Patrick Jensen’s review published on Letterboxd:
I didn't know what to expect from this, but... I actually ended up liking this film. I was at best expecting what could be called Harambe: The Movie, but I instead got a blockbuster that was fully aware of what it was and admirably carried on being itself. I think the reason why I enjoyed this more than Gareth Edwards' Godzilla is down to the direction. Jordan Vogt-Roberts puts heavy emphasis on the aspect of discovering a new, uncanny thing that could spell the doom of mankind, whilst not forgetting to have some fun along the way. Plus, the character feels delightfully diverse, with John C. Reilly and Brie Larson being the highlights for me, whilst Tom Hiddleston surprisingly got a lot out of a role that he doesn't look the part for. The killer soundtrack helps a lot as well. You can't go wrong when you have Black Sabbath, The Stooges and David Bowie songs in your film.
With that said, as amazing as the visual effects are, the film felt less interesting whenever the monsters were on-screen, and the overt references to Apocalypse Now/Heart of Darkness did annoy me at times. It made the film come off as if it was trying to perhaps convey a greater message, which it didn't need to do in order to be a great film. The scientists/civilian characters could also be a source of frustration for me, as they seemed a bit too detached from the action. Show some emotion, for fuck's sake!
In conclusion, Kong: Skull Island was better than I thought it would be. I do still think the film should have ended with Kong declaring he's the lord and laying his vengeance upon Samuel L. Jackson. Then Jackson would have known that he should have done the Harambe salute to get past Kong.