Gamera vs Jiger was filmed on location of the Expo '70 event. As part of the agreement, Daiei Co. was not allowed to show the monsters destroy any of the Expo buildings.
At the Expo '70, a live stage show had both Gamera and Godzilla on stage together. The only footage and photos of the stage show shows Godzilla fighting Gyaos. This is the closest Toho Co. and Daiei Co. has ever gotten to collaborate and bring the two monsters together.
The movie originally started with a smaller budget due to the production company's financial issues. Director Yuasa had to convince the Daiei for a larger budget just to cover the costs for building the miniature sets.
After an ancient talisman on Wester Island was removed to be put on display for Expo '70, a ceratopsian monster called Jiger awakens and chases after the statue. Gamera is forced to intervene to stop Jiger's destructive pursuit of the statue.
Gamera returns in the sixth installment of the series facing off against a monster called Jiger. During this time, Daiei was having to cut the budget for each production due to the studio's financial issues. Noriaki Yuasa had to persuade the then-president of Daiei Co. Nagata Masakazu for a larger budget for the sets and special effects. However, my criticisms of this movie is the same song and dance as the previous movies, but I felt like I was watching more of a promotional ad for the expo more than a movie.
The characters are boring and annoying and once again focusing on another pair of boys. The story, however, doesn't involve so much mischief. Instead, they are helping their parents prepare for a convention called Expo '70. One family is preparing a new, top of the line submersible, while the other is on an island called Wester Island trying to retrieve a thousand year old statue that is said to be cursed. The representatives of Expo '70 were warned by a shaman from the island to not take the statue or it would release a monster called Jiger. Of course, the shaman's warning was ignored and they decide to take the statue anyways, but not without Gamera coming to intervene and prevent them from taking the statue. Jiger is released and begins chasing after the statue and Gamera has made attempts to stop the monster's rampage without success.
After the second fight, Gamera got stung by Jiger and falls over unconscious. The JSDF take x-ray scans of Gamera revealing that a parasite has been eating away Gamera's insides, which prompts the boys to go rescue Gamera themselves. The boys were able to go inside Gamera and found the parasite, which turns out to be a baby Jiger. The boys managed to kill it, yet it was by chance that they accidentally discovered Jiger's weakness which was low frequency radio waves. This also explains why the statue was able to keep Jiger hibernating for a thousand years. The boys explain to the JSDF what happened and the military tries to use Jiger's weakness to their advantage as well as try to revive Gamera from his coma. The plan fails and Jiger manages to reach the statue and flings it into the water, but Gamera is revived, he grabs the statue, and uses it to kill Jiger.
Overall, Gamera vs Jiger just seemed like it was a movie made specifically to promote the expo since the movie kept mentioning the convention and how important this convention was. We see Tokyo getting attacked, which seemed all fine and dandy. It could just be me, I think the miniature sets looked a lot better in this movie than they did in previous movies. There is a lot more detail put into the miniatures that actually looks like a specific area in Japan that is recognizable. So I feel this is a step up on their set design.
On the other hand, heaven forbid the expo gets attacked. This is mainly due to Daiei agreeing to the terms that the monsters must not attack a single building from the expo. I would rather have seen something from the expo get destroyed. We see Tokyo Tower get destroyed a lot in monster movies. Is it really a big deal if the monsters put a dent or break a glass window into one of the convention's buildings?
The monster fights are a little better than it was from Gamera vs Viras and Gamera vs Guiron when those didn't seem to know how to choreograph the fight scenes. Gamera vs Jiger seemed as though there was a bit more direction given, but some fight scenes still looked a little silly. I still prefer Gamera's animalistic nature as it still showed Gamera as an animal whereas none of that exists here. The only time I would say his wild side appeared was when he flew to Wester Island to prevent the expo from taking the statue. Gamera even let out his frustration on the humans after he failed to save the relic. It has been since Gamera: The Invincible when we have last seen Gamera attack people on his own.
As for Jiger, I like the idea of a monster based around a dinosaur like a Triceratops, but the frill (which can be hardly seen since it is blended in with its body) and its large horn are the only traits. There is nothing else that remotely tells me that this is supposed to be based on ceratopsian dinosaur. Even Anguirus from the Godzilla movies looked like an Ankylosaur and the traits of one stood out more than Jiger's ceratopsian traits. So the design is rather bland and very uninteresting to look at.
Gamera vs Jiger is not the worst movie, but it isn't great either as the problems from previous movies still persist in this one. The miniature sets look great, but the characters are uninteresting, the story is more like an ad for Expo '70 than an actual movie, and Jiger's design looks bland and any features are blended in with the monster's body.
What are your thoughts on Gamera vs Jiger? Is this one of your favorite movies or do you find this movie boring? Leave a comment in the comments section of your thoughts on this movie. Make sure to follow me on Facebook, Minds, MeWe, Gab, and TRUTH Social to stay up to date for more news, reviews, and discussions.