The X from Outer Space ★★★

So far, this movie has already justified my purchase of the Eclipse "When Horror Came to Shochiku" box set.

My knowledge of Japanese cinema is pretty much limited to films containing Samurai and films containing daikaiju, with the occasional martial arts flick added in for flavor. I was excited to experience this genre experiment from a studio apparently more known for its melodrama. The final product is a neat bit of retro scifi monster madness, featuring and elevator music score as dated as some of the film's gender politics. The female characters in this movie do suffer from Sue Storm Syndrome in the first act of this film. The lady scientists can come along, but they have to do the cooking.

The premise of this movie is similar to that of a dozen or so sci fi horror thrillers. A team of scientists return to Earth from Mars, and unknowingly spread a contaminant that threatens life on earth. It's an old song, but if they were still using that melody in 2017 for Holywood productions like Life, it is more than forgivable in a film from 1968.

The movie features several eccentric elements, some of which might be a result of cculture and time, and some that are just baffling.

The first hour or so of the feature is rather goofy in places. Then the big reveal of what the monster in this monster movie is happens, and it turns out I've been watching a kaiju film the whole time!

Extra half star for the scene in which two scientists bathing together remark on how convenient it is that the moon is well stocked with artificial water.