The two title monsters Godzilla vs. Kong don’t have much brains between them, but they make up for it in brawn. Same goes for the movie that pits them against each other.
Enticing as an epic slugfest between two of cinema’s most famous demolition experts may sound, there’s really no way to pretend that King of the Monsters and once-and-future-king Kong are evenly matched. A radiation-powered freak of nature.
These two aren’t even suppose to be the same size, although the movie presents them as such — but then, scale has rarely been a sticking point in a series that once saw a man in a rubber suit stomping through shoulder-high power lines.
The way director Adam Wingard (“You’re Next”) figures it, if you have time to think about such things during “Godzilla vs. Kong,” he’s not doing his job correctly.
Meanwhile, the human ensemble is made up mostly of conspiracy quacks and pseudo-science hacks, which may resonate in a world spun by QAnon-sense. Still, it’s a relief when their virtual co-stars’ thunderous roars drown out the mumbo-jumbo dialogue. Eyes wide, brains off, ears bleeding — that’s how Wingard wants his audience.
The box office (or lack thereof) should make apparent just how drastically the pandemic has hobbled the tentpole business, since this franchise capper. Which pays off elements established across three previous films.
From the filmmakers’ point of view, the idea is to get Kong out on the open ocean. Chain to a heavily armed carrier, so that he and Godzilla vs. Kong can ring in their first round. In this setting, the helmer has 360-degree access to his combatants, who obediently pose for his dynamic virtual cameras. If “Cloverfield” was the shaky, mock-doc answer to a kaiju movie.
This they do in a Zack Snyder-esque suspended-animation way,