This may be a weird opinion, one that most people I know won’t have thought much about, but I think Kong: Skull Island is the best movie of Warner Bros Monsterverse. Why weird? I hear you ask? Well, because the three movies that make up the Monsterverse – Garth Edwards’ better-than-you-think-but-only-barely Godzilla movie, the aforementioned Skull Island, and Godzilla: King of the Monsters – don’t care that much about the kind of connective tissue that can jar a lot of shared universe movies. Neither Godzilla movie cares that much about Kong, and Skull Island doesn’t care about Godzilla. I find this refreshing, and appreciate that the quality of these movies (however patchy) rely on their own content rather than on the promise of what it one day could be. What I’m saying is that Mothra didn’t get any emails about Kong and that’s the way it should be.
Which brings us to the ultimate Hollywood monster title fight. The Alien vs Predator, or the Freddie vs Jason of this generation. The Batman vs Superman that actually makes sense. Let’s get one thing clear: you don’t need to have a complicated reason for these two to fight. Kong won’t start the movie helplessly on the ground clutching a weeping child in his grizzly arms as Godzilla or Rodan (or one of these other fuckers who can fly) destroy Skull Island. You don’t need a Lex Luthor-type manipulating things. Godzilla is supposed to be King of the Monsters, but as Rebecca Hall (who looks like Ken Watanabe-esque exposition character for Kong) says, Kong won’t kneel. That’s it. LET THEM FIGHT!
If Dune is the prestige blockbuster tragedy of this year, I.e. a movie best seen in the cinema but one that will probably land on streaming service thanks to the global pandemic, Godzilla vs Kong is the silly blockbuster tragedy. I think this movie looks awesome, even the silly song soundtracking this trailer got me pumped. It needs to be seen on as big a screen as possible, and it probably will, but I would ask you all not to get baited by it. I desperately want to see this mess in the cinema, but I’m currently on tier 4 lockdown because some people in my country decided to say screw the rules, let’s have Christmas, and I am going to fight you if you make it happen again because of a fucking Adam Wingard movie. A movie, unless you are guaranteed that it’s safe to go to, is not worth the risk.
It’s a sacrifice so trivial that it shouldn’t be that hard to make. So, lets enjoy these two behemoths smack the tar out of each other. Let’s once again enjoy Kyle Chandler’s “I’m always angry” style of performance. And let’s once again complain about the rubbish human characters played by brilliant human actors doing their best shocked face. And let’s do it bloody safely, for goodness’ sake. A blockbuster tragedy this may be, but, if even the trailer can look this good on the small screen, I have every confidence that it will survive anyway.
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By Kevin Boyle
(header image via Variety)