Martens' Movie Reviews

Movie Reviews from an avid movie-goer

Kong: Skull Island Review

Released: March 10, 2017
Running Time: 1 hour 58 minutes

Kong: Skull Island was based on the story of John Gatins, with the screenplay written by Dan GilroyMax Borenstein, and Derek Connolly. It was directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts, whose previous full length film was a small indie movie called The Kings of Summer.

This film featured many great actors and most are also part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. There was Tom Hiddleston as James Conrad, Samuel L. Jackson as Preston Packard, Brie Larson as Mason Weaver, John C. Reilly as Hank Marlow, John Goodman as Bill Randa, Corey Hawkins as Houston Brooks, John Ortiz as Victor Nieves, Tian Jing as San, and Toby Kebbell as Jack Chapman and also the motion capture for Kong.

“A washed up monster chaser convinces the U.S. Government to fund a trip to an unexplored island in the South Pacific. Under the guise of geological research, the team travels to “Skull Island”. Upon arrival, the group discover that their mission may be complicated by the wildlife which inhabits the island.”

This movie featured the Monarch company which was previously a big part of the Godzilla (2014) movie, tying this movie with that one. This movie is part of the universe that Legendary Pictures and Warner Brothers are planning, that will include Godzilla, Kong and other iconic giant monsters.

The cinematography in this movie was really beautiful. The movie didn’t feel blurred or out of focus, but clear and breath-taking in some moments. The music in this movie, both the cinematic score and the soundtrack selection was well placed, and fit the tone of the movie.

They showed action shots of Kong, and weren’t afraid of showing him. The CGI for Kong was really well done, and he felt real. The actors did a good job with what they were given, though in some cases they weren’t given much. The movie took some of the complaints of the Godzilla movie, and listened in fixing them.  I enjoyed that they wanted to make this a more serious take on the Kong lore, and didn’t end up doing the Kong on the Empire State building story.

The humour in this movie, as well as the realism of the characters worked really well, and elevated this movie higher than I originally thought it would be before going to see this movie. The Skull – Crawlers were properly scary creatures, and were great ‘villains’ to use against Kong, alongside the humans.

Some of the characters that were focused on, served no real purpose in the advancement of the plot, and could have been cut altogether. The story of the movie was also not one of the strong points of the movie. The movie felt long in some moments, and with the cutting of some of the points that I make in the spoilers section, the movie could have taken off roughly 10-15 minutes of this movie, and it would have been a more concise and better film in my opinion.

You can scroll down to where it says “Spoilers Are Done!!” to skip the Spoiler Section, and you can come back and read the Spoiler Section once you have seen the movie.

Spoilers Ahead!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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John C. Reilly’s character was both really funny, yet serious, his character having been on the island for roughly 30 years and having survived with the help of the Indigenous people on the island was great to see him return home after all those years. Kongs’s battles from the first one when he is just demolishing the humans that are coming to his island and blowing stuff up, and waking up the Skull – Crawlers to the battle with the Giant Octopus to the final battle with the humans and the Big Skull – Crawler.

They were all magnificent to watch and the reason why I wanted to see it on the big screen, I was not disappointed with those scenes whatsoever. I both loved and hated Jackson’s character, with being a warmongering veteran, and not wanting to return home, feeling as if he belongs at war. It was well developed and brought a sense of realism to the movie about a Giant Ape fighting 2 legged weird looking Giant Lizards?

The bad moments in the movie for me was for the most part, some of the characters, or the forced narratives of some characters. Kebbell’s character Chapman, could have been cut out of the movie completely and the nothing would have been loss other than a nice performance by the actor. There was nothing wrong with Kebbell’s performance, just that the character itself served little to no purpose, and could have easily been replaced by a random grunt.

The forced backstory for Hiddleston’s character felt like it was added to make the character seem relatable or to have a past, however in the context of the movie, it served no purpose, and just added an extra scene that could have been on the editing floor.

If the negative points that I make above would have had more of a relevance to the story and to moving the plot forward, I would have no problem with them being in the movie.


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Spoilers Are Done!!

Overall, I watched this movie in the hopes that it would be better than the Godzilla movie, and bring life to the possibility of the two of them in a movie down the line, and the movie did deliver on those hopes, fixing many of the problems that Godzilla had, while still having flaws.

I wanted to see Kong fighting monsters, and I got exactly that. I didn’t enjoy most of the human elements in the movie, but they served a purpose (for the most part) in the movie. In the end, I would end up giving this movie a score of 7.25/10.

What are your thoughts on the universe that they are trying to create? Do you think that it’s a good idea? Are you excited for the next movies in the franchise? What do you hope to see from this franchise?

What did you think of the movie? Movies are very subjective, and some people will disagree with me. I would love to hear those opinion either way. What would you have graded it? What was your favourite part of the movie? Let me know in the comments, I would love to hear from you!! What movie should I review next?

Thank you very much for taking the time to read this review, I hope you enjoyed the movie!

Alex

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