Varan the Unbelievable (1962)

Varan the Unbelievable
Directed by Jerry A. Baerwitz (Ishiro Honda uncredited)
Written by Sid Harris
1962/USA/Japan
Cory Film Corporation/Dallas Productions Inc./Toho Company (uncredited)
First viewing/Amazon Prime

The scariest monsters are the ones that live within our souls.  — Edgar Allen Poe

Obake didn’t want his name used in this terrible movie so he’s called Varan in the poster art.

Studly, masterful Cmdr. James Bradley lives a perpetual honeymoon with his submissive Japanese wife Anna on a remote Japanese island where he conducts desalinization experiments. He appears to command the Japanese military on the island, possibly in all Japan.  The experiments involve dumping chemicals in the local sacred lake, which the natives believe to be occupied by a monster named Obake.  Bradley’s plans involve evacuating the villagers but Anna pleads for them so he merely quarantines the lake. We can all see where this is going.

Every ham-fisted step Bradley takes to deal with his ensuing problems makes matters worse until he outsmarts both the military and Obake to save the day.

For now, this one holds the title as worst kaiju movie I have ever seen.  It is perhaps unfair as the Americanization seems to have removed about 75% of the Japanese original and replaced it with utter inanity.  Watch at your own risk.