Starring: Naomi Watts, Adrien Brody, Jack Black
Director: Peter Jackson
Running Time: 187 mins
King Kong is an American film about a film crew who goes on a daring mission to a previously undiscovered island to make a movie, but when they arrive, they encounter Kong, a gigantic ape who falls in love with the film’s leading lady.
This may be three hours long, but believe me, that time absolutely flies by. From Peter Jackson, director of Lord Of The Rings (which I’ve never been a fan of), I was not expecting such a consistently engrossing and entertaining watch over such a long running time, but I am delighted to say that King Kong is a truly brilliant film that moves away from a simple blockbuster formula to something a lot more special, and a lot more memorable.
Normally, the thought of Hollywood even thinking of remaking a cinematic classic like King Kong would have film buffs across the land up in arms, but here, Peter Jackson gives such a faithful retelling of the original story, rarely looking at style over substance, and brilliantly retaining the central plot that makes the film so unique.
Yes, there are a lot of special effects here, and that does allow for some bigger action sequences that weren’t there in 1933, but Peter Jackson never shies away from looking at the relationship between Kong and Ann Darrow ahead of the blockbuster action and thrills. Throughout, Naomi Watts gives a brilliant performance, and makes this fairytale story of beauty and the CGI beast so convincing, to the point where I felt hugely touched by their romance.
I adore the original film, but there was something wonderfully elegant about this remake that moved me even more. It’s not a soulless Hollywood cashgrab, and Peter Jackson’s faithful adaptation, along with the exceptional presentation of 1930s New York, prove that this was made with heart and passion throughout, and that, along with the wonderful central story, worked like magic on me, and had me unexpectedly in tears on more than one occasion.
Like I said, there are some action sequences on Skull Island that don’t provide too much for the story’s development, and the runtime, although it goes quickly, is undoubtedly overlong, but this is one of those rare studio blockbusters that tries hard to be entertaining, convincing, emotional and captivating, and it pulls that off beautifully, so that’s why King Kong gets an 8.4 from me.