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Godzilla X Kong The New Empire: An in-depth spoiler review of (nearly) everything


“Rise Together or Fall Alone”

That is the tagline for the newest Godzilla and King Kong film and the 5th in the Monsterverse, Godzilla X Kong The New Empire. Ever since filming started back on March 20th of 2022, fans of the series were intrigued and hyped by what this film would have to offer, which grew even more after the first trailer was released on December 3rd of last year. Now, around 4 weeks after it released back in March, Many people have gone to see it, and the reviews seem to be mostly positive, with the film having grossed 519 million dollars at the worldwide box office at the time of writing this, its safe to say that the Monsterverse will continue, and Godzilla/Kong fans will be happy for that. I have already watched the film, so I am here to give a detailed review of the film and give my thoughts on it. Remember this is my opinion, so yours will be different from mine.

So, enter the Hollow Earth vortex, and let’s get started

Kong entering Hollow Earth vortex

Before we get into the characters and monsters, let’s first go over the plot, score, visuals, and, of course, the battles.

Plot: The plot is pretty simple to follow, and results in a relatively streamlined film. The story follows Kong as he explores more of the Hollow Earth to find more of his kind, which results in him finding a young ape named Suko. Unknown to Kong though, is the fact that his family search will lead him to the kingdom of the tyrannical Skar King, as well as the first Titan, an ice monster named Shimo, who is controlled by The Skar King using pain. After discovering this kingdom and unwittingly letting him break free of the fiery prison, He goes back to the surface world in an attempt to get Godzilla’s help, which he does thanks to Mothra. The two Alpha Titans then return to the Hollow Earth to try and defeat The Skar King once and for all and prevent him from reaching the surface world. It is a simple enough plot that results in a really fun and action-packed film, as well as having deeper themes about oppression and freedom.

Visuals: The visuals of the film can be quite bold and colorful as well as being quite beautiful, which, considering this film only had a 135 million dollar budget, could be surprising to some people who thought this film had a budget of more than 250-350 dollars. This film also has the most amount of monsters on screen in the MV, with 17+ monsters and creatures in it, so sometimes that smaller budget and high amount of CGI can show its weak points, though these are mostly minor and unseeable unless you look closely. Overall, the visuals are pretty amazing to see and admire.

Score: The score, to me at least, is probably one of the film’s biggest weaknesses. It ain’t bad per se, but it’s relatively unmemorable when compared to the scores of the other MV films, especially to KOTM’s fantastic score. The only two songs I like are “Threatening Survival” and “French Army”, and even then I don’t remember anything about them. One thing that is good about this, however, is the way the lyrical songs (which are not a part of the main score) are used to slide into scenes, like the one that happens when the Verticine’s attack The Skar King and his forces. Along with the regular soundtrack, there also is an official rap song for the film named “Beast Mode” which, just like the main score, is kinda bland. So in general, the main soundtrack is meh, the rap is just kinda..there, while the lyric songs in the film are great.

Battles: The main highlight of the film is the fights, and boy do these deliver. There are around a total of 8 fights in the film, all of which are entertaining to watch, though they do have a flaw, which is that they seem to happen way too quickly. Godzilla’s fights against Scylla in Rome and Tiamat in the Arctic are very fast-paced and end the same way in like 20 seconds. The same goes for Kong’s fights against the Drownviper, the Ape’s ambush with Suko, and The Skar King and Shimo, though they have more memorable moments, like Kong using Suko as a weapon and swinging him around. The most memorable fights are Godzilla and Kong’s brief fight in Egypt, the Hollow Earth anti-gravity fight, and the final battle in Rio De Janeiro. These also have some memorable moments, such as Godzilla doing a suplex on Kong or Kong throwing The Skar King to Godzilla and him batting him away with his tail back to Kong like a baseball. So overall, the battles, while a bit too short and quick, are nonetheless one of the BEST parts of the movie.

Godzilla and Kong VS Skar King and Shimo in the Hollow Earth

Now that these 4 have been taken care of, it’s time for the character and monster reviews, starting with the human characters, of which there are 4 that are of particular interest.

Jia: She is the best human character in this movie, as well as the rest of the MV as a whole. Her quiet personality from GVK is retained here, and her relationship with Ilene is very sweet, especially the ending where she chooses to stay with her instead of the other Hollow Earth Iwi’s. Her connection to Kong is also really sweet, though they don’t spend as much time together as they did in the last film. Adds some heart to the human side of the movie.

Dr. Ilene Andrews: She’s somewhat the same as she was back in GVK, though there are a few differences. Her relationship with Jia shows these differences, as she’s definitely more protective and attached to Jia than she was in the last film, and is more worried about her well-being as well. She’s a nice, nurturing character whose inclusion helps the film develop some softer and more quiet moments.

Trapper Beasley: Easily the funniest character here, Trapper was just a really fun guy to watch. He’s very energetic and fun-loving, and his bromance with Bernie was really funny to watch. Overall, just a really funny character that matches the tone of the film perfectly.

Bernie Hayes: He, like Ilene, is somewhat the same, though he doesn’t have as many differences as her. I don’t have anything to say about him, other than that his bromance with Trapper was really funny to watch, and like Trapper he adds a lot of energy into the film that matches it well.

Now with the humans out of the way, it is time to move on to the main stars of the film, the characters you go to the movie to see: the Titans. I will be covering a few of them, since there are just a bit too many monsters in the film to cover here, and most of them are background creatures.

Godzilla: He was cool to see in the film. His evolution is a neat idea, and I like the design a lot. The jagged bone white dorsal plates glowing a nice magenta-like pink color just works well on him, and his body proportions are a lot better looking on screen than they are on the figures when they were first leaked. He has a lot of awesome scenes in the movie, like when he jumps off of the Rock of Gibraltar, suplexes Kong in Egypt, charging towards The Skar King and Shimo with Kong running alongside him, and swimming through the air in zero gravity during the Hollow Earth battle. He truly lives up to the title of “King Of The Monsters” in this film.

Godzilla after his evolution

Kong: He is the best character out of all of them here, the true heart and soul of this film. The B.E.A.S.T Glove is a cool weapon for him and gives him a better chance against any threats he might come up against, though the best part about him is his story in the film. His constant hope for a family is touching, and it gets sad when something bad happens, like when he gets tricked by a Parrot Frog at the beginning of the film, or when he signs “I lost home” to Jia after his first battle with The Skar King and Shimo. But, unlike other versions of King Kong, his dream gets fulfilled at the end of the film, once he kills The Skar King and returns to the other Great Apes, he has a smile on his face as he looks down on them, and when he roars to indicate their freedom, they all roar back and cheer, which is a nice moment for a character who, in most media, ends up being alone for his entire life.

Kong with B.E.A.S.T Glove

Suko: He was quite a pleasant surprise for me. At first, I thought he was gonna be more of an annoying comic relief than an actual character, but surprisingly he wasn’t. He was more complex than I first assumed. He’s kinda tragic in a way, being born and raised in the hellish land that is the Great Ape prison, most likely being attacked and abused by The Skar King and his troops along with the other Apes and having the one Ape who took care of him be back kicked into a lava pit and burned to death by The Skar King. His relationship to Kong turning from a hostile and nervous one to a father-son one was really sweet to see, and he was a nice surprise to watch.

Suko’s first appearance

The Skar King: He is easily the best MV villain they’ve introduced so far. I just love how evil and un-remorseful he is, and his design is one that I grew to like a whole lot more once I watched the film. He’s also the most expressive villain we’ve had yet due to his simian nature, so that’s another thing that puts him above others like King Ghidorah or MechaGodzilla. His evil smiles and laughs are a highlight of the film, at least for me. His death is also pretty neat since he’s still alive while it happens. Overall, He’s an extremely good villain, even if he ain’t as large or powerful as the others.

The Skar King as he comes out of his throne room

Shimo: She is easily my favorite original MV Titan to be introduced. Her design is just awesome, her roars are cool, and her powers are like something you’d find in the older Showa Era films. She uses her Frost Bite Blast to freeze objects and entities to great effect in the film, with it being the reason why Kong gets his glove, and she also manages to temporarily freeze Godzilla and freezes The Skar King once his control over her is broken. Her story is also kinda sad, with her being a naturally peaceful and docile Titan, and then being forced to work for The Skar King through pain and suffering and making her do more violent things than she normally would do. I also really like how she acts like a giant puppy occasionally, like when she gets a chin scratch from Kong and she nuzzles against his arm for more. She’s just really cool and cute at the same time, making her a great addition to the Monsterverse.

Shimo with her chains

Mothra: She kinda feels like an afterthought here. She does play an important role in the movie, as the one who stops Godzilla from killing Kong during their fight in Egypt, but other than that she doesn’t do much else besides web three apes and fix a hole. Her role is not as great as it was in KOTM, where she did a whole lot more than here. So overall, she’s not as memorable as the other monsters in the film, which is kinda bad since this film has A LOT of monsters, so you kinda don’t want to be forgettable, which Mothra kinda is here.

Mothra after her rebirth

Great Apes: They are an interesting group in the film since they technically aren’t the same species as Kong, yet he becomes the new king over them at the end of the film. While most of them don’t do anything note-worthy, there are a few that do, such as Gnarled Finger, who was Suko’s caretaker and his death is the reason why Kong challenges The Skar King in the first place, and One-Eye, who was one of Skar’s top soldiers and then one who found out where the Iwi’s and the vortexes were. They’re a nice addition because they finally give Kong a family to be with at the end of the movie, which is a nice change of pace from most versions of Kong, who remain permanently alone until they die.

Great Apes with Kong and Suko in the middle

Scylla, Tiamat, and Drownviper: I’m lumping these three together because they share pretty much the same role, which is “Get murdered by Godzilla/Kong in a cool fight scene”. It was nice to see Scylla on screen again after her very brief appearance in KOTM, giving us a better look at her design and roars. Tiamat was very exciting to see, as she is the first Titan who originates from one of the MV graphic novels (Godzilla Dominion) to appear on screen in a movie, and it was cool to see her design translated from a drawing to a full CGI model. The Drownviper was a pretty interesting monster to see, and it had a pretty cool design, with the darkish blue top with fins and the bright yellow stripes going together nicely. The only bad thing about them is, as mentioned above, they both get killed rather too quickly by the two alpha Titans, and it feels like they could’ve put up more of a fight, especially Scylla. Other than that, their appearances here are very welcome.

So in conclusion, what did I think of the film overall? Well, I think the film was AMAZING, and easily one of the best films I’ve seen ever. It has great human characters, great monster characters, amazing visuals, and the battles are just plain awesome. Sure it has its flaws, but these are heavily outweighed by the great parts of it. It also has lots of heart too, with Ilene’s and Jia’s mother-daughter relationship being nice to see expanded on, and Kong and Suko’s father-son relationship is just really sweet. I HIGHLY  recommend watching it on the biggest screen possible. I know some people here who have seen it, so I know it’s getting traction, which is great to see. It’s a fun roller-coaster of a time, a great film to just shut down your brain, relax, and enjoy the chaos that is Godzilla X Kong The New Empire.



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