King Kong (DVD, 2006, Anamorphic Widescreen) Reviews
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King Kong (DVD, 2006, Anamorphic Widescreen)

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King Kong --- Peter Jackson Directed, Starring Adrien Brody, Jack Black, and Naomi Watts

Dec 18, 2005
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Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:great special effects, realistic "Kong"

Cons:dialogue, pacing, emotionless, drags in parts

The Bottom Line: This version of the 1933 classic fails in just about every aspect of being a good film.


Everyone knows the story of King Kong. A group of people go to an uncharted island and discover something unexpected: A giant Ape. The ape is brought back to New York City, and mayhem ensues. We all know the story, we all know how it ends, and yet the need was felt to do the story yet again in a pumped up new way. With Peter Jackson coming of his Lord of the Rings movies he could really do no wrong, and even I thought that him being in charge of this movie was adding to the level of excitement that it would present. The great classic King Kong from 1933 was going to be brought to us in 2005 with all of the bells and whistles that the technology of today could provide us. With a great story, a great director, some top notch actors, and millions and millions of dollars, King Kong (2005) was all set to be a smashing success. But will that success go any further than box office cash?

I wanted to like this movie; I really did. I went into it with a lot of excitement and anticipation having been sold on the movie from all the trailers claiming this to be one of the best movies of the year. I was expecting a lot of action, an epic adventure, and a love story at the heart of it all. So who am I to complain that I got everything I asked for? Well call me a hypocrite because I am about to rail this film. First let’s talk about the length of the film. It comes it at 187 minutes (that's 3 hours and 7 minutes), and once you get past the halfway point it all seems to drag until the ending comes on suddenly. The pacing of the movie was not done very well, and instead of giving the audience time to reflect on sequences, or to stop and think about the human and ape interactions, we are swept into another sequence of battling the elements or tribesmen or grotesque animals. Many of these addition sequences were really unneeded and became more a chance to show off technology than actually adding anything real to the film.

In the main roles of the film, Jack Black plays Carl Denham, a film director on his last legs, hoping to finish an epic picture on this island only living in myths. In order to do that he brings on the services of actress Ann Darrow (Naomi Watts) and Screenwriter Jack Driscoll (Adrien Brody). Of course disaster awaits everyone involved, including the 30 or so crew members of the boat taking them to this island of mystery. This island has apparently been lost to the world, and contains bugs of every shape and size, just about every type of dinosaur, and one giant ape who is having virgins sacrificed to him. Of course everything goes wrong, Darrow is kidnapped by the giant ape, and Driscoll must step up and lead a party of people into the wilderness to find the woman he has now fallen in love with. It's a daring premise, and it made the first few interpretations of the film work, but in this version there was nothing worse than the dialogue that we were forced to swallow. The audience that I saw it was laughing again and again at lines that were meant to be serious, and sequences that were intended to be dramatic. Instead of laughing I was looking at my watch, wondering just how I thought this was going to be a great film.

King Kong (2005) is a beautifully shot film, with great special effects, and an ape that really looks pretty real when you think about it. This movie has added a lot of realness that was missing from the original version, but it may have taken away a lot of its "innocence" at the same time. This was supposed to be an improvement on an old classic, but instead was a movie that failed to tread water or be emotional where it needed to be. You could see where you were needing to be sad, and I really wanted to be able to fade into the emotion with the story, because I understood that it should be there. Instead, I was given many one-liners that weren't needed, supporting characters that were thrown in to just take up more screen time, and dialogue that was just simply embarrassing. This film could win awards for its effects, but it isn't one that I ever have to see it again. I was so disappointed that I don't think I will even watch it again when it makes it to television in a few years. Box Office smash? Yes. Great Film? By no stretch of the imagination! I don't recommend seeing this one.









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