Ishirō Honda, the man behind the fictional Kaiju series was a visionary. In 1954 in a world before Computer and VFx, he generated special effects on the screen which needed a man with an imagination. It won’t be wrong to say that the franchise literally backed on his Imagination. But do we see the same vision in Godzilla vs Kong (2021)?
While we have relied heavily on Kaiju’s characters created by Ishirō Honda, a question always arrives on the table, “what is ‘your’ vision in it?” Does Godzilla vs Kong bring anything new? Let’s figure it out.
‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ Summary
The events take place 5 years after Godzilla defeated the three-headed kaiju monster named King Ghidorah. Kong is captivated inside an artificially created habitat on Skull Island. The facility is monitored by Ilene Andrews (Rebecca Hall). Her adopted daughter Jia, the last Iwi native talks to Kong through sign language because she is deaf. It is no less than a miracle that only Jia can control Kong’s anger.
On the other part of the narrative, Godzilla attacks Apex Cybernetics for reasons unknown. The facility is completely destroyed and Apex CEO Walter Simmons is inclined to take revenge. He hires a geologist, Dr. Nathan Lind (Alexander Skarsgård) to extract a power source called “life force” from the Hollow Earth. Walter is designing a new weapon against Godzilla and he wants to use the life force to power his weapon. (Lifeforce is the source of power for the Titans as well).
Walter provides aerial ships to withstand Gravitational Inversion of Hollow Earth but the path is a maze in itself. Nathan couldn’t locate the life source alone so he takes the help of Ilene Andrews with an offer to let Kong guide them through the Hollow Earth via an opening in the Antarctic.
While Nathan, Ilene, and Kong pursue their journey to Antarctica, a Titan conspiracy theorist named Bernie Hayes (Brian Tyree Henry) who work for the Apex, uncovers Apex secrets with the help of two teenagers, Madison (Millie Bobby Brown) and Josh. The trio also unveils the reason why Gozilla suddenly surfaced and attacked the Apex facility.
Why did Godzilla attack the Apex facility?
Bernie, Madison, and Josh find out that Apex has designed an ultimate robot-Godzilla or Mechagodzilla that is controlled telepathically through the neural networks from a severed head of Ghidorah. However, to power his destructive weapon, Walter needs the “life source” and that is the reason for the voyage to the Hollow Earth.
According to Madison, “Godzilla saved humans and that there should be a pattern to his destruction” The energy signal from Ghidorah’s head provoked Godzilla. It kindled the long-forgotten enmity between Godzilla and Ghidorah, and that is why he only attacked the Apex facility, where Ghidorah was uplinked. Whenever the Apex tries to activate the Mechagodzilla, Godzilla appears.
‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ Ending
Mechagodzilla is a dysfunctional weapon. It needed a “life source” for power and Ghidorah’s head to function. However, after the life source is infused in the robot, it starts on its own and quickly enters into a fight with Godzilla. A brawl he was waiting for.
Mechagodzilla is linked to the Apex satellite and can be used to shut it down. However, the connection is encrypted and Bernie, Madison, and Josh couldn’t crack it.
In a massive fight, Kong and Godzilla together try to smash Mechagodzilla but with its hi-tech laser and superior build, it is unstoppable. Inside the control room, Josh pours Bernie’s single malt whiskey that breaks the system and wears out Mechagodzilla, for a while. Kong and Godzilla use the opportunity. Godzilla with its remaining powers charges Kong’s weapon ax through a beam of ‘life force.’ Kong smashes and rips the tech monster apart, thus, saving the world.
Why Godzilla didn’t attack Kong in the end?
Godzilla is a Titan who likes to play God and considers itself the most superior being. Anyone who challenges his might faces his wrath. The scenario that happened with King Ghidorah.
In the middle of the film, while the crew is traveling to Antarctica, Godzilla attacks the fleet and gets into a fight with Kong. Sedated Kong proves no match to Godzilla’s strength. It is when Nathan suggests killing the engine of the ship and shut everything up. To play dead.
“We are playing dead. And we’re making him think that he’s won.”
The trick nurtures Godzilla’s pride and leaves the fleet and Kong alone. In the end, after defeating Mechagodzilla, Kong and Godzilla face each other. However, Kong looks at his ax and understands that there has been enough destruction to life and nature. He let go of his ax and surrendered. Godzilla feels like a winner and swims back into the depth of the ocean, to sleep again.
“In the fight of God and King, the king surrenders for the Greater Good of Humanity.”
The Godzilla franchise promises some enthralling action sequences, the massive rumbling, and destruction. Godzilla vs. Kong fulfills all. Visually, the sequences are improving with each film in the franchise. The fight between Godzilla and Kong is thrilling. The film is visually phenomenal. You won’t be disappointed by the visual appeal.
However, when VFx runs wild and tries to shadow your narrative, I feel, it is your responsibility as a storyteller to amplify your narrative even further. With Godzilla vs Kong, the contrary becomes true. The storytelling keeps getting dreadful no aspect appeals to you emotionally. The trembling Vfx can sparkle your eyes, but what about the curious mind? Will it always be fed with uninteresting and cliche ideas, done to death on screen? As an auteur said, the whole fiasco seemed like a theme park. Godzilla vs. Kong is a sensational murder of Cinema and Storytelling. Art that leaves no emotional impact.
Godzilla vs. Kong is a 2021 Kaiju monster film directed by Adam Wingard. It is the fourth film in the Godzilla MonsterVerse. Godzilla vs. Kong is streaming on HBO Max.
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