Review: Godzilla vs Kong (2021)

When the two titans of the big screen come head to head expect some collateral damage as this movie gets messy.

PLOT AND STORY 

What Warner Brothers tells you is that this is the epic next chapter in the cinematic Monsterverse and pits two of the greatest icons in motion picture history against one another – the fearsome Godzilla and the mighty Kong – with humanity caught in the balance. In reality that plays quite a small part of this movie unfortunately. 

Writing credits show the story is by Terry Rossio, Michael Dougherty and Zach Shields with the screenplay by Eric Pearson and Max Borenstein. Maybe there were too many cooks who spoiled the broth as this movie really struggled to carve out a clear direction. 

This movie has similar problems to the 2014 Godzilla and 2019 King of Monsters movie which had too much drama and not enough monster action. I struggle to see why you make a movie called Godzilla vs King Kong and don’t make either of your titular characters the main focus. We have 3 different human stories running simultaneously, none of which are interesting or engage the audience and by the end have very little impact on the movie.

What’s the most disappointing thing about the movie is the plot surrounding Godzilla vs Kong really works. I understand why they fight and why the story goes in the direction it does. It’s just unfortunate we have to be dragged through countless human drama scenes to get there, most of which I found unnecessary. 

The final thing to say about the writing of this movie is how predictable it was. Watching it with my children and hearing a 9 year old predict exactly what will happen next shows you very little creativity was put into this story. 

PRODUCTION AND DIRECTION 

Much like with King of Monsters this is where the movie will earn lots of praise. A CGI and special effect heavy movie delivered very well. Every scene with Godzilla and Kong in looks incredible and when they do battle it truly is a spectacle and director Adam Wingard should be proud of making a very good looking movie. 

There are two main battles showing great creativity and variety. The first is in a water setting and the second is on land in a city and both of these scenes alone make the movie worth watching. The colours, the sounds, the effects and the destruction demands your attention and I found myself with a huge grin on my face during both these scenes from start to finish.

Tom Holkenborg aka Junkie XL provides a great score to this movie and this is another area which will receive praise from critics. His distinctive atmospheric, bass driven music enhances every scene, especially the fight sequences. 

CAST

A large somewhat over inflated cast which contributed to the boring, stretched out human story.

The only human part of the story I found myself vaguely interested in was that which involved Millie Bobby Brown, Julian Dennison and Brian Tyree Henry characters Maddison, Josh and Bernie. They delivered all the fun and humorous moments of the movie while also contributing to the overall outcome of the story.

The most troubling character in the whole movie I found to be Maya played by Eliza Gonzalez who seemed to serve no purpose to the story other than being some eye candy for the screen. She flutters around in a tight outfit with no meaningful contribution and as nice as she is to look at, I struggled to grasp the point to her character. 

Alexander Skarsgard, Rebecca Hall, Shun Oguri, Kyle Chandler and Kaylee Hottle round out the cast of new and returning characters.

FINAL THOUGHTS 

Godzilla vs Kong has some very impressive, high calibre action sequences brilliantly displaying the brutality and destructive nature of two giant iconic monsters. Unfortunately these moments are far and few between with too much time being taken up by human drama. COVID ruined the opportunity to see this in the cinema but I can imagine in IMAX this would be an impressive feast for the eyes.

I watched this via a Sky Store purchase and received no incentive to review this movie. All images are owned by and courtesy of Warner Bros.

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