REVIEW| Who’s the King of the Jungle – Kong: Skull Island

Written by Talha Javaid

 

The highly anticipated 2nd film in the famous Legendary Picture’s ‘MonsterVerse’ franchise positions a giant monkey against American soldiers and other monsters. Generation Z explores the highs and lows of Skull Island.

 

The movie built a high expectation with great actors such as John Goodman, Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, and Brie Larson all taking part in a survey expedition ironically on the island. The build-up alone lasts roughly about 20 minutes and leaves you wanting to bash your own skull. The movie in my opinion doesn’t deliver the suspense it created through the trailer.

Of course, when the humans get to the Island, things take a turn for worse, something that has become very predictable in monster movies. Of course they have to work together and their survivor’s skills are put to a test, ironically no one really cares about the human characters as they are more interested in the creatures that inhabit the island.

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Why would anyone care about the characters, right? They are just mere pawns to get the narrative flowing from the safe place to a dangerous island. Goodman portrays the over energised explorer cliché; Jackson takes the role of the aggressive ruthless military male. Hiddleston plays the unknown stranger, whereas Larson takes the role of the strong, fierce and independent woman. All clichés, all cheesy but necessary in a monster movie.

There is no space for the characters to develop, and it’s clear that there was no direction for character growth, all in all, you could say the actors were doing their jobs, playing roles without really emerging with their characters as though this was just about the pay cheque.

Their performances were less than mediocre and unbelievable; they weren’t convincing enough.

The movie itself is largely out of sequence and all over the place. The characters use the most of the movie to remain in the same area without really adding anything to the plot. After the monster Gorilla splits the team up on the opposite side of Islands, by beating down their helicopter, the whole narrative structure revolves around the character and has to grow around them. But again it’s done so distastefully, with overloading of scenes with useless side plots, idiotic script and more side characters which are either less integral or more well developed than the actual protagonists of the film, and share the similar screen time as them.

Kong fails the criteria of a good film which entails, plot, performance and substance, there is still something there which makes it somewhat fun. The soundtrack is layered with beautiful seventies rock anthem, adding to the atmosphere especially when Kong throws down, truly magnificent. The cinematography of the film is effectively glorious and which shows that the whole other aspects prevent it from it being a great film.

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However, there is a sense of satisfaction when Kong’s body blocks out the sun and likewise Jackson’s first clenched tyrant hints at a mind-blowing parallel between the beast and the man, but again that is something the movie is too lazy to highlight.

Though you can somewhat overlook the overly stupid action scenes, most impeccable action movies do have stupid action scenes, but Skull Island isn’t forgivable because even stupidity has its limits. The characters die in the dullest fashion, and you’d think the actors wanted them to be killed off just to finish their part in the film.

It was definitely too violent for a 12 rated movie, and some of the deaths are incredibly stupid and outrageous as they happen. How often is it that a spider leg impales a man? It’s just ridiculous, just like this miserable movie.

 

Generation Z’s final words – don’t waste money in going to see this movie. Although it’s fun to see a supersized Kong Gorilla on a supersized screen, it’s definitely not worth the money. We give it a solid 2 out of 10, because it truly tarnishes the legacy left behind by its predecessors.

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