Released on Thursday 1st April to Amazon Prime Video, Godzilla vs Kong does exactly what it says on the tin. It pits two of cinema's fiercest monsters against eachother and sees them battling it out to see which titan is truly the apex predator. The only problem is that there's genuinely not a lot else to enjoy from the movie.
For some reason I had high hopes for this. I remember being 14, heading to the cinema to see 2014's Godzilla as Bryan Cranston shed light upon the impact these titanic monsters' destructive nature has on the average Joe. It was gritty, mysterious and intriguing, but also fairly respectful of our intellect as a paying audience. Fast forward to 2021 and Hollywood just likes franchises to go 'boom boom' and put money in executives' pockets.
I was naive to just how bland Godzilla vs Kong would be when compared to a 2014 movie that at least tried to do something intelligent.
The issue stems from unlikeable, unfunny characters with bland and at times corny dialogue who serve very little to the actually plot other than to explain what's going on and occasionally go "wow" . They're almost positioned as 'team Kong' and 'team Godzilla'. Team Kong’s characters are actually somewhat likeable. The other’s, no. They literally do nothing, risk nothing and attempt to make you laugh to absolutely no avail. Without them the movie could easily have been better, shorter at least.
But nothing will make you laugh more than a story (even for a film of this nature) that feels way too out of this world at times, especially when compared to 2014’s franchise-spawning Godzilla. That was a film built around mystery and respect for these great titans, grounded in our world with military procedures and high stakes. At times, Godzilla vs Kong feels more like some weird neon Star Trek adventure to another world. It's full to the brim with bright neon lights at every turn which look cool and simultaneously silly. A hollow plot (quite literally at times) and terrible logic only take you out of the movie and divert from what you really came to see: Godzilla having a boxing match with King Kong.
They are the two main characters. A protagonist and an antagonist. That’s who you care about, but whose focus are pulled away from far too often by Millie Bobby Brown and her trio of idiots. Godzilla is a big scary god, a titan that saves humanity. So why is he going around killing people? And will he kill King Kong?
And yes, when it gets to it the CGI fisticuffs between our two god-like predators in amongst a jungle of skyscrapers, overhead helicopters or even upon aircraft carriers this movie is epic. It's got some spectacular visuals to offer and will make for a brilliant 'have on in the background' kind of movie. But we all knew it probably would have that, so it's disappointing to see no other pleasant surprises on offer.
Sure the one I wanted to win won, but the end result is unceremoniously bland. It’s a visual experience that would obviously be improved in a cinema, only further proving that cinemas definitely aren’t leaving us anytime soon. In fact, unless you save your money until you get to a cinema this experience can only really be a 5/10 at most.
If you’ve come to Godzilla vs Kong looking for some indulgent Hollywood action and big budget video game cut scenes then you’re in the right place. That’s, predictably, where the appeal was here. Once you settle into the fact that you're not getting any kind of feasible storytelling your way you can invest in one exciting question; Godzilla or Kong? And there is most definitely a winner.
Any good? Don’t expect anything other than two huge cgi monsters having a fight because that’s literally all the substance here.
Godzilla vs Kong is now available to rent on Amazon Prime Video