Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire review

Image Source: IMDb.com

Movie: Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire

Production Company: Legendary Entertainment

Director: Adam Wingard

Producers: Thomas Tull, Mary Parent, Jon Jashni, Eric McLeod, Brian Rogers, Alex Garcia

Scriptwriters: Terry Rossio, Simon Barrett, Jeremy Slater

Main Cast: Rebecca Hall, Brian Tyree Henry, Dan Stevens, Kaylee Hottle

Release Date: 29th March 2024

Running Time: 115 minutes

Certificate: 12A

Introduction: The latest installment in Warner Bro’s ‘Monsterverse’ (which seem to be getting worse and worse) is a boring, overstuffed, ugly mess.

Synopsis: Godzilla and Kong must team up to face a new threat which unravels the mysteries of Skull Island.

Analysis: First and foremost, I do admit I was sharpening my knives heading into this as none of the trailers filled me with any hope or expectation. To me, all this looked like was the equivalent of Hollywood throwing up all over the screen and had absolutely none of the visual flair the other installments had (those being ‘Godzilla’ and ‘Kong: Skull Island’); turns out I was right to be so trepidatious. I love monster movies, I truly do have a soft spot for them. The 2014 ‘Godzilla’ -the film that starting it all- is one of my favorite films of all time thanks to director Gareth Edward’s extraordinarily breathtaking vision and style. So it is with a heavy heart that I have to say that I thought this was a gargantuan mess. Director Adam Wingard just does not have the same eye Edwards does, and it suffers as a result. The same can be said for ‘Godzilla vs Kong’ too which he also directed back in 2021.

There are many issues with ‘Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire’ but the primary one is rather simple; none of these instalments since 2014 have had anywhere near the visual heft, weight and spectacle that ‘Godzilla’ was able to capture so, so well (the halo jump sequence in that film is one of the most spectacular sequences I have ever seen in a film). ‘Kong: Skull Island’ is the only other to have come close, but even that was not quite able to do so. Never in this film did I ever find myself in absolutely awe over how humongous these monsters are as I have been in the past. This is the main thing you are looking for in these films and, if it cannot even accomplish that, then it doesn’t work (I saw this in IMAX as well so that makes it even worse). I did not find any of the fight scenes all that spectacular either; it is just stuff happening on screen.

The special effects for the big beasties looked far more unremarkable than I was expecting them to and they even looked cheap which I did not expect myself to say- certainly when you compare them to previous films. The central irony I found is that they looked pretty much identical to the excellent ‘Godzilla: Minus One’ which cost at least $100 million less than this and was still able to look incredible. The writing, plot and characters are as weak and disposable as they have always been in this franchise so that is nothing new here. The plot moves far too quickly for it’s own good, you are off to the races as soon as the film starts and it’s all simply too much and in your face. As the film progresses, they stuff and stuff the plot with even more elements, and boredom started to creep in.

As is always the case with these types of films, some battle sequences take place in populated areas in which (I reckon) thousands of innocent people must’ve been killed, but hey-ho, I guess that doesn’t matter (so much for saving the world). If you do decide to check it out, see it on the biggest and loudest screen if you can. In the end, ‘Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire’ proved to me exactly what I feared it would be; an unremarkable and unengaging disappointment. I do worry for what is in store for the future.

In cinemas now.

Overall Rating: 4/10 – Disappointing

Target Audience: 12+

Content Warning: moderate fantasy violence, threat, injury detail

Recommendation: No