In 2004, I was transfixed by the visuals and outrageous plot of Peter Jackson’s “King Kong.” It was from that movie that my love for the giant gorilla began, and my feelings only grew when the trailer for “Godzilla vs. Kong” came out.
“Godzilla vs. Kong” gives the audience exactly what was advertised: an epic showdown between the two iconic titans. But is a huge fight enough to keep an audience engaged throughout the entire movie?
Unfortunately, having the two icons fight it out on the big screen isn’t enough. Because the movie is mostly focused on the monsters, the human characters don’t have nearly as compelling a story as is needed and don’t add much to the plot. This being said, there are still plenty of enjoyable parts of the movie.
The film begins by showing Kong being kept in a sanctuary by scientists for his own protection against Godzilla, who has been randomly attacking a cyber company called Apex Cybernetics. In order to prevent more attacks, the CEO of Apex enlists Kong to stop him.
One of the enjoyable aspects of the movie is how humanized Kong seems to be. He has a friendship with a young deaf girl from his home island named Jia, and they are able to communicate through sign language. It’s nice to see these titans from a different point of view, as the filmmakers showcased their more emotional, delicate side. Showing these sides gave them so much more depth.
Though the monsters were rich with emotional depth, most of the human characters seemed to lack any. Millie Bobby Brown reprises her role of Madison Russell from 2019’s “Godzilla: King of the Monsters,” who, in the first movie, seemed to have a similar relationship with Godzilla as Jia does with Kong. However, we don’t see this friendship at all in this movie; we just see Madison go off with her friends to try to tell people that Godzilla is being provoked, and then go and reunite with her dad at the end. There wasn’t any substance to her story, and she seemed to be there just to be there.
For a film that is mostly based around computer-generated monsters, the cinematography for the movie was exceptional. The way the camera would zoom in for close-ups on their faces or follow them whenever one of them fell during a fight scene really let the audience feel the perspective of the titans.
The editing choices made in the film were strange to say the least. For some scenes in the movie, it felt like some characters had super speed. In one particular scene, we see Madison arguing with her dad at his lab in Florida, which isn’t near her hometown, but in the next scene she’s back at her house in her room. While it might not be a huge factor, it was a little off-putting.
Toward the end of the movie, we see the two titans go their separate ways after helping each other defeat a common enemy, and most of the human characters survive. There couldn’t have been a better outcome. Overall, “Godzilla vs. Kong” is a mindless action movie that delivers what was advertised: a huge fight. The action and fight scenes are epic, and the monsters seem more human than the actual humans in the film. It was great to see these two iconic characters come together on the screen for the first time since 1962, and hopefully they’ll be on the big screen together again.