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#8 ~ King Kong

03 Jul

At three hours and seven minutes one wonders why you would buy the DVD and take it home to watch it. Who has that much time at home to sit through a movie you have already seen in the theater? Well, I do. You miss the punch by watching it in your living room instead of a multi-plex theater, but it’s still a great movie.

Does it proceed the original? Does a remake ever? Things were different in film-making in 1933. We can not even begin to compare the two movies. The 1933 original with Fay Wray is a classic. Peter Jackson’s remake is a masterpiece in CGI. Of course in 1933 no one even heard of computer generated graphics.

The first hour of course is as slow at home as it was in theater, but that first hour was Naomi Watts. All Naomi Watts. I think it was crucial for the entire movie, even if it did kind of lag. After that everything just flowed into an adventure that you don’t miss one minute, and even though the movie IS long, you don’t realize you’ve been sitting for over 180 minutes.

Personally the little show Anne Darrow gave to Kong was a little much for me, but again another crucial need for the film to show the relationship between Beauty and her Beast. It was also unparalleled in showing Kong’s emotion, as was the final scene as he says goodbye and falls to his death.

Does it live up to the original? Oh yes! Does it surpass it. No, not really. What about the Jessica Lange 1977 King Kong? By far. In that remake, once Kong shows up, the whole movie falls apart. The very first sight of Kong is totally unconvincing. The ape suit looks fake and the effects are pretty terrible, often with lines and grainy background footage visible. 1933 special effects were more believable.

Overall, King Kong 2005 was an honest to goodness real movie. The kind that my dad used to watch as a kid when he’d pay 35 cents for a Saturday matinee. Who said they don’t make movies like they used to? Peter Jackson does! B

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