Chris Blazo’s review published on Letterboxd:
I really enjoyed this action packed, nonpareil feature. It contains some of the best effects I've seen in a real long time and it's energy was full bore after the 35 minute mark. I particularly liked how it wasn't a revision, prequel or even a sequel to the 2005 Peter Jackson film, King Kong. The film was it's own separate entity and the use of Kong was considerably more iniquitous. I also liked the innovative values Jordan Vogt-Roberts brought to the production of the film, especially the creative creatures that speckled throughout. The cast for the most part was spot-on, but I don't know why Brie Larson was in the film at all. That part should of been played by a man and hey, that's ok. In real life, that part most likely would of been a man. The assertion of a strong female character in every film is becoming ridiculous and redundant. It's ok to have an all male, main cast. I mean if The Outsiders was filmed today, Derry and Pony Boy would be played by actresses. Aside from that tiny scruple, Kong: Skull Island is a pretty good event to fill one's time and I'd recommend it whole-heartedly to anyone.
This fantasy film starts with monster enthusiast, Bill Randa (John Goodman) and colleague Houston Brooks (Corey Hawkins) approaching a senator for a military escort and funding to a remote, uninhabited island that's possibly holding undocumented creatures. With some persuasion and satellite images, the senator okays the idea and Bill starts the process of getting a team of scientists together. The military squad that joins the expedition is lead by Colonel Preston Packard (Samuel L. Jackson) and they are in charge of protection as well as dispersing seismic bombs. After everyone involved rendezvous on a battleship, the team flies through the everlasting storm that encircles Skull Island and after they make it through, they see a world of natural beauty studded by tall peaks. Almost immediately Packard's squad starts dropping the bombs and after a couple go off they are ravaged by the gigantic ape, Kong. He takes every helicopter out of the sky and kills the majority of everyone, but the few that survived turn into two groups separated by miles of uncertain terrain and it's inhabitants. Colonel Packard takes the attack personal and sets his sights on extinguishing Kong forever. Packard leads one group of mostly soldiers while a hired, professional tracker/guide, James Conrad (Tom Hiddleston) leads the second group of mostly scientists and photographer, Mason Weaver (Brie Larson). Conrad's group eventually runs into Hank Marlow (John C. Reilly), a crash-landed P-51 pilot who wrecked on Skull Island during World War 2 almost 30 years prior. He relays all of his knowledge about the island and it's wildlife as well as what Kong's presence means. The film presses on as the two teams try and connect while they battle and elude the bewildering creatures that call Skull Island home. The race against time begins as they only have three total days to meet the extraction team at the rendezvous point, but also to stop Col. Packard from killing off the last of a great species that's only protecting it's home.