Well, it was bound to happen. After all, it is Daiei Studios. The final Daimajin movie was focused almost entirely on a bunch of kids. I honestly don’t know what was more annoying. That they turned this into another Gamera style movie, or the fact that the titles got mixed around when they were released in the US. That is actually more annoying than the kids because having the titles mixed up makes it hard to talk about the correct movie. Anyways, enough griping. On with today’s movie, Daimajin Strikes Again.
The plot: As a series of freak weather events happen, including blizzards, flooding, lightening strikes, and drought, the local villagers believe that it is the work of the mountain god. Later, a local woodsman stumbles into the village and tells them that the rest of the woodsmen have all been captured by an evil warlord that is forcing them to work in some sulfur springs on the other side of the mountain. Four children decide to go and rescue their kidnap family members and head towards the mountain. At the base of the mountain, an old woman warns them to stay away because the mountain god’s avatar, a hawk, is always watching for trespassers. The kids continue on their quest and when they reach the top of the mountain, see the stone idol of the mountain god. The children ask the idol to forgive their trespassing over the mountain and continue in their quest. After several run ins with some evil samurais, losing one of their group during a river crossing, and a freak blizzard almost freezing them to death, one of the boys finally offers his life to Daimajin if he will spare the other two boy’s lives. Daimajin comes to life and rescues the three boys before heading towards the warlord’s labor camp. Daimajin spares the kidnapped villagers but destroys the camp and kills the warlord and all of his men. As the reunited children and villagers thank Daimajin, he disappears from view and returns back to his mountain home.
This was kind of interesting because it mirrored the Gamera series in that it focused on the kids and Daimajin seemed to develop a bond with the children. However, it also had a lot of the violence and deaths that were seen in the previous films, especially shown when Kinta was swept down river to die. I liked how the movie showcased more of Daimajin’s abilities in the beginning of the movie. The scenes involving Daimajin when he takes on the warlord were some of the best of the series. The scenes with the 4 boys and the three evil samurai were pretty funny, especially the fact that the youngest kid was pretty much the hero in both situations.
So a little dark to be a kid’s movie but a good movie none-the-less and worth watching.
Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5