* * 1/2
To call Godzilla 2 King of the Monsters ridiculous would be an understatement, but it’s not without its charms, chief of which is a truly A-list cast speaking ludicrous dialogue with absolute commitment. It must have been tough, saying lines that make no sense in a story that is incomprehensible; I imagine them all – Charles Dance, Sally Hawkins, Ken Watanabe, David Strathairn – sitting around at night, trading bonkers lines of dialogue they’d had to say that day, as a kind of drinking game.
Some of them have pedigrees with freaky creatures. Hawkins famously shtupped a slimy merman and was rewarded with an Oscar nomination in the terribly over-rated The Shape Of Water; Dance spent four seasons on Game of Thrones, where he at least co-existed in a dragon world. Many of them are returning from Godzilla (2014), which lives in the same cinematic universe as the rebooted King Kong; a clash between the great ape and the nuclear lizard is coming, so there’s something to look forward to.
The plot, such as is discernible, involves Dance as an eco-warrior in charge of a bunch of like-minded British mercenaries colluding with Vera Farmiga, as a scientist and mother traumatised from Godzilla’s last rampage, to free all the monsters on earth from their secret burial grounds so that they can rid earth of most of humanity in order to save it, while a plane-load of other scientists and soldier-types try to stop them, or something like that. In other words, it pits extremist greenies against the government. Whatever. Over a very loud, very confusing, but never boring couple of hours, the main fighting is between the big monsters, and at the end of the day, Godzilla wins. Of course he does. He’s the king of the monsters.