King Kong Reviews
Not only this, but the three hours feels even longer given that everyone knows how the film will end from the beginning. For more than an hour, we have to wait for the human characters to reach the island and meet Kong, but since everyone already knows its going to happen, we're just left wondering how much longer until we get to the point. The bigger problem is that King Kong's most iconic scene is at the end. Everyone who thinks of King Kong thinks of the Empire State Building, so from the first second of the movie, we know exactly what will be in the last moments. Again, Jackson makes sure every minute is a spectacle worth seeing, but those minutes add up.
The human cast is composed of unique and interesting characters, the best of them played by Adrian Brody, Kyle Chandler, and Jamie Bell, but Jackson really miscast the main lead. Jack Black does a good job in a mostly serious role, but its still hard to take him seriously when you automatically find yourself expecting a punchline from him every time he talks. Credit must also be given to motion capture actor Andy Serkis, who is probably the only man who could do justice to King Kong. Unfortunately, the monkey himself isn't a very compelling character. We're supposed to sympathise with him and recognize his human-like emotion, but his affection is shown through blank, unreadable glares. It doesn't work.
The only thing keeping this slog from dipping into utter boredom are the character interactions, which disappear completely towards the end, and the action scenes. The action moments may already look dated less than a decade later (the green screens are hilariously obvious), but they're so huge, so epic, and so increasingly ridiculous that you can't help but appreciate them. What's better than one T-Rex? Ten. Now how about all of them fighting a giant gorilla. That's better. Most of these scenes are far too long, and just as unnecessary as the first hour. There is a scene with giant bugs that is probably the single most pointless fight scene I've ever seen in a movie.
To recap, King Kong looks great. It has some talented cast members. It has memorable action moments. Its plot is also a mess. And the biggest obstacle is that its too long. Watch at your own peril, because it could possibly put you to sleep before its best moments even kick in. You'll also most likely be unsatisfied by its ending. But its also really well-done. That might be enough...
This new version reminded me of many classic old monster flicks like 'Journey to the Centre of the Earth' and 'Clash of the Titans' rolled into one, everything from swamps beasties to giant bats to giant leech things manage to devour the hapless seafarers on their adventure into the unknown. Of course cgi is in extremely heavy use for this film with many creatures looking really good yet some maybe not so, sequences involving the cast amongst dinosaurs do tend to come off rather badly and obvious considering it was only made in 05, not just the creatures though as allot of vistas and scenes with cast in the foreground did look very fake from time to time with clear use of bluescreen.
Not quite up to the standards of Spielberg and his 'Jurassic Park' or recent monster flicks but this is easily forgiven as the film is such a fun ride. Starting in New York, with some of the best cgi of the film for sure, the film is grand in presentation and alive with colour and activity as 30's NY is amazingly reconstructed perfectly. We meet the cast and slowly get to known them alittle bit at a time which is unusual for a blockbuster frankly plus this makes up much of the three hour film time. To be honest all cast members are just about fine for their roles accept Jack Black who for me just isn't the right kind of actor for this type of film, he looked the part but came across as restrained and uncomfortable as he's more used to basically being unpredictably insane. Brody also didn't really impress me here with his odd mop of straightened hair and dull awkward performance, hardly a leading man in looks and not really overly effective as an action man either, bad choice in my opinion where as the original choice of Clooney I think would have fitted the bill and era much better.
The effects of course are the main talking point of the film with a mammoth amount of cgi being used and for the most part its all good. New York is a gem when viewed on Bluray, the sea sequences are decent but atad shaky here and there much like the dinosaurs but of course the main attraction is Kong himself who looks spot on and impressively fierce. Must admit I did keep thinking of 'Mighty Joe Young' whenever I saw him haha but Kong does look the business for sure, sequences where he fights the V Rex's are simply brilliant stuff and do the original proud by also managing to recreate move for move most of the old film.
Easily the best monster mash moments involve Kong fighting and roaring, motion capture is finely tuned to make Kong appear as a real gorilla should, his hair is dark and straight, hands and body move as they should in reality, his huffing and puffing is wonderfully done and most impressively they manage to give Kong a soul, a sparkle from within that makes you care for him, you want him to survive with his damsel and seeing him play with 'Darrow' as they build their friendship you really begin to love the big guy, more than you think you could ever do with a computer generated character.
The finale as we know would be impressive and it is right from the get go, Kong atop the Empire State Building is an awesome sight, it just looks damn good, the cam angles used as the bi-planes swarm around and swoop past make you feel the speed and do cause tension combining the height involved and the ever knowing outcome. I must admit I was sweating a touch as Kong leaps from his tiny perch so high up, at the same time you so want him to live and not get killed, the final moment with Darrow in the end is poignant as the score swells and what we all know happens, many kudos to the team for bringing so much to life in these moments.
There really is so much you could say about this film as so much happens and with tonnes of visual flare and panache. Its not totally perfect of course but to be honest the little problems tend to add to the charm of the film. The always handy monster chow that never seems to deplete....in the form of the scurvy sailors haha there's always one or two sailors around to be eaten by the latest monster to rear its head or if not eaten then get hurled against a huge rock, crushed underfoot or thrown into a deep ravine haha just like the films of old. As said the sequences with cast in the same shot as cgi elements can be dodgy, the Brontosaurus rampage is particularly iffy looking if truth be told.
Must add that some of the action sequences do get abit beyond the realms of acceptance if that's possible hehe the way Kong fights the Dino's and hurls Darrow around in his hands and feet is abit too crazy really, surely she would have been killed of a heart attack or broken limbs by the end of it hehe.
Could nitpick but I won't as the film is a highly enjoyable Indy, Harryhausen safari type romp with everything you could need for pure 100% escapism and adventure, the only thing missing is an erupting volcano.
King Kong is just about as epic as movies can come. Peter Jackson did an amazing job with this remake. The movie is extremely long and for a lot of people that is a problem. Not for me, I love long movies. If they are good that is, and this one is great. I love everything about, even the first hour which a lot of people complain about also. Some things are worth being patient for and the last two hours of this movie are definitely among them. Once Kong hits the screen it's two hours of non-stop action and brilliant effects. Endless creature battles, with one of the most epic battles ever; Kong vs. T-Rex. Kong looks absolutely amazing. Every detail of him is flawless. The cast is very good too. I really enjoyed Jack Black and Adrien Brody in this movie and I always love Naomi Watts. The movie looks spectacular and ultimately is a really cool, fun, and entertaining ride. Well worth the three hour running time.
Considering the film's "silly" premise and the fact that it's a remake; this is far from a failure. It has all the necessary action, thrills, and laughs with adequate emotion to place on.
The art direction is gritty, yet fantastical. If there's one complaint it's the ridiculously overplayed ending and the fact that the entire supporting cast is thrown out the window by the final act.
The only negative I can think of is that it's so darn long. In the 1st hour of the movie, it seems like more of a romantic comedy. This might turn off most people with good taste in movies, but I guarantee it get's better. But be aware of the longevity before you see it.
The acting was phenomanal. Some people were angry with Jack Black's preformance as Carl Denham, but I actually quite liked it. It was realistic, deep, and sometimes even emotional. Naomi Watts, after seeing this movie, is a recent addition to my greatest actresses of all time. She did a fantatsic, deep job as Ann Darrow. Adrien Brody was fantastic too. Definatley the right choice for Jack.
Of course, the special affects were amazing. Kong was as realistic as it get's, and I heard it took years to get his appearence right. Thumbs up to Peter Jackson on Kong
The relationship between Kong and Ann, which was weird and uncomfortable in the 1970's remake, is actually emotional in this one. They obviously aren;t in love with each other (That would be disturbing), but they are good friends, and we care when Kong is killed at the end.
The fight scene between the V-Rex and Kong was great, one of the best out there. Better than anything Michael bay did in Transformers.
Overrall, this is quite possibly the greatest remake ever. I reccomend it ONLY to very, very patient movie watchers.