By HALO KWOK
Which powerful beast will reign superior in the battle to save the world?
The long-awaited fifth installment to the Monsterverse series, Godzilla vs. Kong, will be released to the public on Mar. 31. As Kong attempts to find his true home, the gorilla unexpectedly ventures into an epic battle against Godzilla. With humanity on the line, the two titan's battle reveals a hidden force that implies it is only the beginning of the mystery within the cinematic universe.
While the film's astonishing CGI battle of two of the most iconic monsters already makes it a must-watch for moviegoers, the significance of the movie lies within its role to expand the story of the Titans.
One aspect of the storytelling Godzilla incorporates is the unique sci-fi mystery twist. The Godzilla franchise was never lacking in action sequences, but it never stuck to specific lore. However, with the reboot, that begins to change. The Monsterverse series begins with Godzilla, a film that centers around the super-sized iguana’s rule. After the U.S. military’s failed attempt to dispose of Godzilla in 1954, the skeletal remains of a creature similar to the powerful specimen were discovered in 1999. As the film continues, specific hints such as nuclear facility shutdowns and investigative findings showcase the possibility that Godzilla is still alive. The story's setup creates essence in Godzilla as the big screen status of the film solidifies his origin story, maintaining continuity in future sequels.
Furthermore, the action-packed cinematography of ginormous beings battling it out is refreshing. With humanity at near extinction, the stakes are high for Godzilla, and the audience takes a portion of that anxiety from the mood created by the soundtrack and screenplay.
Evidently, the initial film was a hit with international audiences. Godzilla (2014) was so perfectly executed that critics applauded the film for its restoration to the franchise’s “fire-breathing glory.” After the first Godzilla movie was released in 1954, moviegoers all around the world have been consistently disappointed with the rest of the series’ installments. Yet, the emotional depiction of humanity’s faith in Godzilla along with the thrilling battles in the modern reboot of the long-running franchise brought back an overwhelming amount of support from cinephiles.
Despite the hype, critics bashed the sequel for its unsubstantial plotline and lack of character interactions. In the most recent film, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, humanity barely escapes extinction. That was only possible after Godzilla defeated the ancient alien King Ghidorah with the help of many sacrifices. Godzilla then becomes the new King of the Titans, as all of the newly awakened Titans converge and submit to his rule. Although the film received low ratings from critics, based on the recent trailers of the third installment, the developments made in the sequel will play an important role in the overarching plot.
In light of the recent announcement for Godzilla vs. Kong, the trailers generated numerous speculations regarding the state of “King of the Monsters,” as the teaser turns the tide by portraying Godzilla as a monstrous villain that decimates countless cities. In past films, Godzilla was a fighting force that stood alongside humanity and assisted in mankind’s victory against various abominable beasts. Therefore, it is baffling that such a heroic icon would act so viciously on its own accord. As a result, there is a possibility that a group of evil-doers is controlling Godzilla, which would explain its unusually hostile nature.
On the other hand, another possible explanation for Godzilla’s changed state is his new title as the ruler of the Titans. After defeating King Ghidorah in the previous film, Godzilla could have acquired the primal instincts of King Ghidorah that inspires it to create a new world — a new world without humans but filled with Titans.
Overall, fans of the classic Monsterverse franchise should look forward to Godzilla vs. Kong’s release. With the lack of entertainment during this pandemic, the film will finally serve as something that all action-lovers can look forward to. While the interesting theories are all speculation, there is no doubt that the Godzilla franchise is planning to expand itself with its new release.