Review: Is Kong really King?

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King of Skull Island, but not the charts. Image: empireonline

Kong: Skull Island has taken a leap forward to a time closer to ours – not that it’ll be making the same leap up the charts.

This version of King Kong is set towards the end of the Vietnam War where scientists, soldiers and adventurers unite to explore a mythical, uncharted island in the Pacific Ocean.

Cut off from everything they know, they venture into the domain of the mighty Kong, igniting the ultimate battle between man and nature.

As their mission of discovery soon becomes one of survival, they must fight to escape from a primal world where humanity does not belong and where man turns out to be the biggest monster of all.

The star-studded cast made the movie look promising with leads including Tom Hiddleston (The Avengers, Crimson Peak), Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction, Unbreakable), Brie Larson (Short Term 12, Room), John Goodman (10 Cloverfield Lane, The Borrowers) and John C. Reilly (Walk Hard, Step Brothers).

But unfortunately the actors’ characters are under-developed, which leads to their relationships with each other seeming hollow and weak.

In turn, this creates a lack of connection and empathy between the characters and the audience causing a lessened level of engagement with a strained flow of dialect and story.

Having said that, there’s a lot more for the audience to focus on with the impressive CGI and special effects-filled film.

In terms of action and thrill, Kong: Skull Island certainly delivers with its epic battles between monsters of all shapes and big sizes. And those willing to wait, an extra scene has been added at the end of the credits, hinting that more monster movies are in store…

3 1/2 out 5 stars

Watch Kong: Skull Island trailer: