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Godzilla X Kong” Disappoints

courtesy of legendary pictures
courtesy of legendary pictures

“Godzilla x Kong: the New Empire” is the fifth installment in Legendary Pictures’ “monsterverse.” Coming out on March 29, 2024, it centers largely around King Kong looking for others like him in his home world of hollow Earth, which was established in previous movies. However, while looking for his kind, King Kong unleashes an evil giant ape known as Scar King who has an ancient titan named Shimo under his control with the use of a magic crystal. While this is going on, Godzilla has been traveling the world collecting radiation in order to get stronger. King Kong goes to the surface in order to enlist the help of Godzilla to stop Scar King and Shimo. At first they fight, due to the events of 2021’s “Godzilla vs. Kong” however they eventually get along and team up to fight Scar King and Shimo. At the end of the movie Godzilla and Kong fight Scar King and Shimo, Scar King’s crystal breaks, and all three turn against him and beat him. There are also human characters but they play a very small role and do nothing of importance other than give King Kong a mechanical arm. If the synopsis wasn’t enough to make you not want to watch this movie, hopefully this review will keep you away from it. 

First, and the worst aspect of the movie, the human characters. They contribute nothing but lulls to the movie. They have some sort of side quest having to do with some ancient civilization and a giant moth, which seems interesting, and maybe it would have been with anyone else, but with these characters it was a struggle to stay awake. The human characters have always been a problem with these monster movies, as they will never be as interesting as a giant monkey and/or lizard, but this film was the worst offender. I usually have some interest in the human characters and root for them to make it out, but in this film, I couldn’t care less about them. One character in particular really gets under my skin and that character’s name is Trapper, played by Dan Stevens. The movie tried so hard to make this character seem cool by having him constantly quipping and attempting one-liners, but that just results in making the movie that much harder to watch. 

The action, while certainly interesting at times, falls into the same problem that many of these types of movies fall into, which is a loss of any sense of scale. By having multiple giant monsters fight each other in some fantasy world, you lose the whole appeal of monster films. 2014’s “Godzilla” handles size reference really well by having you see the monsters from the ground and focusing on the devastation left in their wake. If you have no reference, then you might as well watch a regular sized lizard and monkey fight. The final fight fixes this to some extent by placing them in a city, but at the same time, you don’t really see much destruction and the monsters move too fast to believe that they are actually massive. 

The music fails to leave any real impact, which is really a shame because Godzilla has historically had some of the most memorable scores of any film. Even Toho’s 2023 film “Godzilla Minus One” had a beautifully menacing score which really made you feel the danger that Godzilla poses to the characters that the film actually made you care about while also paying homage to past scores in the Godzilla franchise. In “Godzilla x Kong” however, the score feels like any generic action movie. 

Ultimately, this film is very bad. The action between the monsters is bland and lacks any sort of weight, the score is boring, and human characters are downright unbearable. Usually I would give a movie like this the benefit of a “turn your brain off and enjoy it” sort of a flick, but that would be too high of praise for this insult to cinema. The fact that this film has a 91% on Rotten Tomatoes is inexplicable to me. If you want to watch a good Monster Movie, I recommend “Godzilla Minus One” which perfectly encapsulates everything a Godzilla movie should be. 

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About the Contributor
Spencer Pfaff
Spencer Pfaff, Reporter
Spencer Pfaff is a junior at Rockbridge County High School. This is his first year writing for the Prowler. He is an accomplished swimmer, placing sixth and seventh at the Virginia Class 3 State Championship meet in both the 50 and 100 freestyle. He achieved all-district third team in the 50 freestyle. Pfaff is also on the academic team and involved in Model UN. He is also a member of the National Honor Society. During his freetime, Pfaff enjoys watching TV, of which his favorite shows are “The Office”, “Breaking Bad”, and “Arrested Development”. His favorite subject in school is History, so he is currently taking AP US history. 

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  • AnonymousMay 11, 2024 at 5:12 am

    The main story is about skar & kong meeting and ending ancient rivalry and how kong becomes king of hollow earth. Did you even pay attention? People only exhist to help tell the story. SMH. I guess you gotta be a fan to understand, why watch if youre not truelly interested in these famous legend monsters.

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  • AnonymousMay 9, 2024 at 1:46 pm

    I agree with this 100%. There is no one in this movie that you care about or connect with. This is everything bad about today’s movie. A bland story that doesn’t make you think, or care. At least it can’t offend anyone, maybe that’s the point.

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