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Godzilla x Kong The New Empire Review: A Popcorn Movie Done Right?

Legendry Studios
Legendry Studios promotional material.

Godzilla x Kong The Empire released on March 29th may be the best example of a “harmless popcorn” movie. As anyone could’ve seen from its advertisement this movie was not trying to be anything profound like something like Godzilla Minus One or Oppenheimer.   

As was obvious from the marketing of this film, it set out to simply be an entertaining film with no deep meaning or hidden political messaging behind it. My praise of this film for its marketing and harmlessness may seem a bit strange, however comparing this film to other modern popcorn films like practically all the new Marvel products which suffer from their heavily forced comedy and lazy messaging.  

Comparing Godzilla x Kong to another popcorn film like Kung Fu Panda 4 which not only is a bad film that collapses under the weight of its own unremarkable nature and actively stains the legacy of the greatness that came before.  

Godzilla x Kong however does not suffer from forced messaging or stain the legacy of what came before, as Godzilla films have always been experimental and inconsistent so the existence of Godzilla x Kong does not take away from the master piece that is Godzilla Minus One or Godzilla (1954), in the same way that Kung Fu Panda 4 stains the first 3 fairly consistent films.  

This does not change the fact that Godzilla x Kong is an amazingly bad film with all its aspects pertaining to the human characters and plot being spectacularly bad.   

While this is the 5th film in the “Monsterverse” franchise starting back in 2014 with “Godzilla,” the human characters have always been the weakest part of these movies but in comparison to past projects like Godzilla (2014) and Godzilla King of The Monsters, the humans in Godzilla x Kong are especially forgettable and bad. The comedy of this film, while not always bad with the humans, is mostly rather cringy in most parts.   

However, no one is coming to this film for the human characters, we’re going for the monsters. This is where the film truly excels as the main character of this movie is not a human, but rather Kong himself, similar to how Kong was the main character in Godzilla vs Kong. This dynamic serves the movie excellently as it allows for large portions of the movie to be dedicated to the reason that people come to these movies without it feeling like too much.   

The action in this movie is probably the best we’ve gotten so far in the monster verse as it abandons the few realistic and slow aspects of the previous films in favor of faster and more choreographed action. This can be seen especially well through Godzilla and King Kong literally air-juggling the film’s main villain, the Scar King.   

Speaking of the Scar King my expectations were not very high for this film’s main antagonist considering I couldn’t see him being stronger than Kong or especially Godzilla. However, I was very pleasantly surprised that instead of making Scar King overpowered they just made him a devious and deceitful fighter who’s not the strongest but uses tactics and intelligence to fight his opponents. A very clever and interesting way to implement your film’s main villain for sure.   

To summarize, while I normally would not recommend a film such as this due to its severe lack of depth and artistic merit, I just can’t deny that I had a great time with this harmless film. There’s nothing dishonest or harmful about this movie so if you’re looking for a good time at the movies, especially with friends, I would highly recommend this perfect example of a popcorn film.  

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About the Contributor
KEEGAN CUNNINGHAM, Entertainment and Trends Editor
Hello everyone I am Junior Keegan Cunningham and this is my 3rd year of CJAM and my 6th year of Journalism all starting back at John Hopkins Middle School. Journalism has been my favorite subject for quite some time now and I am very happy to finally be the entertainment editor this year!I love everything movies, shows and games and can’t wait to see what great entertainment stories are going to come out of Lakewood this year.
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