Shared cinematic universes are where it’s all at. Marvel and DC are at it. Universal are at it with their classic monsters. Even Hasbro are trying to figure it out.
So it’s hardly a surprise that Kong follows on from 2014’s Godzilla as Legendary build towards the two cinematic behemoths sharing the big screen. What is surprising is how much more I preferred Kong.
Kong: Skull Island is a straight up, unabashed monster movie. We see everything clearly and often. It’s not trying to keep the mystery up like it’s sometimes dull predecessor. If you want to watch creatures killing humans and each other in a film that feels like Jurassic Park mixed with Apocalypse Now then this is the film for you.
The humans are an entertaining bunch too. No one is looked into very deeply but conversations give us enough to suss them out. Whilst I thought Hiddleston came across very well in his hero role, it was John C. Reilly and Samuel L. Jackson who steal the show for me as very different soldiers. They add an intensity and levity that elevates the film as a whole.
Then there are the visuals! This film revels in the world it has created and invites you in. You see why Kong is how he is and how he interacts with the different inhabitants of the island. Kong looks great, but this is a land that time forgot and the chance is taken to show us a lot of other things; some beautiful and some horrifying.
A rip-roaringly film from start to finish, Kong: Skull Island is a proper blockbuster.
Note – Stay until the very end of the credits.