The Very First KING KONG Review… That Is Written By Vern!!


Hi, everyone. “Moriarty” here with some Rumblings From The Lab…

Okay, so it’s not the first one ever. Or even in the first hundred at this point. But it’s before mine, and it’s by Vern, so there’s two things it’s got going for it. Check this out:

What’s up fellas –

I heard some shit about your butts were numb or something like that. Sorry to hear about that I hope you get well soon.

Anyway here’s the deal. I saw KING KONG. Not sure if you know about this one but it is a remake of an older picture from ’33 or so. This version is by Pete Jackson who won an Oscar, etc. You LORD OF THE RINGS fans will know who I’m talking about. If not there is always the internet. I’m not sure if they have IMDB translated into elfish, but I’m sure you can find the information somewhere or other.

King KongBasically the plot involves a 25 foot tall gorilla, a blonde gal and a prominent New York landmark. (not the statue of liberty.) By the end of the movie the fates of these three may or may not turn out to be intertwined. I don’t want to give too much away.

Okay I’ll be more specific. The movie is basically divided into two movements. First movement is the movie crew heading to this place Skull Island (don’t go there) where they meet the gorilla, who we will call Kong. Also there are dinosaurs, giant worms, giant bats, angry natives, skeletons (dead), things you can fall off of, and that sort of shit. Second movement, the action repeats itself in New York. (there are not giant worms and shit in New York though. sorry.)

I must admit that this is not a 100% perfect movie descended from Heaven in the form of pure celluloid energy never touched by man. The main flaw is that it takes its sweet time getting to the island and our boy Kong. Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t mind that this is a 3 hour movie. I’m thankful for the 3 hours. It would take a no good rat soup eating motherfucker to complain about a movie this good being 3 hours long. Oh boo hoo, they spent extra time and money trying to entertain you. They sacrificed box office by limiting the amount of showings per day, what bastards! I’m sorry if you have to piss real bad and it causes bladder hemhoraging or something horrible like that, but otherwise you shouldn’t complain. I mean Harry and his friends over there just watched this and ten or so other movies IN A ROW. Admittedly, those people are clearly insane, but their journey is only one of the many indiciations that it is technically possible to take 3 hours out of your busy schedule of whining to watch a great movie.

THAT SAID, they coulda got to the island faster. Maybe a little less of the Ann Darrow embarasses herself routines. I would be willing to trade some of the human setup for some bonus Kong. But anyway they set up these human characters and they boat around for a while but when they finally get to the point where Ann Darrow is kidnapped by savages of indistinct race and offered to Kong… HOLY SHIT, this movie takes off like a bunch of actors running from a bunch of dinosaurs.

I liked LORD OF THE RINGS as much as the next guy, assuming the next guy does not speak elfish or carry a sword. But I gotta admit, I was not prepared for how amazing the character of Kong is. I didn’t expect it. I seen ape movies before and I didn’t realize you could have this big a leap ahead of, say, remake Mighty Joe Young or whichever was the last ape movie. This movie is a god damn miracle. It’s not just because they made a great computer program but because they gave this guy personality. Like Gollum, you don’t think of him as a special effect at all, you think of him as a character. In fact, you think of him as a dude you know. And although it’s fun to see your buddy tear a t-rex’s head apart or get mad and wipe out the balcony of a theater with one quick arm swipe, he’s not just a raging monster. He does ape things. He lays around and scratches himself. He makes jokes to amuse himself. After he kills the t-rex, he plays with it a little. I don’t think they ever show him taking a shit or masturbating but otherwise it is very realistic.

Kong is played by Andy Serkis (THE ESCAPIST) who also plays the part of “Lumpy.” Who do you think you are dude, Eddie Murphy? Let’s keep it to one role in the future. Anyway, Serkis is basically wearing the greatest ape costume of all time. Don’t worry, I understand that it’s computers and what not. But you figure he is controlling the ape by his movements, he is basically wearing a costume made out of pixels. I’m sure there’s some animation in there too, I don’t know, but whatever they do they end up with very realistic movements, very strong personality, very convincing giant ape the likes of which you’ve never seen.

By the way, this is how you know Kong is a bad motherfucker. He lives on an island populated by all kinds of dinosaurs, giant bugs, bats, and who knows what other crazy shit that we didn’t even see. They found a six foot wide poisonous jellyfish off the coast of Japan recently, who knows what they could have on the undercharted territory of Skull Island. (Some would call it uncharted but since Jack Black had a map to it I think technically it is undercharted.) What I’m getting at is, when a beautiful blond gal washes up on shore, who do the natives try to sacrifice her to? No, not the t-rex. Not the giant bats. They give this chick to Kong. And beautiful blond chicks are not easy to come by in this part of the world. When they snag one they’re not gonna waste it. So they give it to the official baddest motherfucker on Skull Island, which would be Kong, thank you very much.

Also you know he’s a bad motherfucker because of a particular move he does in a fight that could very well top Tyler Durden’s “spitting blood in face” move from FIGHT CLUB for Outstanding Achievement in Fighting Dirty. I won’t give it away but you’ll see it.

So anyway, with a bad motherfucker like that in the starring role, this ends up being a real thrill ride. There’s a certain type of “big event movie thrill ride” that I hate, I don’t really know if there is a name for them so let’s just call them “Stephen Sommers movies.” These are movies that have no rhythm and just toss BIG LOUD ACTION SCENE after BIG LOUD ACTION SCENE in your face and it’s so monotonously loud and big that it’s just boring, it doesn’t involve me. I don’t know why but KING KONG doesn’t feel that way at all, even though there are long ass sections of the movie that are as non-stop and relentless as a Texas chain saw massacre. It doesn’t let up. Basically the section from the first appearance of Kong to when they’re ready to take him off the island (spoiler) is one of the most exciting and amazing extended action scenes I’ve seen in a long god damn time, full of tension and clever dilemmas. I mean if it isn’t one thing (crushed by dinos rolling down a hill) it’s another (head swallowed by giant prehistoric tube worm). And then when you get to New York you’re so emotionally involved in the big guy that it’s even better than the earlier part.

Of course, there is some amount of suspension of the ol’ disbelief involved. First of all, you gotta accept that when people get chased by various giant prehistoric monsters, they are gonna be able to get away most of the time, or at least make a good run for it with the lizardy fuckers snapping at their ass and not quite connecting. The Jason Voorhees principle. You also gotta accept that when people run under the feet of stampeding dinosaurs, only a bunch of them will get crushed. Not all of them. And you have to accept that cute little Naomi Watts can get tossed around like a hacky sack for days on end without losing consciousness or transforming herself into the purplest Naomi Watts-shaped walking bruise you’ve ever seen in your life. Also there may be one or two other very very minor violations of accepted scientific fact. I’m sure the experts on giant prehistoric insects will chime in in the talkbacks.

So you got all kinds of harrowing adventure and what not, but the real kicker on this movie is obviously the tragedy of the whole thing. I mean, clearly Ann Darrow has a bad day. First her theater gets shut down and she can’t afford food. Then she gets kidnapped by savages and manhandled by a giant gorilla and hangs off the teeth of a falling dinosaur (long story) and all this. But you gotta feel even more for Kong. Because what’s he supposed to do? There’s no winning for Kong. Yeah, so he loves a woman obtained under illicit circumstances. So what. I’m sure worse shit happens on Skull Island every day. Considering where he grew up, he’s a nice guy. And you’d probaly like Naomi Watts too if somebody gave her to you. So for the crime of love and/or gigantism he gets drugged up and taken to New York in chains and put on display. Nobody can blame him for escaping. I’m sure even the guy whose head he bit off in that one awesome part (spoiler) would understand.

So now here he is living in New York just trying to spend some time alone with his girl. This time it’s consensual so get over it, people. Get off his balls. Unfortunately, some people – like the United States Army to name one example – just can’t leave shit alone. They gotta shoot a dude just for being a giant ape. I mean come on people, we need to learn to work shit out without resorting to tommy guns and biplanes all the time. I’m sure if you told him he had to swim back to Skull Island he would give it a shot. Even though it would be bullshit.

What I’m saying is, this poor bastard is doomed. No way anybody’s gonna let him get back to Skull Island. No way anybody’s gonna let him just hang out on tall things and chill like he did at home. And trying to put giant clothes on and pass for human is probaly out of the question too although in my opinion that option is not adequately explored in the movie.

And THANK GOD Kong does not know that the dashing and charismatic Oscar winner Adrien Brody is waiting in the wings to come sweep up Ann Darrow as soon as Kong bites it. That shit would’ve KILLED Kong. If the biplanes didn’t. Which they did. Spoiler.

Anyway, this doomed relationship is very sweet and beautiful. A good giant ape romance. Obviously it’s not gonna work out real well physically and I don’t think Ann Darrow really digs him that way. Maybe it’s not a boyfriend girlfriend deal per se. I’m not sure which one is which one’s pet dog but whatever the deal is you can see why they dig each other. And they do a good job of portraying the whole romance with almost no dialogue at all. Alot of filmatists I think would be tempted to make Ann Darrow talk to Kong non-stop to explain her thoughts to the audience. “Oh no, put me down you big hairball!” and that sort of shit. Peter Jackson though obviously did his research because he knows that apes actually don’t speak English. So she doesn’t waste her time saying things to him that he’s not gonna comprende. The fact that it’s mostly non-verbal makes it all the more sweet and tragic.

I didn’t cry though, come on. Who do you take me for? But it’s a sweet movie.

Ah hell, I’m doin it. I’m goin all caps on this one. THIS IS A GREAT FUCKIN MOVIE. I’m not the world’s all time #1 greatest fan of hyperbole, but I think it’s safe to say this one is a classic, masterpiece, etc. It’s one of those movies that reminds you why you love movies, reminds you that it’s still possible to be amazed. This movie proves the old adage that “If Peter Jackson wants to do something, just let him fucking do it you shitheads.” Especially if that something is a $200 million 3-hour NC-17 sequel to BAD TASTE and that’s why he lost the weight, to reprise his role as Derek.

Seriously Harry, check out this movie, I think you would probaly dig it. Maybe you are not into giant ape movies or Peter Jackson movies as a rule but give it a shot, watch it with an open mind. Also Harry could you burn me a copy of Masters of Horror, I don’t want to pay for Showtime. Don’t tell Moriarty. Nah forget I said anything I’ll deal with this later. Anyway KING KONG motherfucker. KING KONG. That’s all I got to say.



As always, Vern, you humble me. Great review. And I’m calling the cops right now, you pirating bastard. Errrrr… but mostly, great review.

“Moriarty” out.

Originally posted at Ain’t-It-Cool-News: http://www.aintitcool.com/node/22016

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, December 13th, 2005 at 7:05 am and is filed under AICN, Monster, Reviews, Romance. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

4 Responses to “The Very First KING KONG Review… That Is Written By Vern!!”

  1. You didn’t cry? Heartless bastard.

  2. Holy crap. That last kiss-off to Ringbearer was the most devastating takedown I’ve ever seen. It’s almost better that you can’t read Ringbearer’s side. You just have to hear second-hand reports. It’s like some crazy horror movie you only saw stills of in Fangoria. The real thing will never equal what you pictured in your head.

    “We’re gonna work this out buddy I promise. I hope we are still brothers.” I’m actually laughing out loud like you read about.

  3. Rewatching this I am still amazed at the impressive T-Rex battle. Not only does the CG hold up, but the momentum of the fight and how it develop is some impressive dramaturgy that still manages to keep the audience excited as well as knowing what the fuck is going on at ALL TIMES. KONG:SKULL ISLAND did this also, but never had that standout setpiece, even though fighting Hellish Skull-Dinosaur at the end was magnificent, but too brief and way too horizontal. There was no escalation of the sequence, no falling down a cliff or wrapped in vines or amazing shit like that.

    PETER JACKSON´S KING KONG is both emotional as well as spectacular. I still love it. I am grateful for getting another ape-film and more Kong but I doubt it they will get as emotional as we go along. But I don´t want to be caught crying in the theatre like some sissy. I´ll do it in the sad, lonely but miserable comfort of my own home, thank you very much.

  4. I have very mixed feelings about the content of the song (mostly the parts that jokingly turn King Kong into some kind of black power icon. although it obviously happened during more innocent times and was done as some kind of compliment) but dammit, that’s some funky shit!

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