25 September 2023

Godzilla-King of the Monsters

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Reviewed by Victor Rebikoff.

Director: Michael Doherty, Legendary Entertainment and Warner Bros, M 131 Minutes.

It has been five years since monster-movie fans last saw Godzilla on cinema screens saving humanity but this time it’s the clash of titanic monsters including the three-headed serpent Ghidorah, the giant moth Mothra and the flying reptile Rodan.

In this sequel from director Michael Doherty (‘Krampus’), Monarch’s Zoological Centre is continuing its involvement with the experimentation of colossal creatures led by Monarch scientist Dr Emma Russell (Vera Farmiga –‘The Commuter’) specifically on the insect species Mothra-a subdued moth.

Contrary to the views of her estranged husband Mark Russell (Kyle Chandler –‘First Man’), a scientist assigned to the US military, Emma is determined to preserve these prehistoric creatures at the expense of human life.

Even after Emma and her daughter Maddison (Millie Bobby Brown -TV’s ‘Stranger Things’) are snatched by eco-terrorist Jonah Allen (Charles Dance –Euphoria’), Emma appears to have switched sides, supporting Allen’s objective in bringing back to life Ghidorah and Rodan.

The stage is now set for a climactic clash between the mega-monsters just as Emma and Mark face off against each other with their daughter Maddison caught in the middle of their personal confrontation.

Quite surprisingly it is Godzilla coming off second best in the first encounter between the super species, but with the help of human backers, Godzilla is radioactively rejuvenated to reign supreme against its rivals – until the next time!

Unlike the 2014 version, Doherty’s sequel has a complicated plot that attempts to connect both creature and human perspectives into an engaging storyline, only succeeding with some entertaining scenes involving the gigantic battles between Godzilla and the other species.

Despite the inclusion of such stars as Farmiga, Dance, Chandler and even Ken Watanabe (who appeared in the previous film), none of them really stand out in this Japanese inspired story presented by its production company Toho.

For many of its fans the star performers would have to be the CGI enhanced titans, particularly Godzilla, with the King of the Monsters returning next year in another monster mayhem to be titled ‘Godzilla Vs Kong’.

Vic’s Verdict: 2 ½ Stars

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