heisei box set, plus the recent Godzilla vs Biollante release, as well as region 2 Blu-ray coded films. The other day however, I discovered a problem. Back in October time I managed to get the Rebirth of Mothra Blu-ray set. Finally an opportunity to watch the Rebirth of Mothra films and get to see Desghidorah in movie form. The other day I loaded it into the PS3, and I got a message saying there was a mix-match/miss-match problem involving the region coding. I went back to the PS3 menu. It recognised the disc as the film, but just would not play it. I reloaded the disc, same thing again. I loaded the second disc, same problem. I then decided to load my Blu-ray copy (region A) of Godzilla vs Biollante just to make sure it wasn’t the machine. It loaded fine. I then tried the Gamera disc, fine too. What it meant was that despite being the same region as the two other discs, I am unable to watch my copies of Rebirth of Mothra (at least for the time being). I have no idea what to do, so for now I am just letting it gather dust in the hope that one day I may get to watch it (unless the problem I stated above persists, in which case I may never get to see it).

Aqua Mothra

For now, I don’t know what to do. My hope is that someday, someone may finally release Region 2 copies of the Godzilla, Gamera, and the Mothra films (some Ultraman might be nice too) for people in the UK and Europe to watch in a Region 2 format. Until then it remains a constant struggle of hoping something will work on a machine, and coping when it doesn’t.

Desghidorah

GENEPOOL (This is pretty much the same reason why I am not all that much looking forward to the new Japanese Godzilla film in 2016, as I highly doubt it’s going to get released in the UK, either on DVD/Blu-ray, or in cinemas).

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Godzilla News – Unveiling, Release and Giant Plants

24 10 2012

It has been almost a year since we heard any Major News regarding the Legendary Pictures Godzilla Film. Well recently there has been a lot major News and I have finally got round to writing it up. Firstly at this past years San Diego Comic-Con International during a session by Legendary Pictures a trailer for the film was unveiled. The trailer (which once again is not available on YouTube) apparently depicts Godzilla as the original TOHO Monster and in no way as the 1998 Zilla.

“The teaser trailer included a depiction of Godzilla faithful to the Toho monster, including its roar, and a “gigantic centipede-like monster.”” – Wikipedia

“A city decimated. Completely destroyed. The camera pans by the wreckage of a train, A distant voice is heard reading from the Book of Revelations. The voice sounds very familiar. Dust everywhere. Cars crushed. Holes in skyscrapers. It becomes obvious that the voice belongs to Raymond Burr from the original. We then see a giant centipede-like creature with many arms and legs smoldering. (You know what that means? Monster battles!) The city appears dead as a doornail. Then blackness. THE ROAR. As in THE roar. Huge bass drop. Raymond Burr finishes his famous speech. Dust…then an arm… a hand… with claws. Pan up… the fins. The head. Godzilla. As we know him. The real Godzilla. He roars again”. – Dread Central (Edited for Swear Words).

So the Good news is that it is THE JAPANESE GODZILLA. As I said before I am unable to get hold of the trailer, but here is something that is not far off, possibly even better.

So we have confirmation that it is coming but when. Well, a couple of months later a release date had been announced for the films release. The planned release date is MAY 16th 2014 (there is also the possibility that the film will be in 3D, however if a 2D version comes out too I strongly suggest that you go and see it in that format). Now 2014 is already going to be a big year for cinema with some major films being released that year. However there are 3 other reasons why it is an important year for cinema, Firstly it is the 60th anniversary of Akira Kurosawa‘s Masterpiece – Seven Samurai, Secondly it is the 60th anniversary of the original 1954 Japanese Godzilla Film, Thirdly it is the end of the 10 year hiatus Godzilla has been on since 2004, so within that there is the possibility of 2 Godzilla Films in 2014. So what a way to celebrate the 60th anniversary, 2 Godzilla Films (potentially).

Finally, this not related to the 2014 film but is Godzilla Related as well as BIG NEWS. For many years two Godzilla Films have been involved in a piece of DVD Controversy. Godzilla 1985 (one of my favourite films) and Godzilla vs Biollante (one of three Godzilla films I have not seen, and by far out of those 3 the one I want to see the most) have been available in many countries as well as on Video. However the DVD release has not been satisfactory with people in both America and The UK complaining about this. Well it looks like someone has taken notice and cares. Godzilla vs Biollante is getting released on DVD and Blu-ray on December 4th by Echo Bridge.  Hopefully it won’t be too long until Godzilla 1985 gets the same treatment. Really looking forward to that being released.

With the release of Godzilla vs Biollante onto DVD and Blu-ray soon as well as more news on the Legendary Pictures Godzilla Film, It is an exciting time to be a Godzilla Fan.

GENEPOOL (Someone on TV recently said that James Bond is the longest running Film Series in Cinema History. WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG, They were WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG).








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