Saturday, March 18, 2017

Kong: Skull Island (2017) - All Hail The King


Kong: Skull Island (2017) is that kind of film where you know what you're in store for, as soon as you take your seat. The opening gross of this feature proved that monster movies are far from dead. And that's not a bad thing.

The following review contains spoilers.


The Plot: Scientists escorted by military personnel, travel to an undiscovered island, where they have to survive in the midst of Kong and other creatures.

The Good: The visuals are too good. This is the best CGI I've seen this year yet. Definitely worth watching in the theater and especially in IMAX. The second-best aspect is undoubtedly the sound effects. Not only is watching the gigantic gorilla enough, but combined with stunning audio, hear the king roar!

We get a sneak peek of Kong early on unlike 2014's Godzilla. It's set in the backdrop of a fight between Japan and America. Setting this movie in war and post-war eras was smart. This showcased that even during man versus man the greatest obstacle is animals.

The action is spectacular. Whether it be Kong brushing away helicopters like flies, or fighting off the "Skullwalkers", the sequences are meant to kickstart adrenaline.

This movie is never boring and perfectly paced. Each scene has its own visual beauty. The cinematography is one of this century's best. And you won't find a better looking monster movie anytime soon. Consider the scenes of the main team entering the island's airspace. The lighting-filled hurricanes top most of the VFX incorporated in disaster movies. And all the creatures were designed immaculately; inspiring awe and fear at the exact same time.

The Bad: Kong is not without its flaws. The ensemble isn't lacking but the characterization sure falls short. Our protagonist is a generic decommissioned special agent, and the heroine is an idealistic anti-war photographer. Tom Hiddleston and Brie Larson are wasted in such limited roles.

Yet Samuel L. Jackson and John C. Reilly manage to stand out. Though Jackson's obsession with killing Kong and Reilly's survival story, seem far-fetched they still make for the most intriguing subplots for a storyline that is heavily clich├ęd.

And some parts, such as the introduction of multiple carnivorous creatures showcased through jump scares, were painfully predictable. The ultimate showdown between Kong and the biggest Skullwalker works as a redeemable effort.

The Verdict: Kong: Skull Island is the best monster movie in decades. It's visually pleasing and keeps you at the edge of your seat throughout the 118 minutes duration. Plus it makes the most of Jackson's screentime, and as an action fan, you couldn't ask for more.

The Rating: 3 out of 4.

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