Nuclear Breath vs Opposable Thumbs: The Showdown

Titans in both size and pop culture status, Godzilla and King Kong are officially facing off on the big screen (or on the little screen, if you have HBO Max) for the first time since the original 1962 film, King Kong vs. Godzilla. Now, with a slightly different title and much more expensive special effects, Godzilla vs. Kong has smashed its way to the top of the box office with a worldwide total of $285.4 million in its opening weekend. While the story isn’t exactly essential to a viewer’s enjoyment of the big monster fights, it would be best to steer clear of the rest of this article if you are trying to avoid spoilers.

Promotional material for Godzilla vs. Kong, 2021.

Godzilla vs. Kong is the culmination of what is known as “The Monsterverse,” which was started by Godzilla in 2014 and was followed by Godzilla: King of the Monsters in 2019. King Kong entered The Monsterverse in 2017’s Kong: Skull Island. All of the films were met with fairly average reviews (between six and seven stars out of ten) and Godzilla vs. Kong hasn’t differed much in that area.

Promotional material for Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, 2016


To find out if these opinions are shared by more local viewers of the film, The Blue and White spoke to Apopka High School students in order to gauge their feelings on Godzilla vs. Kong. Senior Dylan Primus, for example, felt “disappointed in the ending because I wanted it to be monster vs monster.”  This comment is in reference to the fact that the movie ends in a stalemate that has no real consequences for either combatant. This has become somewhat of a staple in movies that promise to pit two major characters against each other. A notable example of this was in 2016’s Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, in which the fight between the titular characters is interrupted when they have to team up to fight a greater threat. While it is unknown whether or not the writer of Godzilla vs. Kong took inspiration from that movie, senior Carlos Rico was able to see it coming. “I predicted that that it was gonna be a tie between both characters since everyone predicted that Mecha-Godzilla was going to be in the movie. I was a little disappointed because the fight was predictable.”

A look at the human cast (from right to left): Rebecca Hall, Alexander Skarsgård, and Kaylee Hottle in Godzilla vs. Kong.

Another complaint about the movie that has been relatively consistent among reviewers was that the weakest parts of the movie were the parts that shifted the focus from the giant monster fights to the less interesting human stories. Carlos believed that “the human story was bland because it had a generic villain plot twist” and that “even the emotional scenes were generic.” Similarly, Dylan thought “the human story was boring and I honestly wished that it wasn’t a part of the movie so that I could get a good fight against the two.”

Since action-packed “popcorn movies” aren’t typically known to have stories of great depth and meaning, it’s no wonder that the complaints mostly deal with that aspect of the film. However, if there were to be just one praiseworthy part of the movie, most would likely agree that the visual effects would fit in that category. After all, it would be quite difficult to make a movie about giant monster fights without some decent CGI. Unless, of course, it was the 1960’s again…


In the end, Godzilla vs. Kong is not a movie that’s going to revolutionize the film industry. That’s just not the type of movie that it was meant to be. In any case, it’s a fun and exciting romp that delivers on its title. Within just the first forty-five minutes of runtime, Godzilla and Kong have had their first of several major smackdowns. It’s exactly the kind of movie for viewers to turn off their brains and enjoy the visually impressive battles and nonsensical story. If you don’t take it too seriously, Godzilla vs. Kong is a great movie to stream at home (on HBO Max) or even for a safe return to the theaters.