King Kong Skull Island represents Warner Brother’s second release in a series of interconnected films leading to the ultimate showdown between Kong and Godzilla. It is an attempt to Marvel-ize or expand its movie monster universe.
The film takes place in the early seventies, at the close of the Vietnam War. The war maybe over, but America’s national security is still a top priority. Through satellite imaging, a government organization christened Monarch, has discovered an uncharted location called Skull Island. Since they really don’t want the Russians to lay claim to the mystery island, Monarch sets up an expedition; under the guise of a geological survey mission. Of course, the mission goes south and the team must fight for their very lives from Kong and all the other deadly creatures of Skull Island.
Kong Skull Island is an action packed feast for the eyes/ popcorn movie and is definitely made to be seen on the big screen. Tom Hiddleston proves that he is no second fiddle to Thor and can be a convincing leading man. Samuel L Jackson & John Goodman are solid, as usual and Brie Larson is no slouch as the expedition’s photographer. But the most pleasant surprise in Skull Island is, John C Reilly. He plays the stranded WWII pilot and is a real scene stealer. With all this said, however, the real stars of the film are Kong and the evil creatures that inhabit the island. They all look breathtakingly real.
Now, as much as I liked the film, there were some minor flaws. First, I thought that the audience got to see Kong way too early in film. This took away the WOW factor in my opinion. I preferred the slow reveal approach from 2014’s Godzilla. Second, as much as this is a monster film, the talented cast isn’t given enough time to really bring out their characters. Last, but not least, director Jordan Vogt Roberts, along with the writers (Dan Gilroy, Max Borenstein) seem to try a little too hard to reference Francis Ford Coppola‘s: Apocalypse Now.
Even with these minor flaws, however, Kong Skull Island is pure escapism where you sit, watch and engorge yourself with popcorn and soda. So, if you like Kong or monster movies in general, King Kong Skull Island is a fun-ride that will keep you amused.