I’m not sure how I missed Godzilla: King of the Monsters at the cinema; but it was a clear oversight on my part. The hype around Godzilla vs Kong reminded me to finally watch it. I do recall there being a lot of chat about ‘not enough Monsters’ at release. I calibrated my expectations and was pleasantly surprised.
We all like a bit of bombast. In some of the best films, the action serves the story. But think about it; we’re usually dealing with humans, who can clearly emote and explain what their deal is. When you’ve got 100m tall creatures, that’s a bit trickier. So you need humans to fill in the gaps between the big oohs and aahs. At the core of ‘KotM’ we have a family drama. It’s serviceable, ties in with the Titans, and contains all the longing glances and sacrifices for the greater good that it needs.
I do like the continuing use of Monarch as a backbone to these films. In addition to bringing back Ken Watanabe, they’ve added Bradley Whitford, or “Peralta’s Dad” as my wife referred to him. There’s plenty of gravitas and laughs for you right there. Normal soldiers are given screen time too, so we do notice when they meet unfortunate ends.
So it’s all pretty good so far. But this is a MonsterVerse movie, so we all know that we’re ultimately here to see Godzilla lay the smackdown on some other monsters. And yes we do! The distinct designs make for some cool visuals, and as a lover of lore I’m keen to learn more about them all. My very basic level of knowledge regarding the monsters left me excited to discover each new creature.
Each film in the ‘MonsterVerse’ has had strong visuals, from a HALO jump straight past Godzilla mid fight, to a backlit Kong squaring up to some helicopters. ‘KotM’ keeps up that strong pattern, with the confrontations between Godzilla and Ghidorah particularly cool looking. Seeing creatures so large booking it at each other could look silly; here it looks epic.
Looking back over my reviews of this series, you could say I’m a fan. I’m fully onboard to see more, with all three films delivering. Getting bogged down in the human stories is one approach, but I think doing so misses the point. Take what you can from it, and then enjoy some bloody good monster action. For me, KoTM is the best of the bunch.