Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire Review – Bigger and Better

In some ways, Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire is just another big-budget Hollywood CGI extravaganza, something we’ve seen plenty of examples of over and over every year for the past two decades. But, like the previous MonsterVerse movies, Godzilla x Kong has its own distinct vibe and aesthetic that sets it apart from all those generic blockbusters that studios and broadcasters are looking for. Sure, there’s no substance to this giant adventure, but when your movie is otherwise so entertaining and well put together, you don’t really need that.

It’s been a while since Godzilla and King Kong battled each other and Mecha Godzilla destroyed Hong Kong in the last movie, and everyone is trying to get used to living with these massive creatures that randomly kill a lot of people. They slaughter They go about their business – at the start of the film, Godzilla has to fight another titan in Rome before curling up in a ball and taking a nap in the Colosseum.

In contrast, Kong has spent his time underground in the world of Hollow Earth, where the Monarch has established a series of bases to track his movements and study the wild ecosystem there. New paths open up for Kong to explore until he finally encounters a group of hostile giant apes who have enslaved all the other apes of the Hollow Earth. The group is led by a particularly mean monkey named King Oscar – he wants to dominate the level. But Kong is able to recruit a baby giant ape from among them to help as a guide and aid in the fight.

On the human side of things, we’re more concerned with one group of people – Rebecca Hall, Brian Tyree Henry and the young deaf actress Keely Hottel returning from the last film, along with newcomer Dan Stevens, who is a delightful addition. They spend the film exploring the Hollow Earth trying to figure out what Kong is up to and how they can help him, and in the process, they encounter more of the Iwi that used to live on Skull Island. It’s a good main band – but the real standout might be Hottle. He has the ability and screen presence to hold his own against the seasoned adult cast and deliver a surprisingly memorable human performance amidst all the CGI.

Just like last time with Godzilla vs. Kong, director Adam Wingard has delivered a relatively substantial film with a running time of less than two hours, which is highly unusual in the current landscape of blockbusters that often run over 150 minutes. The recent Dune part 2. Wingard seems to have a knack for simplifying his films to their original story beats while still keeping them cohesive.

That’s a really good thing for Godzilla X-Kong, which never gets bogged down with a significant amount of its story. Instead, it means more time to watch Godzilla and Kong fight some new bad guys. But despite the order of their names in the title, this is primarily a King Kong movie. Godzilla does a lot of fighting, but he spends the majority of the film on the surface lasering his mouth up – that’s why the spikes on his back are pink – awaiting the arrival of the Skar King.

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Meanwhile, Kong’s journey through the Hollow Earth is a lot of fun and rarely involves human characters – we really get Kong’s POV during these long, dialogue-free sections of the film. But his story is a familiar one—a man discovers his relatives are enslaved or captured, and he must defeat the bad guy to free them—so it’s easy to follow and a lot of fun. And it also means a lot of giant ape action, and those fights are great. But there’s a reason Kong needs Godzilla’s help—Kong is getting beat by these new baddies and clearly can’t beat them on his own.

While the first two episodes saw battles at a fast and furious clip, the final act of Godzilla x Kong takes things to a whole new level with several major non-stop fights between them, culminating in a suitably destructive showdown in Rio de Janeiro. to be And while Wingard also directed the last film, the final battle has a very different look and feel this time around – it’s remarkable that these fights can still feel fresh after watching so many of them, but that’s a credit. It is for Wingard. and his team

Is Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire the kind of blockbuster that people are talking about last year’s Godzilla Minus One? No, it’s not ambitious in that sense. Godzilla x Kong is just a slick, very good action movie with a cohesive story that wraps itself up before you get a chance to tire of it, and yet you never feel like half of the plot has been removed. . Marvel movies do in recent years.

Godzilla X Kong is fun, cohesive, and under two hours—a rare thing for a major studio movie these days. Let’s celebrate it.

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