Gulliver’s Travels Beyond the Moon (1965)

aka Gariba no uchu ryoko
Article 1810 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 2-27-2006
Posting Date: 7-27-2006
Directed by Masao Kuroda and Sanae Yamamoto
Featuring the voices of Herb Duncan, Robert Harter, Chiyoko Honma

A young boy meets Gulliver, who has built a rocket ship for his next set of travels. They go to the Star of Hope, where they encounter a civilization menaced by robots.

Fans of the exuberant melodies of composer Milton Delugg (most famous for “Hooray for Santa Claus” from SANTA CLAUS CONQUERS THE MARTIANS ) will have a great time with the English dub of this movie, as he supplies the music and the songs. Those not taken with his particular muse will find this Japanese science fiction/fantasy tougher going. Still, both groups will have to contend with the song where they give the talking crow a few verses to warble. It’s not so much that he’s a bad singer (“Hooray for Santa Claus” didn’t exactly have the finest vocalists ever produced by kiddom); it’s just that when he demonstrates this inability to sing, he does so in the aggressive raucous spirit of Ethel Merman, and the results are almost painful. Still, singing crows notwithstanding, this isn’t a bad children’s movie; it takes a little while to get going, but the sequences on the Star of Hope are actually rather interesting. Granted, I’m no real judge of children’s movies, though I do admit to having a little fondness for those that get rather weird and silly. This one was interesting enough that I may well watch it again sometime. Just excuse me if I turn down the sound at a crucial moment…


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