Godzilla vs. Kong
Godzilla vs. Kong (2021) movie review
The fourth film in the most recent Monsterverse following the titular Godzilla and King Kong, Godzilla vs. Kong follows- Godzilla. And King Kong. And there gonna fight. And you’d better believe it. Okay going a little bit deeper, Godzilla begins to go on a bit of a rampage that useless returning characters from the last film can’t explain, so in an attempt to stop him, some new characters attempt to travel to Hollow Earth with King Kong. To find something that can stop Godzilla. Because much like in the original 1962/63 film, King Kong is a giant monkey and Godzilla can breath atomic fire.
If you want a movie where a giant monkey punches a giant lizard, and you want that fight to be actually cool, and you don’t care how the movie makes it happen, hey you’ll have a fun time with this big, dumb, stupid movie that is- somehow fairly entertaining. But if you are going into this expecting at least as much monster action as you got with Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), or you are wanting anything else this film is advertising aside from that fight, you will walk away very disappointed. Since this is the film that is apparently going to save theaters, I say go see it! But just have really really low expectations when you do…
I was going to keep my thoughts on the film a bit of a secret until we got into it, but let’s face it- I don’t think there’s a version of this movie that is good. Better? Absolutely. But based on the stories from both the original film and this one, unless you simply showcased 45 minutes of action with very little buildup, you cannot stretch this idea into a feature film without padding it with story that doesn’t matter. And we are now on film four of four in this series that totally misses the human element. That is not to say it isn’t there, just that it isn’t good.
While we are on the subject of the humans, here’s a list of characters who don’t matter: Millie Bobby Brown, Brian Tyree Henry, Julian Dennison, and Kyle Chandler. AKA the Godzilla half of the human characters. Demián Bichir and crew do deliver interesting characters in the same half though. And when I say interesting characters, I mean bland, cheesy, and not at all interesting characters. Now the cheesy thing I can get behind IF the film didn’t try its hardest to spoil the film as early as possible. But as it wears its screenplay in bold letters on a t-shirt, I can’t help sit back and think about how absolutely ridiculous the plot it. And I don’t mean the fight between King Kong and Godzilla. No somehow that is the competent side of the film…
But speaking of competent, I cannot believe this film manages to take King Kong, who has had a small handful of films and only ONE in this series compared to Godzilla’s dozens and dozens with two in this series, and make him not only the more likable of the two monsters, but a legitimately interesting character. Sure some of that has to do with the fact that Godzilla is king of a jerk in this movie, but I just read that this is the 36th Godzilla film and 12th Kong. That’s like pulling a Bond/Bourne crossover and successfully making James Bond a less interesting character than Jason Bourne. Which I’ll admit, is impressive. Kong’s relationship with first time acres Kaylee Hottle, who is deaf in real life, is also the heart of this film, and totally worth a point back for the many, many points I’ve taken away…
That said, before I get back into the negatives, I want to talk about a few more highlights. Rebecca Hall manages to be the only person in the cast who can exposited the consistently stupid dialogue that consists of 85% telling the audience the thing that just happened as if we were two years old, 25% trailer lines, and 11% babble to make the movie happen. And before you tell me that equals 100% and I’m amazing at math, I know. I figured that, since this movie makes perfect sense, I should try really hard with my logicalisms too. Very intelligence. Anyway, Tom Holkenborg’s score rocks. I don’t like that we keep paving over established themes in this series, but I get that sometimes its better to create new, and sometimes you don’t have the option. Also nobody cares but me about whether or not we use classic Godzilla themes. Hearing an updated version of Godzilla vs. Anguiras though- that would be amazing.
Okay positive thoughts, positive thoughts. Okay so you are here to see Godzilla and King Kong fight. And if you take away all the stupid, you do get a solid 30+ minutes of rather exciting action that- really makes this movie watchable. There’s some annoying camera movements and, overall, some uninspired moments. But gosh darn it, this movie’s fight scenes are really cool! Now comparing them to Batman v Superman (2016), this feels SIGNIFICANTLY more watchable. Somehow dumber, but the action isn’t limited to one little fight on a rooftop before “Martha!”
So here’s the deal: This is definitely not a smart movie, and it deserves a bad rating. I am also seeing it again tonight… Sooooo yeah. Look, it’s stupid. It’s big, loud, kinda boring- but when it throws down, boy does it! So I think this boils down to audience expectations. Do you want a really competent vs movie from the two most famous movie kaiju? Because if you do, you may be expecting too much… That’s like getting fact food and asking who the Sous Chef who made your burger is. There isn’t one, go watch Oscar films. So is Godzilla vs. Kong good? Hahaha no, absolutely not! Is it worth going to see? Heck yeah it is! Honestly, dumb movies like this are a blast for me, ironic or not. 5/10, but maybe a good 5? Yeah it’s better than the original at least!
So Godzilla vs. Kong? Did you see it yet? What did you think? And what is your all-time favorite film(s) from these two monsters OUTSIDE of the 1933 and 1954 originals? Be sure to let us know in the comments, and hey leave a like! Or if there are other things you’d rather we talk about, let us know below and we’ll write something for you guys!
-review by Ryan Prince