Ebirah—Horror of the Deep (1966)

ebirah horror from the deep poster 1966 movie
6.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 6/10
Visuals: 6/10

Different style of Godzilla story

Less Godzilla than many entries

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Ebirah—Horror of the Deep (Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster)

Studio:  Toho

Genre(s):  Action/Adventure/Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Release Date(s):  December 17, 1966

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated

ebirah horror from the deep kaiju lobster

Who you calling a shrimp?

Ryota (Toru Watanabe) has lost his brother (Toru Ibuki) at sea but learns from a mystic that he might still be alive.  With no one willing to help him search, Ryota steals a sailboat with his friends in tow, but Ryota finds a thief named Yoshimura (Akira Takarada) has already stolen the boat.  Travelling into uncharted waters, Ryota, his friends, and Yoshimura find themselves trapped on an island run by a terrorist organization called the Red Bamboo who have sinister plans for the world.  Protecting the Red Bamboo is a creature called Ebirah which patrols the waters for unsuspecting ship…now, the only hope of escape could be the monster known as Godzilla!

ebirah horror from the deep godzilla falls asleep

Nothing more compelling when your “star” falls asleep on a mountain…

Directed by Jun Fukuda, Ebirah—Horror of the Deep (ゴジラ・エビラ・モスラ 南海の大決闘 or Gojira, Ebira, Mosura Nankai no Daikettō aka Godzilla, Ebirah, Mothra:  Big Duel in the South Seas) was retitled Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster.  The film is the seventh film in the Godzilla series following Invasion of the Astro-Monster released in 1965.  The Criterion Collection released the film as part of the box set Godzilla: The Showa-Era Films, 1954-1975 (Criterion #1000).

Godzilla movies are a love them or hate them type of endeavor.  I grew up with them on Saturday mornings and love them…despite being bad, repetitive, and goofy looking.  Ebirah is a bit different than other Godzilla films in that it takes so long for Godzilla to even become a factor.

ebirah horror from the deep lobster kaiju godzilla play catch

No, Ebirah…you only get the point if you were the one serving!

Godzilla isn’t in a majority of the movie.  He is lying dormant under the island and awakened by the “heroes” of the film.  He then literally sits around for part of the movie watching (and falling asleep).  It is an odd way to treat the “star” of the film, but the film is of course joined by more monsters which include the title character (a giant shrimp/lobster thing) called Ebirah and fan favorite Mothra.  The story primarily comes down to an adventure with the humans.

The human characters of the movie are really one dimensional and they are pretty weak.  The characters all have really weird interaction and despite an event that could destroy the world, the characters don’t seem to take it as seriously as they should, but like everything else, that is expected in a Godzilla film.

ebirah horror from the deep godzilla lobster claw

Looks like I’m having lobster for dinner!!!

Godzilla’s effects are…Godzilla effects.  You get the guy in the big suit, snap zooms, fast cuts (so you can’t see characters), and lots of roaring.  We do get to see Godzilla fight underwater which is a little different.  The movie has four kaiju monsters with Godzilla, Ebirah, Mothra, and a giant bird.(just called Giant Condor).  I particularly like when Godzilla and Ebirah play volleyball/soccer with a rock for a while.

Ebirah—Horror from the Deep or Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster is classic Godzilla.  It might need a little more Godzilla, but it still is a Godzilla film.  It might actually have more plot than many Godzilla films, but you do not come for plot.  In its different approach, the movie feels not as standard Godzilla as some of the sequels, but fans expecting a Godzilla heavy movie might be disappointed.  Ebirah—Horror of the Deep was followed by Son of Godzilla in 1967.

Preceded By:

Invasion of the Astro-Monster (1965)

Followed By:

Son of Godzilla (1967)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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