In the end, humanity was the real monster.
Godzilla: King of the Monsters (“King of the Monsters”) is the sequel to the 2014 film, Godzilla, which re-introduced the monstrous creature to the world. Having not seen the first film, this review will be based on the sequel as a stand-alone film.
King of the Monsters takes place a few years after the events of the first film, in which Monarch, a crypto-zoological organisation are tasked with eliminating the threat that is the gigantic creatures known as titans, including Mothra, Rodan, King Ghidorah and Godzilla himself, all of whom battle for supremacy, leaving destruction in their wake and humanity’s existence hanging in the balance.
Though initially seeking to put an end to the monsters, including Godzilla, mankind, through the help of Dr. Mark Russell (Kyle Chandler), Madison Russell (Millie Bobby Brown), and the rest of the team at Monarch, realise that Godzilla is a different kind of monster compared to the likes of the menacing King Ghidorah, who seeks to reign over the world. Putting their faith in Godzilla’s hands, they turn to the giant monster as their saviour, only to also learn that it was humanity that caused the rise of the monsters and the subsequent threat against the world in the first place.
Compared to the likes of Kong: Skull Island and from what I’ve been told, the previous Godzilla film, whose narrative was more focused on the human characters, King of the Monsters was a monster fest of a film, with barely any real character driven story. This wasn’t a film that involved character development or backstory; no, this film was reserved as a monster battle of the ages.
Though there were humans involved to help drive the film, very little time was spent on each of the characters, making it difficult to truly feel any connection with them. Having the plot threaten mankind’s extinction made their plight more urgent, but still didn’t quite feel as dire as opposed to if audiences were able to feel kinship with the characters.
As mentioned above, King of the Monsters was more a monster film, pitting the giant titans against each other. As someone who prefers a narrative driven film and one with some emotional connection, I wasn’t a fan of the epic monster battles but I do recognise the impact this would have on audiences. The enormous creatures were huge and were graphically so well done that they looked exceptionally realistic. The way in which the battles were choreographed were also impressive that no doubt monster fans watching would be in awe.
Visually the film was well done. The CGI effects were unlike any other monster films of the past, with Godzilla, Mothra, Rodan and King Ghidorah all looking terrifying and ginormous, while looking like creatures that naturally exist within our world. The visual effects depicting Godzilla’s powerful blasts and that of King Ghidorah’s multiple heads were stunning, as were the depiction of the devastating destruction of the world.
Without giving too much away, King of the Monsters was an interesting film to say the least. Though not my preferred type of film, and one that I personally wasn’t a fan of, it is certainly a film that I foresee several fans of Godzilla, titans and monsters in general enjoy thoroughly. If for nothing else, the epic battle scenes are a feat to watch.