Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire - 4K Blu-ray Review

Michael Scott

Moderator / Reviewer
Staff member
Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Messages
5,354
Location
Arizona
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Yamaha TRS-7850 Atmos Receiver
Other Amp
Peavy IPR 3000 for subs
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Panasonic UB820 4K UHD Player
Front Speakers
Cheap Thrills Mains
Center Channel Speaker
Cheap Thrills Center
Surround Speakers
Volt 10 Surrounds
Surround Back Speakers
Volt 10 Rear Surrounds
Rear Height Speakers
Volt 6 Overheads
Subwoofers
2x Marty subs (full size with SI 18's)
Video Display Device
Sony 85 inch X950H FALD TV
Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire


front.jpg
Movie: :3stars:
4K Video: :4.5stars:
Video:
Audio: :5stars:
Extras: :3.5stars:
Final Score: :4stars:




AV NIRVANA is member and reader-supported. When you purchase an item using our links, we might earn an affiliate commission.


1.jpg
Movie

Monster movies these days can sometimes be way too frustrating for their own good. Much like the Transformers series, they tend to focus TOO MUCH on the human elements of the story, and forego a lot of the monster mayhem that most of us want to see in our monster (or robot) movies. Luckily this last year we got a chance to see a great monster movie with the perfect balance of human story line to monster story line, and was one of the most MASSIVE hits of the year, making back almost 10 times it’s theatrical budget. Of course I mean the smash hit Godzilla Minus One that STILL doesn’t have a domestic home video release yet (but somehow managed to slip onto Netflix this last few weeks) and managed to blow away cinemagoers who were expecting something a lot worse. But simultaneously Warner Brothers was releasing the latest flick in their “Monsterverse” with Godzilla and King Kong teaming up once more to take on a monster that threatens to devastate humanity.

Last time we left off Godzilla had gone back to keeping the other Titans in check, while King Kong was allowed to stay at the center of the earth and rule as King of that domain away from the might of Godzilla (and of course, monitored by Monarch from a remote observation post). However, strange winds appear to be brewing, as Godzilla is going around on the top of the Earth soaking up as much radiation as he possibly can in preparation for something big. At the center of the Earth Kong is finding out that he is not as “alone” as everyone previously thought he was. Kong accidentally runs across a band of giant apes like himself in the uncharted regions, only to find out that things are worse than imagined.

2.jpg
It turns out that the rest of the apes are ruled over by a cruel lord known as “the Scar King”, who turns out to have been imprisoned at the center of the Earth thousands of years ago for trying to take over the surface and rule it. Not only is the Scar King every bit as strong and powerful as Kong, but he commands an ice breathing titan known as Shimo, who the Scar King controls with a mystical crystal. This means that Kong and Godzilla have to team up once more in order to put the Scar King back in his place, and protect human kind from yet ANOTHER threat.

Godzilla x Kong is a silly affair, and one that falls prey to the typical monster movie trope that I mentioned above. That is, it deals WAY too much with the human interactions, including splicing in our telepathic mute girl from the previous films FINALLY getting to do something worthwhile in the form of an ancient race of humans that lives at the center of the Earth as well. However, things get muddled way too quickly with not enough action, and not enough tension. There really aren’t any stakes to the film, as we know Kong and Godzilla are going to come out on top. Especially when the fights are so few and far between until the final 25 minutes of the movie.

Also, I could be wrong, but it feels like the CGI is slipping in the films as they go on. The last couple of films have literally been stuffed to the gills with an over abundance of computer graphics, and maybe they just don’t have the budget to render EVERYTHING as well as Avatar did. But at the same time it detracts from the viewing experience when you can very obviously see that the mini ape that attaches itself to Kong is super fake looking. Or the lack of detail on the Scar King’s body that we’ve seen in previous Monstnerverse films. Not to mention the fact that this is REALLY a King Kong movie, as Godzilla himself barely shows up for 20 minutes of the entire film (he’s just walking around on the surface absorbing radiation until the final battle). That being said, it’s a good time with things smashing, belief being completely suspended, and big monsters destroying everything, and I’m totally on board with that.




Rating:

Rated PG-13 for creature violence and action.




4K Video: :4.5stars: Video:
3.jpg
If you have seen the last several Monsterverse films then you know exactly what you’re in for with regards to Godzilla x Kong. That is, it’s going to be a near perfect 4K UHD, filled with sparkling neon colors under the earth, as well as on the monsters themselves, but also some wonderfully nuanced dark underground shots as well. In the human hideout under the earth there are some seriously taxing sequences that will stretch the limits of your black levels for the TV you’re using (though nothing like the 2014 Godzillla movie that started the Monsterverse) and the 4K discs handles everything with ease. While I noticed a few spikes in the 80s, the film seems to live right in the mid 70s for the bitrate.

Dolby Vision enhancements really sparkle, especially with the luscious greens and dark reds of the underworld lair at the center of the earth that Kong calls home, and the atomic breath that is Godzilla’s super weapon. Blacks are deep and inky and the colors are just jaw dropping as I said above. There is a little bit of a problem with the copious amounts of CGI looking a bit fake (sometimes more than a little fake), as well as instances that look a bit soft where live action practical effects meet the CGI. However, that little tidbit is less to do with the actual transfer, and more to do with the how the film itself looked due to the CGI application on a fundamental level.








Audio: :5stars:
4.jpg
Yeah, yeah, I almost don’t have to write this section, but here we go. Much like the last 2 films in the franchise, Godzilla x Kong provides us with a KILLER Dolby Atmos track that is the very definition of loud and aggressive. Unlike the 2014 film that was known for being STUPIDLY over bloated in the bass department (as fun as a bass bomb film is), this is a more balanced affair, giving us rip roaring action sequences that make full use of the surround system, but also bass that feels even and isn’t clipping. Godzilla and Kong alike both roar with window rattling power, but it doesn’t really clip at the source, and seems to have a fairly low extension as well. Overheads get some great activity ranging from ambient forest effects, all the way up to rocks falling from over the audience’s head during the big gravity free battle. All in all, this is pure ear candy for us home theater snobs, and I honestly couldn’t find anything to even mildly complain about. Well done Warner.







Extras: :3.5stars:
5.png
• GxK: Day of Reckoning
• Evolution of the Titans: Godzilla Evolved
• Evolution of the Titans: From Lonely God to King
• Into the Hollow Earth: Visualizing Hollow Earth
• Into the Hollow Earth: Monsters of Hollow Earth
• The Battles Royale: A Titanic Fight Among the Pyramids
• The Battles Royale: The Zero Gravity Battle
• The Battles Royale: The Titans Trash Rio
• The Intrepid Director: Adam Wingard: Big Kid
• The Intrepid Director: Adam Wingard: Set Tour
• The Imagination Department
• The Monarch Island Base: Portal to Another World
• The Evolution of Jia: From Orphan to Warrior
• Bernie's World: Behind the Triple Locked Door
• Commentary by Director Adam Wingard, Visual Effects Supervisor Alessandro Ongaro, Production Designer Tom Hammock and Editor Josh Schaeffer













Final Score: :4stars:


The Monsterverse films keep getting sillier and sillier, but I can’t really complain as even the original Toho films back in the day were not exactly high art (though Godzilla Minus One actually shocked everyone with how good it was this last year), but this one seems to be goofier than even Godzilla vs. Kong. It’s mostly a King Kong movie with a few cameos from Godzilla though, so fans will want to adjust their expectations accordingly. BUUUUUUUUUUUT, at the end of the day I still enjoyed this as a mindless popcorn film, and find it fascinating to see how the United States’ Monsterverse differs from the Toho Direct method that was Godzilla Minus One. But whatever your thoughts on the movie itself, the audio and video are top notch, and the extras actually rather decent as well, leaving me to recommend this is a fun popcorn watch.


Technical Specifications:

Starring: Rebecca Hall, Brian Tyree Henry, Dan Stevens, Kaylee Hottle, Godzilla, King Kong
Directed by: Adam Wingard
Written by: Terry Rossio, Adam Wingard, SImon Barrett
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 HEVC
Audio: English: Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 Core), English, French, Spanish DD 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Studio: Warner Brothers
Rated: PG-13
Runtime: 114 Minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: June 11th, 2024
image.png





Recommendation: Popcorn Watch

 

Sonnie

Senior Admin
Staff member
Joined
Apr 2, 2017
Messages
5,307
Location
Alabama
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
StormAudio ISP Elite 24 MK3 Processor
Main Amp
McIntosh MC1.25KW Monoblock Amps
Additional Amp
StormAudio PA 16 MK3
Computer Audio
Intel NUC w/ Roon ROCK
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Panasonic UB9000 4K UHD Player (for media discs)
Front Speakers
RTJ 410
Center Channel Speaker
MartinLogan Focus C-18
Front Wide Speakers
JTR Neosis 110HT
Surround Speakers
JTR Neosis 210RT
Surround Back Speakers
JTR Neosis 210RT
Front Height Speakers
JTR Neosis 110HT-SL
Middle Height Speakers
JTR Neosis 110HT-SL
Rear Height Speakers
JTR Neosis 110HT-SL
Subwoofers
JTR Captivators - 4000ULF-TL x2 + 2400 x6
Other Speakers or Equipment
VTI Amp Stands for the Monoblocks
Video Display Device
Sony 98X90L
Remote Control
AVA Cinema
Streaming Equipment
Kaleidescape | Lenova X1 - Intel NUC for Roon
Streaming Subscriptions
Lifetime Roon Subscription
Tidal
qobuz
Netflix
Amazon Prime
Satellite System
Dish Joey 4K
Other Equipment
Zero Surge 8R15W-1 | Salamander Synergy Equipment Stand
About what I figured, but I'm still all over it and looking forward to watching it. Thanks for the review... excellent as always. :T
 

Asere

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 14, 2017
Messages
1,480
Location
Texas
More  
Main Amp
Denon AVR X4200W
Additional Amp
Parasound HCA 1500A
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Oppo 103D
Front Speakers
SVS Prime Towers
Center Channel Speaker
SVS Prime
Surround Speakers
SVS Prime Satellites
Front Height Speakers
Proficient
Rear Height Speakers
Proficient
Subwoofers
Dual Kreisel DXD 12012, PSA S3000i
Video Display Device
Samsung PNF8500
Screen
60"
Remote Control
Harmony Ultra
Streaming Subscriptions
Panamax M5300 PM, Monster HTS 3600
I haven't seen this one but looks over the top. I think Godzilla Minus One got the better review. Thanks for the review.
 

Michael Scott

Moderator / Reviewer
Staff member
Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 4, 2017
Messages
5,354
Location
Arizona
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
Yamaha TRS-7850 Atmos Receiver
Other Amp
Peavy IPR 3000 for subs
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Panasonic UB820 4K UHD Player
Front Speakers
Cheap Thrills Mains
Center Channel Speaker
Cheap Thrills Center
Surround Speakers
Volt 10 Surrounds
Surround Back Speakers
Volt 10 Rear Surrounds
Rear Height Speakers
Volt 6 Overheads
Subwoofers
2x Marty subs (full size with SI 18's)
Video Display Device
Sony 85 inch X950H FALD TV
About what I figured, but I'm still all over it and looking forward to watching it. Thanks for the review... excellent as always. :T

yup, Monkey and Lizard smash things....
 

Todd Anderson

Editor / Senior Admin
Staff member
Joined
Jan 20, 2017
Messages
9,390
Location
Balt/Wash Metro
More  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
StormAudio ISP.24 MK2
Main Amp
Emotiva XPA-5
Additional Amp
Emotiva XPA Gen3 2.8 multichannel amp
Other Amp
Denon X8500H
Computer Audio
AudioEngine A2+
DAC
THX ONYX
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Kaleidescape TERRA, OPPO UDP-203, Panasonic UB9000
Front Speakers
GoldenEar Technology Triton One.R
Center Channel Speaker
GoldenEar Technology SuperCenter Reference
Surround Speakers
SVS Ultra Surround
Surround Back Speakers
SVS Ultra Bookshelf
Front Height Speakers
SVS Prime Elevation x4 (Top Front, Top Mid-Front)
Rear Height Speakers
SVS Prime Elevation x4 (Top Middle, Top Rear)
Subwoofers
dual SVS SB16s + dual PSA XS30s
Other Speakers or Equipment
Behringer 1124p; Aura Bass Shaker Pros; SuperSub X
Video Display Device
JVC NX7
Screen
Seymour Screen Excellence, Enlightor NEO AT Screen
Streaming Equipment
iFi Audio Zen Blue
Streaming Subscriptions
Qobuz, TIDAL, Spotify, ROON
Other Equipment
LG Electronics 65-inch B6 OLED, Sony 65-inch X900F, ZeroSurge 8R15W x 2, ZeroSurge 2R15W x 2
I'm in. Look forward to letting this destroy my house!
 
Top Bottom