Toho are releasing their Godzilla movies on Blu-Ray. At the moment they’re releasing them five at a time, in no perticular order, every couple of months. You can see current and upcoming selections here:
If you live in North America or Europe (like me!) you can get hold of these movies from cdjapan:
or Play Asia:
I’ve not used cdjapan before, but I’m sure they ship at least stateside. Play Asia have shipped DVDs to me before, and I’m in the UK. Hurrah!
Bare in mind that Japanese Blu-Rays are Region-A. This means they will work fine in the USA (which is also Region-A), but the UK is Region-B.
However, there is some conflicting information on the internet as to whether these Blu-Rays are Region encoded. The safe bet is assume that they are, which means you’ll need a Region A Blu-Ray player to view them. Sorry Brits & Euros!
Ironically, Japanese DVDs are Region-2, just like the UK & Europe! So if you still want to get decent quality Kaiju movies, and the extras on the discs (which are ususally pretty cool) you can still buy the Toho DVDs from these same websites, it’s not all bad!
Here are the Blu-Ray Regions around the world:
The Blu-Rays themselves have been re-mastered at 1080p, and feature a lot of the extras from the original Japanese DVD releases. However, some contain new material, such as Godzilla vs King Ghidorah which will feature a location journal in HD.
So there you have it! If you live in North America (or any Region-A country) your current Blu-Ray player (and PS3) will play these Japanese Blu-Rays just fine. If you’re in a Region-B country, you’ll have to import a Region-A Blu-Ray player (or buy a North American PS3 like I did). Don’t forget if you do this you’ll also need to buy a step-down converter so you don’t blow yourself up. Here’s the one I bought.
Finally here’s a comparison of Godzilla 1998 DVD vs Blu-Ray. You’ll have to view the full sized images (click each image to see the full sized version) to see the details, but there’s definately been an improvement.
Hope this helps!
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