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Review: Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire, arrives with a roar


Although the Godzilla franchise is seven decades old, the franchise maintains its popularity as seen by the success in box office with its newest film Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire. Released on March 29, 2024, Godzilla x Kong is the fifth installment of the Monsterverse, an American franchise produced by Legendary Entertainment and Warner Bros. Earning over $485 million worldwide, the movie ranked 2nd for highest grossing movie of 2024 worldwide box office, according to

The Godzilla franchise originated from Japanese film producer Tomoyuki Tanakahas and has consistently released content from films, TV shows, comics and video games. Godzilla is a giant, prehistoric reptile that gained powers after absorbing nuclear radiation from nuclear tests in the Pacific Ocean. The franchise also includes many giant monsters known as kaijus that Godzilla battles with.

While Godzilla x Kong is the fifth movie of the shared cinematic universe, the movie itself is uncomplicated and does not require viewers to watch the previous films. It follows Kong, a kaiju resembling a gorilla, as he searches for more of his kind in the subterrain ecosystem in the middle of the Earth, named Hollow Earth. In this search, Kong encounters a kaiju whose goal is to return to the surface of the Earth and destroy humans, resulting in the team–up between Godzilla and Kong.

The main strength of the movie is the primary focus on the monsters. In past films such as Godzilla (2014) and Godzilla: King of the Monsters, there was too much focus on the human plot of the movie, taking away from the screen time of the kaijus. The new movie feels more like it is telling the story of Kong on his journey, displaying his emotions regarding his discovery that he is not the last of his kind, instead of following the humans’ plot with the monsters as secondary characters. 

Even though the humans take a secondary role in this movie, they have a more compelling story, unlike in previous films. Its main focus is on Jia, a deaf, orphaned girl from the Iwi tribe, who makes a reappearance and further fleshes out the emotions of Kong due to her origins from Kong’s home island. Her role parallels Kong as she discovers she is also not the last of her people. This storyline resonates with viewers through its emphasis on the meaning of family. The side character Trapper, a dentist who fixes Kong’s tooth, also adds some fun to the movie with his laid back personality. While there were annoying moments and some jokes that fell flat, the humans were not a hindrance to the enjoyment of the movie.

The cinematography and CGI is well–done as it shows beautiful scenes of Hollow Earth as well as the entertaining clashes between the kaijus, occuring in places like Rome, Antarctica, Rome, Rio de Janeiro and Hollow Earth. The movie successfully delivers on plentiful action–packed fight sequences that are exciting through their destructive nature and their demonstrations of the powerful abilities of these giant monsters. 

However, one of the main issues with the movie is it lacks a sense of danger that resulted from the more fun and comedial style the movie takes. Although the action sequences between monsters are entertaining and definitely amusing to watch, the way it is choreographed makes the film feel silly. The 394–feet–tall Godzilla and 335–feet–tall Kong feel less their size when they are running, tackling and brawling against each other and their opponents, looking similar to a wrestling match. When Godzilla and Kong run side-by-side, it looks remarkably similar to a superhero lineup. While it makes for an extremely entertaining fight, it undermines the threat of the antagonist kaiju from Hollow Earth that is trying to go to the surface and destroy human civilization.

Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire is a fun film due to its simplicity and plentiful monster clashes. It is visually appealing and does not have a dull moment. Despite its flaws, if viewers are looking for pure entertainment and not much complexity or plot, it is worth a watch.

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About the Contributor
Allison Tieu
Allison Tieu, Co-Editor-In Chief
Hi! I’m Allison Tieu. I was the former Feature Section Editor , and I am currently the Co-Editor-in-Chief. This is my third year on The Arrow staff. I enjoy journalism because I love the freedom of creativity it gives you and the process of creating the newspaper and putting everything together. In my free time, I love to read, play the violin, play video games and listen to music.
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