What’s The Movie? Godzilla vs Kong
What’s It All About, JG? If you can’t work it out from the title, I’m not sure what I can do to help, really. Monsters fighting monsters (but then also fighting a robot). Surprise, right? Anyway the technically-there plot is that Godzilla attacks a research base unexpectedly while Kong, who has been taught basic sign-language by a deaf girl, is transported from Skull Island to help get into the Hollow Earth. Midway there, there’s a big slap-fight between Godzilla and Kong, then Kong does indeed get inside the Hollow Earth where there’s a throne-room where his people once ruled from (I guess?) and big-ass axe made from a previous Godzilla’s dorsal fin. Some people – all the humans, from the little deaf girl to major characters are all just “some people”, really – have built Mechagodzilla and it’s down to our deaf friend to convince Kong to stop fighting Actual Godzilla and team up to defeat the robot one. Which, in a vastly destructive Hong Kong sequence, they do. The movie ends with the two Titans going their separate ways and Kong ruling once more beneath the Earth.
Why Did You Give It A Go? Well, the MonsterVerse (everything has to be a -Verse these days, it seems) have been mostly fine. The first Godzilla was a bit sluggish but decent, Skull Island is a movie I wish I enjoyed as much as its advocates (it’s… OK, but I still don’t see what all the fuss is) and Godzilla: King Of The Monsters is great monsters-fighting-monsters fun. So obviously I was going to see this.
Is It Any Good? It’s exactly what it is. Which is to say, if you want to see a huge lizard fight a huge ape fight a huge robot then boy have we got a movie for you! But if you are here looking for some kind of nuanced insight into the human condition? Well, then we don’t. Godzilla v Kong is an extremely unpretentious movie which exists for one reason and one reason only – to see the two eponymous Titans slugging it out, and then also an extra robotic monster just for shits and giggles. That’s your lot. All the human character exist purely in service to that plot, from Alexander Skarsgard’s definitely-not-a-leading-man Dr Nathan Lind, roped reluctantly in to the whole thing to… well, everyone really. Millie Bobby Brown’s back from the last movie for…erm, reasons, but really, the human cast are just there to move from one big fight to the other. The movie’s a little slow to get going but once it does there’s no holding back on the action. The ‘Zilla vs Kong fight in the middle of the ocean is extremely well done and by the time we get to the three-way in Hong Kong it’s just a relentless barrage of fights. Which, I mean, that’s what this is for isn’t it? Yeah, the human characters are one-dimensional – Mechagodzilla’s remote pilot, Ren Serizawa (played by Shun Oguri) is so one-dimensional, in fact, his full name might as well have been Bad Guy. But he’s piloting a fucking big robotic dinosaur via telepathy! What else is he going to be?
How Many Of These Have You Watched? As mentioned above, all of the MonsterVerse movies and a reasonable amount, but by no means complete a complete set, of the original movies.
Would You Recommend It? Yeah, if you want a good monster movie. I mean, in a way reviewing a movie like Godzilla v Kong is almost self-defeating. What are you going to say about a movie whose sole reason to exist is a big monster fight and then there’s several big monster fights? Truthfully, this movie is a dumb as a bag of wet hair, but of course it is. The whole Hollow Earth stuff – up to and including “reverse gravity” – is hilariously idiotic, to the point where you feel Peter Cushing or Doug McClure ought to be on set, but there’s a great confidence to the production that lets the carry all this stuff off, however ridiculous it might be. Similarly, Kong getting flown the last part of the journey to Antarctica to enter the Hollow Earth – slung beneath a bunch of helicopters in a big net – is preposterous but it’s precisely the right kind of preposterous and so, again, the movie gets away with it. There’s a gleeful, rather infectious, sense of the movie simply committing to itself and going hell for leather into the most absurd choices and it pretty much gets away with them all. This is a confident, silly and profoundly enjoyable piece of absolute trash that should be treasured for what it is. Which is a monster fighting a monster fighting a robot monster. Hurrah for that!
Scores On The Doors? I gave Godzilla: King Of The Monsters an 8/10, which I stand by, and I’m going to give the 7.5 / 10. There’s more action here but KOTM had more actual monsters, and also Mothra.