Wednesday, December 28, 2005

King Kong (2005)

At the end of the first hour I was swearing to myself that I would never, ever see another Peter Jackson movie.

There are no monsters in the first seventy minutes of the movie, just people getting to Skull Island. You don't need monsters to make a good movie, but apparently Peter Jackson does, because the script is woeful, the exposition is ham-handed, the dialogue is often wretched, and development of some of the characters (e.g., Jimmy) is completely pointless. Even the computer-generated special effects in this part of the movie aren't good, as when the video game ship is tossed on the rocks with little video game people hanging on to the deck.

The movie does take a turn for the better after Kong finally shows up. All the monster special effects look better, maybe because monsters are easier, or because the filmmakers put more effort into them. Action scenes that involve either Kong or other monsters from Skull Island are generally pretty good, but sometimes they violated my suspension of disbelief, e.g.:
  • Apparently blonde starlets are tyrannosaur heroin, even small quantities are worth pursuing at all costs regardless of whatever else may be going on.
  • A person with oversized insects crawling all over him can be safely hosed off with a machine gun, even by someone without prior experience with guns.
  • A taxi driver is driving away from a giant ape. Someone gets in the back of the taxi and asks him to turn around and drive toward the ape. The driver's reaction is to give his taxi to the passenger.
The best parts of the movie are the scenes where Ann Darrow (Naomi Watts) bonds with King Kong. I liked the vaudeville subplot and the portrayal of Kong's interest in Ann Darrow as not necessarily sexual in nature.


At 6:04 PM, December 29, 2005, Blogger Jordan said...

I agree with two of your nits; I would think that a T-Rex would go after the largest piece of meat that it thinks it can handle, and such deadeye aim (especially with an automatic weapon) seems a little much.

However, if a giant ape is after my car, I might indeed jump out; one can more easily hide as an individual than wrapped in tons of metal painted bright yellow. And I would imagine gridlock is bad in 1920s NYC ... even without a giant ape causing confusion.

Still, I enjoyed the movie far more than the original or the Jessica Lange version. It was so awesome to see Kong punch out a T-Rex.


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