Kong: Skull Island

Kong: Skull Island ★★★½

With the Vietnam war winding down, a group of soldiers and scientists visit a remote Indian Ocean island where legend has it that it's inhabited by giant creatures, the most terrifying of them being a 100-meters tall ape.

I must give credit to "Kong: Skull Island" for never trying to pretend that it's anything other than what it actually is: a fun monster movie whose only goal is to entertain people who enjoy this kind of stuff. Sure, there is some ecological and anti-imperialist subtext, but it never steps on the main narrative about King Kong and the other titans on Skull Island. Jordan Vogt-Roberts doesn't give much breathing room to the characters but ramps up the awe factor to "Jurassic Park" levels, and shows some creativity when it comes to the action scenes, especially the climactic fight between Kong and the giant Skullcrawler. The story is completely different from the one we were used from the previous film versions of Kong. There is no "romance" here and considering the context that's probably a good thing.

It's amazing, and a bit baffling, how all these terrific actors agreed to participate in a flick where their characters are little more than two-dimensional stereotypes, with the exception of John C. Reilly's stranded veteran. Hiddleston, Larson, Goodman, and Jackson, they all give the best performances they can. But there is just not enough meat to sink their teeth in. Kudos to them though for not phoning it in.

There is nothing wrong with enjoying a movie like "Kong: Skull Island", just like there is nothing wrong with enjoying a good hamburger once in a while. It's not only a competently made blockbuster but also refreshingly unapologetic in its populist nature.

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