Star Cast: Alexander Skarsgård, Millie Bobby Brown, Rebecca Hall, Brian Tyree Henry, Kaylee Hottle
Director: Adam Wingard
What’s Good: This, after Skull Island, could prove to be ‘the’ turning point makers of the saga are hoping for decades now
What’s Bad: It introduces too many intriguing things at once but fail to utilise a few of them fully
Loo Break: It’s loaded with things that will hold you back from leaving the chaotic-yet-entertaining zone it builds
Watch or Not?: Even if you haven’t seen a single part of this saga, go for the madness designed
In isolation, we see the king of monsters being kept in a ‘Kong Containment’ zone. Within minutes the story steers from Kong’s annoyance of being trapped in a very Hunger-Gameish like world to Godzilla attacking him out of the blue when he’s chained. Some dumb humans on earth form an organisation named Apex Cybernetics with the main motive of keeping the number of alpha titans alive to one.
Somehow Kong’s guardian angles Dr Ilene Andrews (Rebecca Hall) & Jia (Kaylee Hottle), convince him to listen to the dumb humans but regret it sooner than they decided to go that way. The plan is to follow the hollow earth concept & they lure in Kong to go there by bluffing him that it might be his home. Will the Kong follow the orders while facing the water-block created by Godzilla? That’s what the rest of the story is all about.
Godzilla vs Kong Movie Review: Script Analysis
It took me a while to figure out how, after a very good Skull Island & a crap-bag in King Of The Monsters, the makers took a step in an altogether different direction this time. Yes, it still bears the usual cliches its predecessors had, but this leaps from being a MonsterVerse to a SuperHeroMonsterVerse. But the inclusion of Thor: Ragnarok‘s writer Eric Pearson combined with the classic traditional touch from Max Borenstein, who has been in this universe longer than most of the team, creates the whole superheroisque aura around the monsters.
It’s a homecoming for the writer, Terry Rossio, who penned the story for the first Godzilla film (1998) entirely produced by a Hollywood studio. Teaming up with King Of Monsters’ director Michael Dougherty, Terry makes sure to keep at least one intriguing objective going on-screen throughout the whole film. Though the main purpose of the film remains unclear, the mini-missions in between keep the monstertainment afloat. There are no visible fillers to impact the film’s characters’ grip, constantly exploring this war between the alpha-titans.
Ben Seresin, with his camerawork in Brad Pitt’s World War Z, proved how high he could raise the bar if the rest of the departments stick to solid ground. That’s what he has done here; while capturing the two skyscraper-sized monsters, it’s not always about them. He places the camera in a remote office of Japan, using its tall windows to be the medium of depicting Kong & Godzilla’s destructive shenanigans. While maintaining the whole modern Blue-Orange tinted theme, the colours add to the film’s whimsical feel.
I could fill this section up with how much I was sucked into the immersive experience of the film’s 4DX version, but to brief you – this is the closest you could get to the experience of actually being in the film’s universe (until, of course, VR takes over). I was officially sold when the seat started vibrating to the beats of Junkie XL’s sick soundtrack (more on this, later in the review).
Godzilla vs Kong Movie Review: Star Performance
I know we don’t usually credit the VFX-backed creatures of these films, but let’s take a moment to appreciate how hard the VFX supervisors have worked there as* off to bring them on screen. From making Kong talk through sign-language to making him drink the gross Green-coloured dragon-blood, this is the best use of furry-haired monster in its universe. It has a thick edge over Godzilla, which was totally understandable after the performance of their respective last films.
Child actor Kaylee Hottle’s bond with Kong helps to build an emotional connect with the story, which was more or less missing since the Empire State Building stint in 2005’s King Kong. Alexander Skarsgård gets too little to play around facing an underwhelming character arc. Millie Bobby Brown & Brian Tyree Henry’s track keeps jumping from useless to useful, landing into the latter in the latter half of the movie.
Godzilla vs Kong Movie Review: Direction, Music
Adam Wingard surprises and how? This is the first of his work I’m watching, and his understanding of the universe proves to be a great deal in packaging this adrenaline-pumping entertainer. The action sequences are difficult but a low hanging fruit in such movies, and the director who performs outside that excels. Adam tries to mashup the ‘monstertainment’ with the humans around them, and those prove to be the most impactful scenes.
You know good times are here when Tom Holkenborg, aka Junkie XL, feeds you with his version of electro-fusion tunes for a second back to back week (after Zack Snyder’s Justice League). The primary thing this universe has been missing for years is a pumping score from the likes of Junkie XL. Though Henry Jackman did an astounding job with Skull Island, Tom masterfully mixes the classic underlying theme with his understanding of trance, electronica & techno-pop.
Godzilla vs Kong Movie Review: The Last Word
All said and done, if you can find a 4DX theatre near you, don’t miss the chance to aboard this bat-sh*t crazy ride to the monster verse. Even if not 4DX, make sure to watch it on the biggest & clearest screen accessible to you.
Three and a half stars!
Godzilla vs Kong Trailer
Godzilla vs. Kong releases on 24th March 2021.
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Are you more of a zombie person? Read our Army Of The Dead review to watch a brilliant film with a lot of zombies.