The titular relationship has more dramatic nuance than any of the human ones (mom and daughter was sweet though), which speaks both to the poor writing (needed more self-aware moments like Walter’s cut-off speech) but also to the pretty satisfying way the God vs. King arc comes to a (ripped off and oozing) head (yes, the real enemy here is indeed the nonsensical sci-fi schlock that destroys us humans who make it). Fantastic monster action (the colours and camera angles and VFX are on point).
A greedy film producer assembles a team of moviemakers and sets out for the infamous Skull Island, where they find more than just cannibalistic natives. (IMDb)
“It was beauty killed the beast”: A stupid line that botches the promising thematic arc. This character was the one who dragged Kong from home to hellhole for a life of humiliation all for his own gain but sure, let him end the film with this bullshit poetic proclamation that places blame on the fucking sunset and the woman who literally just tried to save Kong’s life. It’s a great film otherwise: the action-adventure is truly breathtaking in spite of dated CGI and cringe-y native portrayals.
7.5/10 (Really Good)
After the Vietnam war, a team of scientists explore an uncharted island in the Pacific, venturing into the domain of the mighty Kong, and must fight to escape a primal Eden. (IMDb)
Nails that classic adventure movie-feel with its anticipation-building, crew-collecting first act, the dual-jungle trip suspense of the second, and awesome monster action that culminates in a wild third act. The cool aesthetic with its clever scene cuts, slow motion, and classic rock soundtrack only ups the fun factor. The characters are one-note but they’re all you need for this kind of romp (though the surprisingly touching end credits with Reilly’s hilarious Marlow adds a nice bonus arc).
7.5/10 (Really Good)
A film crew goes to a tropical island for an exotic location shoot and discovers a colossal giant gorilla who takes a shine to their female blonde star. Then he’s captured and brought back to New York City for public exhibition. (IMDb)
The stop-motion animation–remarkable for its time–remains effective even now; at the very least, its spectacular ambition must be lauded, as three battles with fellow animal giants are added to Kong’s famed New York escapades (the panorama of him climbing the Empire State building is a standout shot), though it prevents the story’s intriguing themes of greed and anthropocentrism from fully developing (Denham’s ambition is captured well but his foolishness is dismissed in an “all’s well” ending).