The MonsterVerse has been delivering bombastic kaiju-on-kaiju action since 2014, when Godzilla stomped back on to cinema screens around the world. Since then, both Godzilla and Kong have both had separate adventures as well as sharing the screen in a battle for the ages in Godzilla vs Kong, the former proving himself to be the true King of the Monsters. In Godzilla X Kong: The New Empire, we see the iconic kaiju join forces in quite literally the biggest film of the year.

Godzilla and the almighty Kong face a colossal threat hidden deep within the planet, challenging their very existence and the survival of the human race.
You have to respect the audacity of these MonsterVerse films to keep on delivering such insane spectacle, cities levelled as titans smash the absolute shit out of each other, with so many wrestling moves thrown in for good measure - it is Wrestlemania right around the corner mind. Where Gareth Edwards' Godzilla took a measured approach to showing the sheer scale of the titular beast, Godzilla X Kong throws that all out the window to go hard with its brutal fights. That would be one of the biggest gripes I have with these films now, the fact that all sense of scale seems to have been lost - even if I'm an absolute sucker for dumb blockbuster fun. We will never get anything like the Edwards Godzilla in this franchise and I have made my peace with that, this is very much their world with us living in it.

Adam Wingard makes a bold choice in The New Empire by having a lot of the film without human characters, scenes being carried by the titans without dialogue - gestures to one another or even a plain old smack round the head their way of communicating. It is one that works and sort of fixes a past issue of focusing too much on the dull human side to the narrative, though the humans are still present and with plenty of exposition, they don't get in the way of the action at all. Rebecca Hall and Brian Tyree Henry make welcome returns while a brilliantly over-the-top Dan Stevens proves a suitably larger-then-life addition amidst all the chaos, their characters visited fleetingly between monster brawls making the film move along at a blistering pace.
If you're going to make the choice of having the titans lead the way, you've got to make sure they stand out. That they do in The New Empire, thanks to some great visual effects work and action sequences that make this such a fun cinematic experience. Godzilla and Kong are at their destructive bests - the former making Rome's most iconic structure his new resting ground by the looks of it, while the Skar King proves to be a worth adversary for the titular duo. There's moments you'll wince but there's also moments you'll punch the air in triumph, a film not taking itself too seriously in full swing and me eating up everything it has to offer.

It's big, it's loud and it sure is dumb, Godzilla X Kong: The New Empire is the kind of blockbuster that exists to simply sit back and enjoy. I don't think the MonsterVerse is going anywhere soon and, while the first Godzilla film remains my favourite of them all, I've accepted that they're deciding to embrace the chaos and absurdity to deliver sheer blockbuster entertainment.

Verdict: ★★★★


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