Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Horrors of October - Terror Beneath The Sea

Terror Beneath The Sea (1966)

Two scuba-diving reporters are captured by an egomaniacal underwater overlord, who wishes to create a new world order by creating an army of mutated fish-men who are also somehow cyborgs. A plot description like that easily tells you that TERROR BENEATH THE SEA is sure to be one kooky Japanese B movie. Alas, it takes a while to get going, as you have to sit through a lot of swimming sequences and watching the heresy that is a wimpy Sonny Chiba. You also have to bare with the poor production values on both sides of the Pacific: The English distribution company severely fudges up the opening credits, with titles placed upon other titles or disappearing all together, but have to make chicken salad out of the jarring scene transitions and poorly thought-out scenes crafted by director Hajime Sato. But like many a Godzilla film, the real substance and cheesy schlock come out in full force during the last third, where you get to bare witness to rubber-suited fish-men firing off silenced pistols at people or the rare unscientific sight of snow falling and rockets firing under the sea. And the glorious amount of close-ups and pulled faces, particularly at one climatic point where a naval commander bugs out his eyes and barks, "And I'M GOING IN!" I would bump up the grade since I'm a huge fan of weird Japanese flicks but I need to give it a fair judgment. It possesses a lot of dumb fun but most will find it too tedious, even at 79 minutes.


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