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King Kong

Peter Jackson's epic 2005 remake of King Kong.

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  • Jul 18, 2010


I remember watching the original Kong film back in the day and every one that followed and could not help but be entertained by every one although the first was the best. I have always enjoyed Kong films and have only rooted against him when he took on the greatest of all time in Godzilla. So after years of nothing new when this film was announced I was actually excited about it when normally I would be like "oh man they are going to ruin it". But I had a feeling I was going to like it plus it would introduce Kong to a new audience who may have never watched him before [I will forgive newborns this once but even they should know who Godzilla is, just being born is no excuse for not seeing a Godzilla film]. Of course once I heard Peter Jackson was directing I knew it was in good hands, he was always one of my favorite filmmakers.

Of course we all know the story behind Kong and there have been various Kong movies made but it remains the same. A boat ride to an island while a movie is being made and they happen upon some natives that worship a very large gorilla. Of course that is the story in the simplest terms because there is much more depth than that. There are love stories going on, an adventure tale and so much more. I think it is that well balanced mix that has made not only the original a classic but this remake as well. I will say from the beginning that I truly believe that this film is indeed a classic remake or not, Peter Jackson did a remarkable job with this film.

Failing filmmaker Carl Denham [Jack Black] is looking for something big that will send him into superstardom, he may just have heard of the place to do that but first he must convince some investors to back him. Unfortunately they decline so Carl does what any ambitious person would do, steal everything and go on the run hoping to leave before they can catch him. In doing so he meets a young actress named Ann Darrow [Naomi Watts] and convinces her that she is perfect for the part of his female lead. He also tricks his writer Jack Driscoll [Adrien Brody] into getting stuck on the boat therefore having to go along as well. When they make it to the island [only a few even knew about it] they are surprised by a vicious tribe of natives that want a sacrifice for something very big that lives in the jungle.

When Ann is taken by this unseen creature the crew and such go after her going on the adventure of a lifetime. It is during this time that the film switches from a drama into an adventure flick and all kinds of crazy things happen. From giants to creatures to vicious terrain these people must make their way through it to find the girl. Now I am sure that you all know at least that the girl is found and brought back to New York. But there is something else that is brought back with her, and that is the mighty Kong. Kong is brought back to be a tourist attraction and labeled as one of the marvels of the world. But it is here that everything goes sour for everyone in NY and leads to the infamous final scenes of the Kong films involving Kong, a girl, a building, and some planes.

I have to say that remake or not this could easily be in the best films of all time and to be honest it could have swept the Oscars and rightfully have done so. But it was not nominated enough in my opinion, it did when 3 for what it was nominated for. The thing I was most surprised at was that Jack Black was not even nominated for best supporting actor, I still think he could have easily won it. Speaking of that the acting in this film is wonderful and fits the time period it is told in. the film has that old school classic Hollywood style and the acting matches it. Like I said Jack Black surprised a lot of people with this film, he did a great job taking his comedic style out and adapting the high energy he gives off in those performances into the maniac he plays in this. Also Adrien Brody does a marvelous job here and gives another career performance here, he was perfectly cast much like Black. Naomi Watts brings that classic Hollywood style to this film and likewise does an excellent job here, she comes off as the classic beauty. Thomas Kretschmann, Colin Hanks, Andy Serkis, Evan Parke and well everyone in this film give excellent performances.

Peter Jackson and his fellow writers did an excellent job with this film making it more that just a new age remake that is full of nothing but action. The film is full of multi dimensional characters, action, drama, romance, adventure, and well everything you can think of. The film transitions from comedy to drama during the first part of the film into a voyage film out on the sea into a horror/adventure film on the island, all the way back into a drama and romance flawlessly. It truly is amazing how Jackson and company were able to so with this film and this extended edition only adds to the magical film that is "King Kong".

This three disc extended addition not only adds to the scenes in the film it also adds to the extras as well. Over three discs we are treated to some of the best special features I have ever seen on any release. There are some of the best behind the scenes and making of features that have ever been released as well as some great additional extras like a short film that the cast made for Jackson for his birthday. That film is also very well done and very funny. Of course there is an excellent commentary by Peter Jackson as well as so much more that only add to the replay value of this release.

I highly recommend owning this 3-disc extended edition because not only is the film great but the extras alone make this worth owning. I paid top dollar but now you could find it cheap used or something but I wouldn't let it go. My brother and I watched this again not to long ago and had a great time doing so. KIA thanks for bringing this back to my attention.

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July 19, 2010
I really liked the added scenes in this extended cut. They played a good part in fleshing out the story and added some good intense scenes. Nice review!
July 19, 2010
Thanks WP
More King Kong (2005 movie) reviews
review by . September 10, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
**** out of ****     After finishing his breathe-taking "Lord of the Rings" film trilogy, Peter Jackson realized that he still had the rest of his entire career ahead of him; and he intended to use whatever time he had left. He has, since the "LOTR" films, made but two films; one of them great, one bad. And luckily for me and for you, we're talking about the better film; which is "King Kong". There's a name you may not; or at least, you should know it. It's the name that comes …
review by . December 12, 2010
Stephanie's Favourite Movies: King Kong      If anyone can do grandeur, it's Peter Jackson. I mean, it's the mastermind behind the LOTR films. He is the one that can make a true monster epic for our time, and King Kong is definitely that. Great effects, great acting, great story, just general greatness. Some say that it was too long, I say that you need that much time to tell the story. Some say Adrien Brody isn't hero material. I say that he did just fine.   …
review by . August 23, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Peter Jackson's remake of the 1933 King Kong is exactly how to do a remake. This movie keeps to the spirit of the original, whilst including state of the art special effects and exciting action scenes. Jackson didn't try to add any silly plot twists or change the setting to 2005, but rather set out to remake the original film as it stood. He deserves a lot of credit for resisting the urge to "improve" the basic plot structure and settings of the original King Kong.   …
review by . August 22, 2010
Peter Jackson's remake of the 1933 King Kong is exactly how to do a remake. This movie keeps to the spirit of the original, whilst including state of the art special effects and exciting action scenes. Jackson didn't try to add any silly plot twists or change the setting to 2005, but rather set out to remake the original film as it stood. He deserves a lot of credit for resisting the urge to "improve" the basic plot structure and settings of the original King Kong.     The only …
review by . August 19, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
Right after Lord of the Rings became such a smash success at the Box Office and the Academy Awards, Peter Jackson set out to do a film he just about always wanted to do: King Kong.  Peter Jackson talked about how much he enjoyed the film.  And for the most part, King Kong really sounded like a movie Jackson should do.  It could've been a huge epic!  Yeah!  And Peter Jackson does make it an epic.  But when making such an epic where exactly does the line get drawn?  …
review by . July 15, 2009
Peter Jackson's King King is an excellent film.  I was surprised by how well it was made.  The direction, photography, acting and special effects were just fantastic.  I usually have negative opinions of big budget remakes but this one is excellent.  Even Jack Black is good in this film (I an not a fan of his other work) and I'm impressed how Peter Jackson managed to get a very good performance out of him,  Naomi Watts redefines the role of Fay Wray and Adrien Brody …
review by . February 11, 2009
It's the height of the Depression in New York City, and down-on-her-luck actress Ann Darrow (Naomi Watts) accepts movie director Carl Denham's (Jack Black) offer to sail off for an adventure and make a movie. Playwright/screenwriter Jack Driscoll (Adrien Brody) gets stuck on board and they all sail off for Skull Island, a mysterious place that just happens to be the home of bloodthirsty natives, prehistoric animals, and a 25-foot tall ape called Kong. When the natives kidnap Ann and sacrifice her …
review by . April 29, 2009
This movie was excellent. It borrows a lot from the original with incredible special effects and amazing recreations of 1931 New York! King Kong finally moves like a real gorilla and the destruction that gets wrecked throughout the movie is very convincing! The natives of this movie look like something out of the Exorcist although there was a tribute to the original natives during the scene where Kong is displayed to the New York public at the theater.     There are a lot more …
review by . November 22, 2008
Pretty girl meets monster ape   King Kong has got his charm   In all the most romantic scenes   The girl is on his arm     Naomi's got the strongest arms   She must be doing curls   But Kong has got the safest paws   For catching falling girls     Packed to the brim with CGI   This movie's much too long   Stampeding dinos, "Tremors" worms   Some parts just don't belong …
review by . June 13, 2008
4.5/5 Stars     This remake of one of the most cherished films of all time wins an award for something, a minor one, but still an award and that is that it's probably the best remake of all time. Not much considering its competition, but still it's something. King Kong (2005) is certainly worth a look, but I must say some critical response to the running time of over three hours considering it could easily be two hours and still give the same level of emotion, but in the end …
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The extended version of Peter Jackson'sKing Kongadds 13 minutes to the running time--fortunately those 13 minutes include two dynamic action scenes and no material has been added to the movie's belabored set-up, which tries to give depth to these quintessentially b-movie characters with a clumsy patchwork of melodrama and in-jokes. But once movie-maker Carl Denham (Jack Black,School of Rock) and his crew finally arrive at Skull Island, the movie kicks into gear with spectacular action, technical wizardry, and genuine feeling. ThoughKongseems crafted to dazzle the eye on the giant screen, the overlong structure improves when you can take an intermission at will. At home, each scene can be approached on its own terms, be it the insanely choreographed battle between Kong and three T. Rexes or the subtle and multi-layered interplay between Ann Darrow (Naomi Watts,Mulholland Drive) and Kong (played, through motion-capture technology, by Andy Serkis, who previously played the similarly animated Gollum in Jackson'sLord of the Rings). The addition of a rampaging ceratops and an underwater race with what the movie's crew dubbed a "piranhadon" not only add more eye candy, but provide some valuable moments of character development. But in the end, that's frosting on the cake; when the movie's weaknesses and strengths are weighed, the emotional power of the fantastical relationship between a woman and a giant ape is a real cinematic achievement.--Bret ...
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Director: Peter Jackson
Genre: Action, Adventure
Release Date: December 14, 2005
MPAA Rating: PG-13
DVD Release Date: March 28, 2006
Runtime: 3hr 8min
Studio: Universal Studios, Wingnut Films
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