Kong: Skull Island is exactly what you would expect after seeing the trailers, a monster mash that gives you big creatues fighting whilst puny humans run around trying not to get squished. It is not a remake or sequel to the Peter Jackson version and, thankfully, it’s not as long either.
Lets get the bad out of the way first, namely a daft plot which involves a group of people and the army going to Skull Island (in fact I can’t even remember why they were going to the island in the first place!) and then trying to get off again……..not original at all but why bother when you know its all about the monsters. And then we have the acting……for the most part it’s pretty poor, Tom Hiddlestone was not heroic at all and it makes me worry about his Bond credentials (he just didn’t look the part), Brie Larson just stood around and Samuel L Jackson did his normal OTT angst ridden performance as a helicopter Colonel (all a bit Apocalypse Now). In fact, the only actor to come out with any credibility is John C. Reilly who has a funny role as someone who’s been on the island for along time and doesn’t know how history has changed.
The good is Kong, he’s a fantastically imagined scene stealer that shows CGI at the top of its game. Every time he’s involved you know something exciting is going to happen. This leads to the other positive, the action. It’s very good, well staged and there is plenty of variety as to what/how Kong fights. There is also a suitably loud and proud soundtrack which matches the action all the way.
Note: Stay to the very end as there is an interesting extra that suggests where this franchise will go next…..
Verdict: Great when the monsters are about but a bit dull when they aren’t. A good film to see at the cinema and I imagine it would have been great in 3D.