The Godzilla vs. Kong trailer reveals that the new movie is emphasizing Godzilla’s bear-like movements from the 2014 movie, an element of his character that has been largely underutilized thus far in the MonsterVerse.
Directed by Gareth Edwards, 2014’s Godzilla launched the MonsterVerse and introduced an all-new take on the Japanese pop culture icon. In this new Hollywood interpretation of the story, Gojira was depicted as an ancient alpha predator who has lived on Earth for thousands of years. One major distinction between this Godzilla and Toho’s many versions is that instead of being mutated by the atomic bomb in 1954, he was attacked with it by the American military. Furthermore, the MonsterVerse’s Godzilla was less of an anti-hero than his predecessors and more of a protector figure who protects the balance of nature.
Another new idea that the MonsterVerse brought to the table with Godzilla was the implementation of certain animal movements in his fighting style. Those involved with the movie’s special effects have explained that bears, Komodo dragons, and lizards were among the biggest inspirations when it came to deciding how Godzilla should move. Godzilla’s bear-like similarities were never more obvious than they were in the international Godzilla vs. Kong trailer, which showed Godzilla landing a powerful blow on the King of Skull Island.
In the original trailer, Kong could be seen punching Godzilla while on top of an aircraft carrier, but Godzilla’s retaliation against him wasn’t shown until the release of the international trailer. One of the new shots included in the trailer featured Godzilla slapping Kong so hard that he fell on his back. The slap, which had an upward motion to it, looked like something one would expect from a bear. Godzilla behaving this way suggests that Godzilla vs. Kong is putting significant focus one some of the original MonsterVerse ideas. This also goes back to the way that Godzilla climbed onto the aircraft carrier like a lizard. It would seem that giving him more animal-like movements was a priority in Godzilla vs. Kong.
As for the slap and the bear influence in particular, it makes perfect sense that Godzilla would behave in this manner. There may not be a better real-life animal than a bear to serve as a model for how Godzilla should fight in the MonsterVerse. Both are large and powerful creatures capable of standing on two legs. Plus, what separates them from gorillas like Kong is that they have sharp claws. While Toho’s Godzilla often fought with his fists, it certainly feels more sensible for the MonsterVerse’s version to attack with his claws like a bear would. That allows him to get the most use out of the weapons that he has at his disposal. With the tweaks that the MonsterVerse is offering for Godzilla’s fighting style and Kong’s own approach to the battle by giving him an axe, the upcoming movie is sure to deliver a showdown quite unlike the one that unfolded in the original 1962 crossover.