Film: Godzilla:The King Of The Monsters Director - Michael Dougherty Cast- Kyle Chandler, Vera Farmiga, Millie Brown, Ken Watanabe, Ziyi Zhang Rating:***(3/5)
Right from the start, Godzilla: King of the Monsters makes it clear that it is not going to be another hide-the-monsters exercise like its predecessor, 2014’s Godzilla. The plot involves an eco-terrorist (Charles Dance) kidnapping Dr. Emma Russell (Vera Farmiga) and her daughter (Millie Bobby Brown) in order to procure a device that can essentially talk to the various “titans” that are either still in hiding or being kept at bay in government facilities. After the initial kidnapping/heist (one of two unnecessary machine gun massacres in this otherwise kid-friendly flick), Monarch calls in Emma’s estranged Mark Russell (Kyle Chandler) to help with the search, and the chase is on.
The message is clear: This Godzilla movie is going to be wall to wall with the monsters, contemplatives be damned.Co-written and directed by Michael Dougherty, who has also helmed the spook-fests Trick ‘r Treat and Krampus, Godzilla: King of the Monsters stars Kyle Chandler, Vera Farmiga and Millie Bobby Brown as a splintered family that gets swept up in the drama when a new array of giant monsters begins to appear around the world.
with Chandler’s character spending most of his screen time stressed out, Brown’s crying more often than not, and Farmiga’s well, let’s just say her character’s motivations are confusing at best and ridiculous at worst.
As for Godzilla, as we saw at the end of the 2014 film, he is firmly planted on the side of good, ready to battle these creatures alongside humanity even if his motivation seems to be more as a simple force of nature rather than specifically as mankind’s BGFF (Best Giant Friend Forever).
King of the Monsters pays off in that regard time and again, including an explosive, extended final battle royal between all the monsters. But the film also finds it in its monstrous heart to provide some fairly… dare we say it… contemplative bits as well. Ken Watanabe, back from the first film as a Monarch scientist and ultimate Godzilla fanboy, gets a particularly beautiful moment.
Overall my take for the movie is indeed, the movie manages to also pay homage to the Godzilla films of yesteryear with lots of little nerdy Easter eggs, however the film’s plot is needlessly confusing, and not all that smart at times, and the lead characters could’ve used a little more fleshing out.
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