Return of Daimajin (1966)

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Credits for Return of Daimajin


Daimajin trilogy
Daimajin
Return of Daimajin
Daimajin Strikes Again
Return of Daimajin
The Japanese poster for Return of Daimajin
Alternate titles
Flagicon Japan.png Angry Daimajin (1966)
Flagicon United States.png Return of Giant Majin (TV 1967)
See alternate titles
Directed by Kenji Misumi
Producer(s) Masaichi Nagata
Written by Tetsuro Yoshida
Music by Akira Ifukube
Distributor DaieiJP, AITVUS[1]
Rating Not Rated
Budget ¥100,000,000[citation needed]
Running time 79 minutesJP
(1 hour, 19 minutes)
78 minutesUS
(1 hour, 18 minutes)
Aspect ratio 2.35:1
Rate this film!
4.00
(7 votes)

Is his rage directed at evil!? Or, at a maiden's tears!? A lake's raging waters are split in two! The miraculous Daimajin appears again! (悪への怒りか!乙女の涙か!逆巻く湖水をまっ二つ!驚異の大魔神ふたたび現わる!)
„ 

— Japanese tagline

An evil and powerful war-lord defies the Sea God Majin... The trial of strength ensues... Terrifying death awaits the defeated!
„ 

— American tagline

Return of Daimajin (大魔神怒る,   Daimajin Ikaru, lit. Angry Daimajin) is a 1966 tokusatsu kaiju film produced by Daiei Motion Picture Company. It is the second film in the Daimajin trilogy, released to Japanese theaters on August 13, 1966.

Plot[edit | edit source]

Tired of struggling in their land, separated by mountains from natural resources, the wicked Mikoshiba clan plots to overthrow the Chigusa and Nagoshi clans, whose allied kingdoms surrounded Lake Yakimono, on which there was an island which housed a statue of a mysterious god. Legends claimed that if the statue's face turned red, it was a sign that the kingdom would fall. Shortly after a funeral service for a fallen clansman, escaped Mikoshiba serfs arrived with bales of rice as an offering in return for being taken under Lord Juro Chigusa's protection. However, the serfs were in fact spies, with their bales acting as decoys with Mikoshiba warriors hiding inside.

The Mikoshiba soldiers overthrow Chigusa, with Lord Juro only barely escaping through a secret passage. However, with the castle under his control, Lord Danjo Mikoshiba took his army to Nagoshi to search for him. Lord Nagoshi was uncooperative, and was killed. Mikoshiba then takes his son Katsushige Nagoshi hostage, threatening to kill him if they do not surrender Juro. After covering her father's grave, Lady Sayuri Nagoshi travels to the island to pray to the god to save the kingdom. However, shortly after she arrives, the Nagoshi army comes and begins to destroy the god's idol. She bursts out in anger, and is taken prisoner. However, as the statue explodes, Sayuri runs toward it, and is entombed in stone. The statue's head sinks in tact into the bay. The Mikoshiba soldiers leave her for dead, and she is dug out unharmed by an aide. She decides to stay on the island, believing that the god's spirit was lingering, and that he had saved them from the explosion. However, at that moment, a skiff with the unconscious Lord Juro aboard washed into the bay. After recovering, he and his aide sailed off to capture Lord Mikoshiba and to trade him for Katsushige. However, they are discovered by Mikoshiba's soldiers, and are nearly attacked when they run aground on some rocks, but the enemy skiff finds itself immobile, and is pulled down into the water.

Eventually they are all captured, and Sayuri is burned alive as an example. However, before she dies, she prays to the god, offering her life in exchange for his protection and restoration of the Chigusa and Nagoshi peoples. As tears fall down her face, winds pick up and blow out the fires, and the full body of the god's image rises from the bay of his island. He causes landslides, and sinks the island before parting the waters of the lake and beginning his walk to the shore. When he arrives, the Mikoshiba enter a panic. The god breaks Sayuri's stake off, and gently lays her on the ground before advancing on the castle in pursuit of Lord Mikoshiba. Despite their attempts to barricade him out, the god continued without breaking pace. They then attempt to slow him down with enormous grappling hooks, which do not hinder the god. They then attempt to blow him up and bury him beneath fallen stones from a wall, but once more, the god continues his advance, and hurls a boulder at Mikoshiba's lieutenant, crushing him beneath it. Mikoshiba then attempts to flee into the lake by boat, and nearly outruns the god, who forces the boat to spin around and face him before launching a ball of fire across the water, igniting his boat. Lord Mikoshiba climbs up the mast in an attempt to escape the fire, but becomes entangled in the rigging, leaving him in an almost identical situation to Sayuri's on her cross-shaped pyre. As the burning ship falls into the sea, the storm the god had brought cleared up. Sayuri then runs into the lake and says a prayer of thanks as the god turns to face her. her tears of gratitude hit the lake's surface, and the god turns back into stone before its body turns into water and it falls into the lake. The island's sunken bell then rang out from the bottom of the lake as a sign that the kingdoms would forever have peace.

Staff[edit | edit source]

Staff role on the left, staff member's name on the right.

Cast[edit | edit source]

Actor's name on the left, character played on the right.

  • Kojiro Hongo   as   Lord Juro Chigusa
  • Shiho Fujimura   as   Lady Sayuri Nagoshi
  • Taro Marui   as   Dodohei
  • Jutaro Hojo   as   Genba Onikojima
  • Koichi Uenoyama   as   Katsushige Nagoshi
  • Asao Uchida   as   Lord Heibei Nagoshi
  • Chikara Hashimoto   as   Shunpei Ikenaga / Daimajin
  • Takashi Kanda   as   Lord Danjo Mikoshiba
  • Sei Hiraizumi   as   Hayato Tabe
  • Koji Fujiyama   as   Ikkaku Arai
  • Koichi Mizuhara   as   Kamon Doi
  • Gen Takasugi   as   Saburota Ato
  • Hyosuke Kanbe   as   Mohachi
  • Yusaku Terajima   as   Kanetsuki-wasuke
  • Kimiko Tachibana   as   Kume
  • Yuji Hamada   as   Farmer #2
  • Hideo Kuroki   as   Tasuke
  • Kohbu Matsuda   as   Farmer #1
  • Yoshitaka Ito   as   Farmer #3
  • Tadashi Iwata
  • Yutaro Ban
  • Kiyokazu Kagatsume   as   Ryuta
  • Kayo Mikimoto   as   Toyo
  • Keiko Koyanagi   as   Shige

International English dub[edit | edit source]

Actor's name on the left, character played on the right.

  • Warren Rooke   as   Lord Juro Chigusa
  • Ted Thomas   as   Genba Onikojima[2]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Monsters[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Main article: Return of Daimajin/Gallery.

Soundtrack[edit | edit source]

Main article: Return of Daimajin (Soundtrack).

Alternate titles[edit | edit source]

  • Return of Majin (international title)
  • Return of Giant Majin (United States)
  • Wrath of Daimajin (initial United States video title)

U.S. release[edit | edit source]

In 1970, American International Television licensed Return of Daimajin for its "Fantastic Science Fiction Theater" syndication package as Return of Giant Majin.[1] It was dubbed into English in New York City by Titan Productions. A.D. Vision's 1998 VHS and 2002 DVD releases swapped the titles of Return of Daimajin and Daimajin Strikes Again (which they called Wrath of Daimajin). This was corrected in their 2005 reissues of the DVDs. It has since been released on Blu-ray by Mill Creek alongside the rest of the trilogy. Arrow Video released its own Blu-ray set of the trilogy on July 26, 2021.

The script for Return of Giant Majin may have been based on Daiei's export dub of the film, recorded in Hong Kong. The existence of this first English dub was not known until 2021, when Kadokawa announced plans to screen it at Kadokawa Cinema Yurakucho as part of the Yokai Tokusatsu Film Festival.[3] Their video promoting this event includes a single line by Lord Danjo Mikoshiba, spoken by the same unidentified voice actor who dubbed Gengo Odaka in Godzilla vs. Gigan, among others.[4] Kadokawa included the full dub in its Daimajin Sealed Box Blu-ray set released on September 24, 2021.

Video releases[edit | edit source]

A.D. Vision DVD (2002) [The Complete Daimajin Trilogy]

  • Region: 1
  • Discs: 3
  • Audio: Japanese (2.0 Mono)
  • Special features: Trailers
  • Notes: Out of print. Packaged with Daimajin and Daimajin Strikes Again. Reissued as a single disc in 2005.

Mill Creek Blu-ray (2012) [Daimajin Triple Feature]

  • Region: N/A
  • Discs: 2
  • Audio: Japanese (DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0), English (DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0, Titan Productions dub)
  • Special features: Trailers for all three Daimajin films, interviews with cinematographer Fujio Morita on the making of each film (28, 31, and 28 minutes).
  • Notes: Out of print. Packaged with Daimajin and Daimajin Strikes Again.

Arrow Video Blu-ray (2021) [The Daimajin Trilogy][5]

  • Region: A or B
  • Discs: 3
  • Audio: Japanese (Mono) and English (Mono, Titan Productions dub)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Special features: 100-page book with essays by Jonathan Clements, Keith Aiken, Ed Godziszewski, Raffael Coronelli, Erik Homenick, Robin Gatto, and Kevin Derendorf; audio commentaries by Stuart Galbraith IV (Daimajin), Tom Mes and Jasper Sharp (Return of Daimajin), and Jonathan Clements (Daimajin Strikes Again); Daimajin introduction by Kim Newman; "Bringing the Avenging God to Life" video essay about the trilogy's special effects by Ed Godziszewski; AITV opening credits for Majin, the Monster of Terror and Return of Giant Majin; "My Summer Holidays with Daimajin" interview with Professor Yoneo Ota about the trilogy's production; "From Storyboard to Screen: Bringing Return of Daimajin to Life" comparison of storyboards and scenes from the finished film; interview with cinematographer Fujio Mori; Japanese and U.S. trailers for all three films (with the exception of a U.S. trailer for Daimajin Strikes Again); image galleries; postcards

Kadokawa Blu-ray + DVD (2021)[6] [Daimajin Sealed Box]

  • Region: A
  • Discs: 7
  • Audio: Japanese (2.0), English (2.0, export dub)
  • Subtitles: Unknown
  • Special features: Reproduction of the Return of Daimajin shooting script; interviews with cinematographer Fujio Mori, Daimajin suit actor Chikara Hashimoto, composer Akira Ifukube, special effects director Yoshiyuki Kuroda, cinematographer Fujio Morita, and director Tomoo Haraguchi; storyboard reproductions; still gallery; theatrical trailers
  • Notes: Uses a new 4K transfer. Packaged with Daimajin and Daimajin Strikes Again.

Videos[edit | edit source]

Japanese Return of Daimajin teaser and theatrical trailer and Zatoichi's Pilgrimage theatrical trailer
Mill Creek Daimajin Triple Feature Blu-ray trailer
U.S. Return of Giant Majin TV trailer
Complete Titan Productions English dub
Arrow Video The Daimajin Trilogy Blu-ray teaser trailer

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • This film is the only instance in the trilogy where Daimajin is first found in an area which is not mountainous in terrain.

References[edit | edit source]

This is a list of references for Return of Daimajin. These citations are used to identify the reliable sources on which this article is based. These references appear inside articles in the form of superscript numbers, which look like this: [1]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Craig, Rob (2019). American International Pictures: A Comprehensive Filmography. McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. p. 305. ISBN 9781476666310.
  2. You must specify title = and url = when using {{cite web}}.邦画クラシックス@角川シネマコレクション (22 July 2021). . Twitter.
  3. KADOKAWA映画 (10 June 2021). 7/16(金)公開『妖怪・特撮映画祭』予告篇. YouTube.
  4. That VHS Guy (1 February 2015). Unidentified Hong Kong Voice Actor 1. YouTube.
  5. The Daimajin Trilogy Blu-ray. Arrow Films (30 April 2021).
  6. 「大魔神封印函」4K修復版 Blu-ray BOX 【完全初回生産限定】. Amazon.co.jp. Retrieved on 10 June 2021.

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