Film in review: “Godzilla vs. King Kong”

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The Winonan’s film reporter rates “Godzilla vs. King Kong” 2/5 stars.

Noah Mruz, film reviewer

It’s that time of year; pastel colors on the eggs, schools almost out and there’s another blockbuster movie with a promise of big action scenes. This year, the roulette wheel stopped on the peg in between Godzilla and King Kong, so Warner Brothers decided to use them both for their latest theater/ HBO Max release, “Godzilla Vs. Kong”. The film follows two separate groups as they attempt to grasp a solution to why Godzilla is now seemingly attacking humanity at random. The film has a cast of recognizable actors and features the two iconic titans themselves. The film’s three biggest attributes are in its acting, plot and action.
Acting is the most important aspect in a film and it can make or break the film. Some actors do terrific and some do terrible jobs in the film.
There are so many jokes in the film that are supposed to bring laughter that just made me cringe. I’ll never forget the film’s iconic joke,“Did that big monkey just talk?” It’s (supposed to be) funny because we know King Kong is not just some big monkey, and as a viewer, you also are wondering if he talked. It’s great moments like that that work to make the audience bored in a way I hadn’t felt in a while. There are also moments where dialogue is just written confusingly, making you wonder if the screenwriters were also bored. The iconic line, “He is not only his equal but his superior” will live in the halls of screenwriting infamy until humanity is no more. I truly believe this is a script problem, since most of these actors have done a great job in other aspects, yet some seem themselves bored with the material. The dialogue is clunky at times, over-explaining simple plot points and leaving other points with minor explanations.
The plot of the film is fairly basic but not in a bad way. These are characters that have been around since the beginning of filmmaking. Most people are familiar with King Kong and Godzilla and the film doesn’t force you into a refresher of who they are. In a way, it is nice to have a big movie expect you to understand the characters, like a Batman film that doesn’t need to show you the Wayne parents dying for the 25th time. The downside to this, however, is that there is almost no time given to introduce the events of the previous movie and this movie. It seems almost like they wanted this installment to stand on its own, yet the plot can get confusing without some basic knowledge of the previous two Godzilla movies. It is a mixture of basic, confusing and sadly, predictable, with some major plot points.
A big film like this isn’t trying to pull you in with its story or acting though–it’s about the action. So, how is the action? It’s actually pretty good. Action scenes are pretty fun throughout, as seeing these two characters square off is pretty enjoyable and the fight animations look great and well-choreographed. While the plot bored me at some points, the action pulled me back in (at least for some moments).
After watching this film, it reminded me of “Kong: Skull Island” for some reason–in a good way–which makes sense, since “Godzilla vs. King Kong” is technically a sequel to it. There are some painfully slow plot points mixed with some great action, yet terrible dialogue, plus acting that seemed phoned in and a predictable story. So, with all these problems, would I recommend “Godzilla Vs. Kong”? Yeah, I think I would. Maybe not if you’re looking for something amazing to watch, but if you’re bored and want to watch something kind of mindless for a while, then I think it fits the bill well. I am giving “Godzilla Vs. Kong” a 2 out of 5 Stars.