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31 (Japanese) Monsters #24: Maguma

October 24th, 2010 No comments

When all you have is a man in a rubber suit, every problem looks like a building waiting to be crushed.

That was the situation faced by the makers of Toho’s 1962 sci-fi epic Gorath. They had a perfectly serviceable variant of When Worlds Collide about a rogue star poised to smash the Earth. They had spaceships and tidal waves, not to mention a lunatic scheme to shove the entire planet out of harm’s way by installing enormous rockets at the South Pole. But was that enough to put butts in the seats?

No, it was clear what this movie needed: a giant walrus. A giant walrus named…

Maguma!


Monster Island Nickname Wallace
Hails From Antarctica
Movies Appeared In
(not counting stock footage)
1
Hobbies Playing “Don’t Break the Ice”
Quote “Bwa-aaaaah! Bwa-aaaaaah!”

And that is why, 67 minutes into an 88-minute movie, the heat from the rocket engines released a prehistoric walrus from the Antarctic ice. Because the utter annihilation of the human race needed a kicker. At least a huge marine mammal buried at the South Pole makes a bit more sense than certain mountain-dwelling octopi I could name.

With only twenty more minutes to save the world, Maguma really didn’t have much of a chance to spread his flippers. In the original Japanese release, he was butchered from the air by a laser-equipped aircraft. In the American edit, he was removed from the film entirely.