Humanity may think they’re the dominant species on this planet, but Godzilla and a whole host of kaiju monsters are about to put our species in our place in Godzilla 2: King of the Monsters….because make no mistake, this is their world, we just live in it.
The heroic efforts of the crypto-zoological agency Monarch as its members face off against a battery of god-sized monsters, including the mighty Godzilla, who collides with Mothra, Rodan, and his ultimate nemesis, the three-headed King Ghidorah. When these ancient super-species—thought to be mere myths—rise again, they all vie for supremacy, leaving humanity’s very existence hanging in the balance.
If you’re wanting a cinematic experience that is the literal definition of the word BLOCKBUSTER then Godzilla 2: King of the Monster is a rush of adrenaline that you’ll absolutely want to check out. Director Michael Dougherty packs this behemoth of a film to the brim with plenty of outlandish action and full on monster beat downs, not to mention earth ending cataclysmic events that you’ll find yourself shaking in your chair from the surge of adrenaline that pumps through your veins.
Kicking off from previous entries in the series including Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island, fans are thrown into the repercussions of these events and that doesn’t mean good things for clandestine service Monarch, nor those who see the titans as something else. Dougherty finds the right balance here in Godzilla 2 with a combination of mass level monster smashing, a thrilling conspiracy theory narrative and an interesting point-of-view of what happens when nature decides to hit back.
But like the first Godzilla, the focus is not all on the monsters, but the narrative instead builds from the focus on the Russell family, who all find themselves caught up in the action of this world-ending cataclysm brought on by the rise of the titans. Taking the central lead is Kyle Chandler as Dr. Mark Russell, a biologist who used to work for Monarch and who is specialized in the study of animal behaviour and communication. He’s soon rushed back into this adventure to save his ex-wife and daughter and Chandler brings a great every man quality to Mark in the idea that he’s concerned with what matters to him most and that just happens to be his family.
Joining Chandler in the film is noted actress Vera Farmiga, and here she gets a character that really takes audiences for a ride. As Dr. Emma Russell, a paleobiologist working for Monarch she has invented a way to influence and talk with the titans via the development of a specialist acoustic device known as the Orca. This gives her unchecked power in this new world order and the way in which this is treated really throws audiences for a loop. Farmiga’s performance is packed full of energy and there were multiple twists that I didn’t see coming from her participation in the film, and all of it really makes for some great entertainment.
But if the film has a central character who gives it it’s heart then it is most definitely Millie Bobby Brown as the Russell’s daughter Madison. Caught between her bickering parents and the forthcoming rise of the titans, Madison is the audiences point-of-view for the innocents that are caught up in this ecological mess. It’s through her eyes and actions with their childlike innocence that we see the fallacy of humanity’s desire to control a world far bigger than us, and her actions to help restore some kind of balance are particularly moving.
If you want big action, well you’ve got it with Godzilla 2: King of the Monsters. Rodan, Mothra, King Ghidorah and the mighty Godzilla himself all go at it here, and the cinema screen literally shakes with fury with what is on offer here. Along with the earth shattering fight scenes that these giant prehistorical beasts in engage in, Dougherty and his team also dive into the exploration of the nature and significance of these characters and fans of the elder Godzilla films of the Toho Studio days will be very happy with the secrets and depths that they get to experience here.
One thing that really struck me with Godzilla 2: King of the Monsters was it’s heavy use of religion and mythology and how it incorporated these thematic ideas into an exploration of our own position on earth. Juxtaposing the notion that world myth is connected together and that these creatures are by-gone beings of an age long past, Godzilla 2 really runs wild with plenty of incredible details and focus on these new gods and our servitude to them really makes your mind run wild. Alongside this is also the presence of our changing ecology and the destruction that humanity has waged on it, and this with the additional presence of the titans is analyzed in a very interesting way.
Packed full of epic moments that will get your adrenaline going, Godzilla 2: King of the Monsters is a film you need to see on the biggest screen possible and trust me when I promise you that you’ll be in for one hell of a ride here.
Image: Roadshow Films