Godzilla vs. Kong (2021)

Godzilla vs. Kong (2021) Cover

Big monsters smashing each other’s faces in; that’s what you’re signing up for when you watch Godzilla vs. Kong and it’s not really worth it. I do not mind “fun” turn-your-brain-off movies if the premise itself is relatable, clever, intriguing, comical, or thrilling. Unfortunately, Godzilla vs. Kong has 20-ish minutes of stunning action-packed visual effects and that’s about all it offers. If those scenes sound exciting to you be prepared to sit through an uncreative bland story and hollow stock characters.

Dr. Nathan Lind (Alexander Skarsgård) seeks out Kong via anthropological linguist Dr. Ilene Andrews (Rebecca Hall) in order to have Kong “as an ally and not as a weapon” as the fate of the world is being threatened by Godzilla. Madison Russell (Millie Bobby Brown), Josh Valentine (Julian Dennison), and Bernie Hayes (Brian Tyree Henry) believe there’s a reason for Godzilla's behavior and seek to investigate the APEX company, which may have a tie to Godzilla’s behavior. 

Two Monsters. Three people looking after Kong. Three people investigating a proverbial corrupt company. There’s very little connectedness amongst the characters in the film and the film lacks any emotional stakes. I did not care if a single one of the lead characters was killed off. A flm can be big and action packed but it fails to keep the audience hooked if there’s not a character we can root for. Ilene Andrews (who described her filming experience to be rough as it was her first film after her pregnancy) had one nice characteristic of being hesitant to allow use of Kong- some may relate to her character in the same way they may not want their pet to be involved in anything corrupt. Her character and her daughter who communicates with Kong via sign language were the few admirable human characters but those scenes are so brief it is not enough to make a huge dent in the bloated story.

The visual effects is the single most praiseworthy factor of the film (no shocker considering our two titans leading the film poster are both CGI created). Whoever was in charge of animating the titular characters, integrating them into the world, and predicting how jumping across and on buildings looks had a very big challenge. Needless to say, the rendering is impressive to watch.

While it is not nearly as unbearable as the 2 hour and 11 minute predecessor Godzilla: King of the Monsters, the 1 hour and 53 minute film still feels a bit of a chore to sit through due to how unengaging so much of the content is. If all you want is giant action and the bare bones story that gets us to that point is not a deal breaker you may have more fun with Godzilla vs. Kong than I did. For those that require compelling characters or relatable circumstances, steer clear of this film.

Final Verdict:Big monsters smashing each other’s faces in; that’s what you’re signing up for when you watch Godzilla vs. Kong and it’s not really worth it.