Godzilla: King of the Monsters

The world’s most infamous reptile is back for round two as team Monarch tags him in. 

Monarch in this case is a crypto-zoological organisation with the same logo as Extinction Rebellion, comprising Sally Hawkins (because she loves a hybrid), Bradley Whitford (in case they need anything mainsplained to White House staffers) and Ken Watanabe (to make a fortune cookie joke and then save the white people). Charles Dance goes all Game of Thrones and wakes up the reptilian hellbeast cast of the Tory leadership contest, including Ghidora, Rodan, Mothra and Mike Wazowski. It’s up to Kyle Chandler to activate full-time human protector Godzilla, making this the worst Friday Night Lights/monster attack crossover since Battleship.

“Lazer eyes, fire breath, can’t lose.”

Epic in scale but low in ambition (unless its ambition was to make Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom look good by comparison), this ugly, senseless sequel sets out to deliver nothing but giant monster fights and doesn’t even get that right, so murky and messy is the visual quality. Most of its 2+ hour running time is spent sat on a submarine with boring people shouting nonsensical exposition at each other while we wait for Godzilla to fight Ghidora (or settle it by saying Mothra to each other like in Batman v Superman).

This reboot project has a habit of swallowing up promising directors, with 2014’s Godzilla chewing out Gareth Edwards (Monsters) and this one Michael Dougherty (Krampus), both of whom have failed to get the series’ feet off the ground. Throw in all the nasty CGI you like but without a decent character you can’t create humour or emotion, and frankly can’t even compete with the Roland Emmerich version, let alone the original Japanese version. That film was a warning against nuclear armageddon. This will make you beg for one.

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