Guess What? Kong’s Not Real

by December Lambeth on December 14, 2005

in Movie Reviews 

Just to ruffle a few feathers with my fellow Razorfine critics (and give you a different perspective), I’m going to try to take the high ground and be positive. Which wont be easy given the film is way too long, and there are massive issues with construction, characters, plot, story, and well….hell just about everything. But let’s not forget that this film is make believe, and was created to entertain the masses.  And folks, critics are not the masses. We have become overbearing and extremely judgmental in our movie going experiences, and see things for what they really are instead of the fantasy world this type of entertainment is made for. 

People will hate the fact that it takes roughly an hour to see Kong, and they have to spend so much time getting to know characters that they don’t give a shit about (nor will they).  They want Kong.  Jackson, what is wrong with you?  People want 10 maybe 20 minutes of character building and then you need to give them the juice. Audiences are going to drool, squirm, eek, scream and jump at every monster that pops out and either crushes, devoirs or decapitates the ship’s crew. The audience won’t notice Kong comes in various sizes, or that his face never quite matches up. They won’t catch on to a New York playwright becoming a master of the jungle and conquers all odds to save the girl only to get back to the ship in 10 minutes. And really, who is going to see the vast difference in the CGI quality Jurassic Park has over Kong in the dinosaur scenes?

King Kong
2 Stars

It’s sad to think that this was Jackson’s dream, and that even after 3 hours and 11 minutes he still came up short, but don’t be shocked if it gets considered for some form of Hollywood glamour award; it’s big, it’s long, it’s Kong.

King Kong gives an award winning performance (accompanied by some great facial expressions), and Naomi Watts, as the beautiful Ann Darrow, pulls off fairly impressive moves against a blue screen (not to mention a make believe leading man). As for the rest of the film’s talent, who cares? Jack Black plays the self-indulgent film producer, Carl Denham, who looses his touch on reality halfway through.  There’s also Adrian Brody as master of the jungle and stud playwright Jack Driscoll, and Thomas Kretschmann as the ever hero Captain Englehorn; they were in The Pianist, what else do you need to know? Everyone else gets crushed, except Colin Hanks who plays Carl’s assistant and Jamie Bell as the little boy with a big heart; consensus says he should have died.

Most of the CGI stuff works, but when it doesn’t work it really doesn’t work.  Pole-vaulting(!) natives, a multitude of dinosaurs and a few aspects of Kong’s physical build and face to name a few of the other computer generated moments that go awry. However, costuming and the set design for New York during The Great Depression is quite impressive.

To sum King Kong up in 3 sections would be quite easy. Section1 is long and boring: meet the characters, check the plot and wait for Kong. Section 2 is the Skull Island adventure:, natives more scary than a massive attack of creepy crawlers, freakish vampire bats, and more action than you can shake a tree full of shipmates at. Section 3 back to the city: Kong is lovelorn and Ann, in an effort to save the poor beast, climbs the Empire State Building in heels and screams at planes. The End.


King Kong is what it is: 3 hours of fantasy entertainment that could have easily been cut down to 2. Rest assure with that running time you’re at least getting your money’s worth.

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