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Image Entertainment presents
Ultraman Tiga & Ultraman Dyna (1998)

Commander: Once we get this mass produced, Super G.U.T.S. won't have to risk their lives.
Captain Hibiki: Taking risks is necessary if human beings wish to defend their virtue. If we start relying on machines...
Dr. Kisaragi: Relying on Ultraman Dyna invites more trouble and danger.

- Unknown, Ryo Kinomoto, Aya Sugimoto

Review By: Jeff Ulmer   
Published: June 11, 2002

Stars: Takeshi Tsuruno, Ryo Kinomoto, Toshikazu Fukawa, Jou Onodera
Other Stars: Mariya Yamada, Mio Takaki, Aya Sugimoto, Takaki Yoshimoto, Shigeki Kagemura
Director: Kazuya Konaka

Manufacturer: Ritek
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (rubber suits, model violence)
Run Time: 01h:07m:40s
Release Date: May 14, 2002
UPC: 014381038729
Genre: action


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
A B-AA D+

DVD Review

Mai: This is so exciting! I always wanted to do this.
Asuka: Don't get too excited. We may crash.

In today's world of ultrarealistic computer-generated special effects, there is something nostalgically rewarding about seeing men in rubber suits trample through model cities in elaborately choreographed battles. The creator of this Japanese legacy was the legendary Eiji Tsuburaya, responsible for the special effects work on 1954's Gojira, a film that, to this day, is a science fiction landmark. Tsuburaya would split from his employer, Toho, to create his own production studio, and in 1965 developed the TV series Ultra Q. Its successor would be Ultraman (originally Urutoraman), the story of a giant alien pilot who merges with a human being, becoming Earth's savior from the race of aliens who destroyed his home world. The Ultraman franchise would grow to encompass several TV series, some of which made their way stateside in the early 1970s, and a huge merchandise catalogue.

Each Ultraman series takes place in a different universe, and while there had been earlier movies, the Ultraman Tiga & Ultraman Dyna: Warriors of the Star of Light (Urutoraman Teiga & Urutoraman Daina: Hikari no hoshi no senshi tachi) feature film was the first to bring these separate worlds together. The cast of the Ultraman Dyna TV series stars in this adventure, with cameos from members of the Ultraman Tiga show as well.

As the movie opens, a terrifying monster from the planet Monera is attacking Earth, and the seven-member Super G.U.T.S. (Global Unlimited Task Squad) team is in orbit trying to fend off the creature. Out of nowhere comes earth's guardian, Ultraman Dyna, who takes on his foe on the lunar surface. Surprisingly, the monster is able to overpower Dyna, but just when it looks like all is lost, a magnificent spacecraft materializes and blasts the monster with its powerful ray gun.

Back on Earth, the Super G.U.T.S. assemble at a secret military command post, where they are informed of the nature of the ship that saved their bacon. Professor Rui Kisaragi has developed a new breed of spacecraft, one that can learn from humans, and enlists the Super G.U.T.S. to relay their fighting strategies to the machine via a psychic interface. Asuka Shin, who is secretly Ultraman Dyna, is the first to undergo the procedure, but little does he suspect the Professor's true intentions. The plot is revealed when she launches the ship, obviously possessed by the alien race set on conquering the world. When the spacecraft transforms into a giant fighting robot, Ultraman Dyna has to save the day—but with his fighting tactics known to the ship's computer, he faces great adversity.

To make matters worse, the Queen Monera makes an appearance, and manages to capture Ultraman Dyna. With the fate of the world at stake, there is only one person who stands a chance of overcoming the queen, but it will take the strength of a nation to summon him.

Ultraman Tiga & Ultraman Dyna is great, old time adventurous fun. Trampling through minature sets and striking awkward poses for battle, one has to appreciate the model work and special effects that go into a show like this—the goofiness of the rubber suits is part of the charm. Adding a new dimension to the effects is the CGI work, which like the rest, stick out like a sore thumb, but has some defining moments, like Deathfacer's transformation sequence. While the movie barely breaks an hour in runtime, there is plenty of action, and loads of that Saturday morning style storytelling. Of the two that Image has just released, this Ultraman movie is the more mature, based on adult characters. I love it!

Rating for Style: A
Rating for Substance: B-

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: The 1.85:1 anamorphic transfer is immaculate, with no print defects to speak of. Detail is exceptional, colors are clean and vibrant, and black levels solid. Fine grain is rendered naturally, offering a very film-like appearance. There is no sign of edge enhancement or aliasing. This looks fantastic.

Image Transfer Grade: A

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Japanese, Englishyes
Dolby Digital
5.1
Japanese, Englishyes


Audio Transfer Review: Audio is available in either Japanese or English dub in 5.1 or 2.0 surround tracks. The Japanese 5.1 track is clean, with good definition, and moderate, though effective use of the surrounds. The English dub is pretty lackluster performance wise, and has a technical problems with plosives in the recording. Both 5.1 tracks have a more commanding bottom end, and much more enveloping audio, but otherwise is comparable to the 2.o tracks. A 2.0 music only track is also available.

Audio Transfer Grade: A

 

Disc Extras

Full Motion menu
Scene Access with 11 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
2 Original Trailer(s)
Packaging: unmarked keepcase
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: Menus are full motion with various music from the film included.

Extras are limited to separate Japanese and English trailers for Ultraman Tiga & Ultraman Dyna: Warriors of the Star of Light (here entitled Ultraman Tiga & Ultraman Dyna: Warriors of the Lightning Star) and a Japanese trailer for Ultraman Gaia: The Battle for Hyperspace.

Extras Grade: D+

 

Final Comments

Fending off alien invaders takes Super G.U.T.S., and a little help from Ultraman Tiga & Ultraman Dyna. This short feature film provides great, classic entertainment as giant rubber-suited beings stomp around the city. Break out your laser beams, and prepare for some monstrous action.

 


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