'Godzilla: King of the Monsters' disappoints at the box office

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Godzilla disappoints at the US box office (Credit: Warner Bros)

UPDATE: Godzilla: King of the Monsters has underperformed at the UK box office, reports Screen, mirroring its similarly disappointing US opening.

The sequel to 2014’s Godzilla was unable to unseat Disney’s Aladdin, animation The Secret of Life of Pets 2, and the Elton John biopic Rocketman - all in their second week of release - debuting at number four in the UK box office top ten.

Including previews, the film took £3.5m in its opening week. Gareth Edwards’ 2014 Godzilla, opened with £6.4m in the UK on its way to a £17.2m run. Kong: Skull Island, the previous film in Warner Bros.’ Monsterverse, took £6.23m in its opening week, back in 2017.

ORIGINAL STORY: After some pretty punishing reviews, Godzilla – and his monstrous cohorts Rodan, Ghidorah and Mothra – have fallen short of expectations at the US box office.

The latest in the 'MonsterVerse' from Legendary Pictures, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, has made $49 million (£38.7 million) across more than 4000 screens in the US, which doesn't bode brilliantly for a movie that's cost around $200 million to make.

For perspective, the previous movies in the series, Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island, did notably better on their opening weekends, launching to $93 million (£73 million) and $61 million (£48 million) respectively.

Read more: Charles Dance ‘struggled to stay awake’ watching Godzilla

Though things brightened slightly worldwide, with a total haul of $179 million (£141 million), but industry outlets like Variety are already calling it a 'fading franchise'.

In a somewhat downbeat assessment, the head of US distribution Jeff Goldstein told Variety: “The challenge and goal for us is to make sure the audience broadens out. The movie is dependent on broadening beyond just the fanbase.”

Starring Vera Farmiga, Millie Bobby Brown and Kyle Chandler, it brings in new kaiju from the original Japanese movies for a climactic showdown.

(Credit: Warner Bros)

But as well as an underwhelming opening, the movie has suffered some pretty punishing reviews too.

The Observer called it 'beastly in all the wrong ways', in a one-star review, The Guardian being slightly kinder proffering that it 'has rare moments of visual splendour but they can't disguise a laughable script with a ramshackle narrative'.

IndieWire branded it 'dark, wet and inept'.

Even one of its other stars, Game of Thrones legend Charles Dance, said he ‘had difficulty staying awake’ while watching it, before backtracking, telling The Guardian: “No, I didn’t say that! I mean, it’s spectacular.”

Read more: Godzilla: A fading franchise?

He added that catering on set was ‘sensational’.

The Wrap, mind you, praised it as 'all-thriller-no-filler approach both to monsters and the human drama'.

It's out now across the UK, while Godzilla vs Kong is due out in 2020.