Let me start with saying that I’m not a big King Kong fan. I really don’t care about the black and white original and although I reasonably enjoyed the overlong Peter Jackson (2005) version, it made little lasting impact on me. He’s just a Gorilla… but bigger. I have the same issue with Godzilla except I put Godzilla above Kong due to the fact he’s a monster and that makes him cooler.
The opening scene of Kong: Skull Island caught me off guard. Even my son asked ‘is this the film?’ .
We see Kong in these first few minutes rather than the drip feed of the usual monster kind. It’s breathtaking in its delivery and you soon realise this is a fresh approach to an old idea.
It takes a very Jurassic Park approach, with John Goodman as a kind of John Hammond character who gets helecoptered on by soldier Samuel L Jackson who himself plays Colonel Kurtz from Apocalypse Now during the Vietnam war. That’s how much of a fresh mix it is.
The wonderful Brie Larson is a photographer -(Julianne Moore in Jurassic Park 2 a-like) who is brought along to document whatever the hell is making ships and planes go missing on this mysterious island which by the way, is surrounded by a perpetual storm of ferocious intent.
There are other incidental characters filling out the soldiers outfit but they are filler for the lead actor. That being Tom Hiddleston. In a King Kong movie? Are you sure?
Well yes, since this is directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts who directed Kings Of Summer, which is great by the way.
There’s so many directorial choices such as slow motion and audio silences plus snazzily written location titles in between scenes. It all looks so fresh.
But Kong himself isn’t all that lurks on the island. There are some wonderful other giant bugs and oddities which even best Avatar in their amazingness. The huge beasts are an amazing sight for cast and audience alike.
That’s not all. There’s an islander played by John C Reilly who is nutty due to being (sort of) alone for ‘some’ time.
This whole concoction makes for a feast of entertainment which blew my socks off.
But! And it’s only fair to explain this. I did think to myself on many occasions “it’s like a Michael Bay Kong movie!”.
That is a very divisive statement.
I enjoy dumb loud films such as Transformers and Battleship and that kind of thing, but for many, that is awful.
But I advise you to go see Kong:Skull Island and see if it’s possible to watch the POST CREDIT SCENE and not tremble with excitement!!!