Quick-Thoughts: Peter Jackson’s King Kong (2005)

Review of the Theatrical Cut

Well, that’s one way of remaking Mulholland Drive.

This is actually my first time seeing Peter Jackson’s remake of King Kong in full — I’ve seen bits and pieces of it as a kid — but hot damn I did not expect for how absolutely BRUTAL this movie was going to be, especially after being exposed to Kong: Skull Island, which in no way near captures the menace you feel on this island; it’s complete child’s play put alongside this! The second act of this movie feels exactly like that King Kong Universal Studios Tour attraction which Jackson also crafted, but exhilarated into an entire hour of creature-feature mayhem, and it’s just mind-boggling to see such a studio-built blockbuster event actually deliver on its promise of constant mass-scaled action. The CGI and green screen holds up fairly, yet it’s Jackson’s understanding of resourceful scenario-play that has you on ice throughout, and also his beautiful inclination to just not give a f**k about killing off SO MANY people in the gnarliest of ways whenever he feels like it — PG-13 movies, what happened in recent days? Overtime, I also warmed up to Jackson’s use of anomic slow-mo as well, which was just terrifyingly effective. The use of orange and blue though during that nighttime sacrifice sequence genuinely had my jaw dropped dead; thank you Temple of Doom

Almost every character arc in this is sort of laughably melodramatic howbeit, and it’s at the expense of pushing forward the mixed-bag plot in the directions it needs to go. Walsh, Boyens, and Jackson’s dialogue was a bit overly dramatic, blatant, and poetic for me too, taking me out a little at times. The classic dynamic between Kong and Ann however is sufficient in this 21st century revamp: the loner finally finds peace in her relational affairs despite being in a world surrounded by men, and it happens to be one with a simple-minded animal that did the trick; the innocence of the two’s partnership is what wins me over in a movie that’s mainly filled with people and creatures who just want to mindlessly destroy everything in their path as it fits snuggly with our organistic  hostilities. It pairs really well with the Godzilla story as well, and the whole concept of financial greed being the one to insight disaster on other species and ourselves, descending us farther away from connection and sympathy as we slowly lose touch with nature. 

Verdict: B

“King Kong” is now available to rent on Amazon Prime.

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