3/19/18

Godzilla vs. Megalon "Big Box" VHS (Star Classics, 1985)

Godzilla vs. Mecha...Lon...
In the earlier days of VHS, you may recall, there existed over-sized packaging which is today often referred to as the "big box."  Most likely, this was primarily done because manufacturers were worried that most VHS were shoplifter-sized, and could fit into a coat pocket.  (If you remember this, then you also remember that when compact discs hit the market, they were also over-packaged, for the same reason, in "long boxes".)


Today, we are looking at what is probably the only Godzilla film to be released in the big box format, and of course it would be GODZILLA vs MEGALON.  Issued by Star Classics in 1985, it's infamous for a few reasons, of which the packaging is the first.  Secondly, you will notice that they mistakenly used a cover photo from GODZILLA vs MECHAGODZILLA, which is bad enough, but thirdly, on the back of the box, they list the release date as being "1940."


Interestingly, Star Classics--the very same year--also produced a regular-sized edition of MEGALON, this time in a yellow box rather than the light gray seen above...and, even though they flipped it,  still retained the same Mechagodzilla photo! They did fix the year, though.


I've attempted to catalog all of the Godzilla VHS releases in the USA here:  Godzilla VHS Chronology.

3 comments:

Christopher Sobieniak said...

I remember the Star Classics boxes being like this, though my copy of "Little Shop of Horrors" oddly put the tape on one side in a paper sleeve that had a huge gap between the tape and the left end of the box, probably had a piece of styrofoam stuck in there that was discarded.

Of course their tapes were all standard PD material of the time, so they probably had George Romero's Night of the Living Dead and the holiday stalwart It's A Wonderful Life like everybody else in the 80's. I noticed Rene Laloux's Fantastic Planet was also under this label, too (another PD victim prior the 21st Century, and the Criterion releases we have today).

Secondly, you will notice that they mistakenly used a cover photo from GODZILLA vs MECHAGODZILLA, which is bad enough, but thirdly, on the back of the box, they list the release date as being "1940.

No doubt a PD tactic to throw people off! Of course Star Classics wasn't the only one to release this movie on VHS given its dubious distribution trouble.

I've attempted to catalog all of the Godzilla VHS releases in the USA here: Godzilla VHS Chronology.

And of course this film was the most pirated, it figures! Amazing how many different companies did release the Toho monster flicks otherwise.

Sampoerna Quatrain said...

I had forgotten all about the little styrofoam pieces that were sometimes in those "big boxes"! Sometimes even UNDER the tape...it's interesting how the boxes had to evolve; lots of times early on you would find "side-loading" boxes, like became the standard for blank tapes.

And between the movies you mentioned, MEGALON, and probably Laurel and Hardy's UTOPIA, we have probably listed half the contents of any VHS bargain bin in 1985!

Christopher Sobieniak said...

I recall RCA Columbia Pictures Home Video once had paper sleeves where the tapes came out the side as well.