This could have so easily have been a disaster on the level Suicide Squad and it comes pretty darn close at times.
But there’s something about this shiny, empty, gloriously goofy film that just works.
The main thing is the teaming of director Jordan Vogt-Roberts and Zack Snyder’s long-time cinematographer, Larry Fong.
This movie looks damn good! The overall sense of composition and color is easily the best thing this film has going for it. Every shot looks great, and many look freaking amazing!
Though, there is a rather annoying habit in the editing that quickly cuts between these glorious money-shots in a way that’s just weirdly counter-intuitive. I’m not sure if it’s the fault of a nervous new director lacking confidence in his vision or editor Richard Pearson(The Bourne Supremacy, Quantam of Solace, The Rundown). And while it’s never as offensive as the editing in those films, it still feels out of character and does put a bit of a damper on otherwise great visuals.
And similarly to the recent big-budget abominations like Suicide Squad, the editing in between scenes is bad. Really bad. But at least this story goes down in a nice linear fashion so while jarring, it’s never confusing.
The characters aren’t given any depth whatsoever, but the cast is quite strong and they very smartly cast distinctive looking faces to fill out the random characters so it’s never confusing about who we are looking at.
But it all comes together in a sense of contagious, engaging fun. From the first few scenes I could tell this director brought a grand sense of personality and color that makes even the worst scenes entertaining. The soundtrack isn’t nearly as well integrated as Guardians of the Galaxy, but it works and goes a long way in the movie’s inherent likability.
And Kong is good. A very solid effect, an imposing presence and an all out badass as well. Though this version’s got nothing on Jackson’s in the personality department. As in this version’s got none. At all.
All in all, it’s very serviceable mindless entertainment with a sense of personality and style most film’s of this type don’t get. It’s seriously flawed, the characters are flat, pacing is awkward and this film has nothing more on it’s mind than being cool in a slightly annoying way. But when a giant ape is swatting helicopters out of the sky, or punching ugly lizards, it’s fun.
Go in with very tempered expectations, and you might just have a good time.
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