The Monster Zero reconstruction is available now!
The 1080p HD reconstruction of the original US version of Monster Zero is completed and available to download! Have a look on the spleen or send a private message for details.
Notes on this release:
- The Toho transfer had its contrast and saturation boosted to alleviate its flat appearance.
- This version was synchronized to the Simitar widescreen DVD to ensure accuracy, but uses the Classic Media audio (synchronized to the Simitar audio) to avoid some volume and balance inconsistencies in the Simitar audio.
- The opening Henry G. Saperstein/UPA logos, most of the opening credits, and the Lake Myojin/Washigasawa location titles were carefully digitally recreated.
- The expository text at the beginning, the English newspaper headlines, the English insert of Namikawa’s letter to Glenn and the end title card are presented using a combination of the Simitar DVD (to retain the entire image) and the Classic Media DVD (to reduce artifacting around the text itself).
- The Toho transfer is typically missing a handful of frames at the beginning and end of each reel. Where the missing frames couldn’t be compensated for in a satisfactory fashion, the sound/sync reference was trimmed to match what was there.
Well, now that Ghidrah is out and hell year is over, looks like it’s time to move on to Monster Zero! So far all I’ve done is create the project file, add a rip of the Simitar DVD that I’ll be using as my guide and possibly the source for certain parts, and create usable rips of the Classic Media DVD and the Japanese Blu-ray. I’ll probably be approaching this in much the same way I did Ghidrah, only the syncing process will probably not take nearly as long, since only minimal edits were made to the film for the US version.
After this project’s done, I may take on a couple simple projects before moving on to the others I have planned. Depending on the level of interest, I may also undertake the recreation of the export version of this film, titled Invasion of the Astro-Monsters, which features a slightly different soundtrack and a few bits the Monster Zero version cuts out. (I’ll be working from an SD reconstruction provided by ultrase7en from Toho Kingdom, so I can’t really vouch for the absolute accuracy of what I’ll be creating, but it’ll be an interesting side project.) I’ll probably open up a poll on that one when I finish this first version. What I’ll almost definitely be doing is creating a new, more accurate version of my AIP Destroy All Monsters reconstruction based on some info provided by Space Hunter M - specifically, I’ll be taking a different approach to the splices in the reference copy and correcting some other small errors and issues with the old version.
But first, there’s Monster Zero. I’ll be starting by syncing the HD Japanese footage to the Simitar DVD, which is the best source available that’s actually taken from a US film element (unlike CM’s DVD). Then there’s the matter of recreating the logos, title and credits in HD in as many cases as possible. There are a few spots where I’ll have to revert to SD sources, but since the title and credits mostly appear over static backgrounds, I’ll be able to recreate the vast majority. There are also a couple of unique visuals during the film proper in the US version; I predict I’ll be able to recreate some of them, but others (I’m thinking of Namikawa’s note and possibly the newspaper headlines) will have to be left in SD. For the final touch, I’ll be comparing the quality of the Simitar and Classic Media audio tracks, and if the CM track is any better I’ll probably sync that up to the film.
This post has been edited.