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King Kong

Starring: Noami Watts, Adrien Brody, Andy Serkis, Jack Black and Kyle Chandler
Diected by: Peter Jackson

Soundtrack Review

 

 

Bluntly speaking? Director Peter Jackson is the reigning king of the epic spectacular with his brand of Kong. This is what they try to say when you hear, "An experience awaits you at the movies," folks. Though, wincing may commence at the thought of this new King Kong incarnation running into three hours long, as it is a known tale, and has been done many times before. But, King Kong Jackson style is so heart touching, so visually remarkable and really - aside from Adrien Brody's character's way-over-top insta-in-love infected by the smit bug's venom with full blown smittenidous - the film seems to fly by. Naomi Watts' performance, as the beauty that befriended the beast, is moving and touching. She brings a heaping helping of soul layered into a bazillion eye boggling special effects (the bar has been raised yet again in the wizardry of computer art...).

Story goes…Maniacal movie producer and director Carl Denham (Jack Black) is about to lose his latest film to cost conscious studio heads. But, he's not about to let that happen. He wants, and expects, his latest film to be an adventure yarn audiences will line up to pay the day's rate of twenty-five cents to see.

The studio, however, wants to pull-the-plug now before the behemoth flop sucks in one more cent…exiting stage left, Carl by shear will, determination and ego-goggles, manages to finagle a quick boat to china, or rather to uncharted waters where he has learned there may lay an island lost in time (<-cue spooky James Newton Howard or Max Steiner music for your auditory pleasure…).

Carl's in a whirl and, with his motley crew of film pioneers in tow, shall set sail at dusk…

Meanwhile, Broadway's Vaudeville Theater District is being hit by the country's ongoing depression pretty hard. Comedienne Ann Darrow's (Naomi Watts) act has been shut down. Now, the once starry-eyed performer is heading toward the skid row of washed up thespians with good legs and empty stomachs - she may take a job in the dreaded sleazstack arena of...Burlesque.

But before you go looking for Miss Darrow in tight tiny tops and flirty fishnets, she is lucky enough to meet Mr. Denham, who just so happens to have a role to fill in his little film on the run. He offers her a job provided she can, or rather will, be on the boat heading to "the orient" to shoot this evening…

Reluctantly, and with a particularly pretty job of professional schmoozing producer-style on Black's, err I mean, Denham's part, poor Ann accepts as fate smiles from above and cupid starts to jig in anticipation of the forth coming trio of heart play; and off we go.

By the hair of his chin, Carl has managed to get out of port on a questionable ship, with a questionable crew, a smidge of questionable plot devises (crates of chloroform and lack of sleeping quarters - ahem), and be en route to a questionable locale.

On board The Flying Dutchman wanna be, aka The Venture, is a captured playwright - Ann's favorite playwright - and boy wonder of Broadway, Mr. Jack Driscoll (Adrien Brody). He promised to help write a script for Carl, but when he produces a mere beginning, Carl, raising an eyebrow, decides what's one more little lie in his growing encyclopedic volume of tall tales to meet his own fame and fortune driven means.

The voyage is hard and long…but love blooms 'tween the poet and the actress. But a different kind of love will soon face Miss Darrow.

Director Jackson takes his time setting all these superfluous secondary characters up and in some cases it is a tad-of-a-test in one's adoration of the time-tested tale… But once we all arrive at the hidden island, shimmy into the dense world of lost creatures, and the Kong fella starts battling his bountiful dinosaur nemeses, all while giagantoroius bugs start clickering and flickering about, those longer - dwelling - moments and grandiose manipulating editing tricks are firmly forgiven. You are drawn up and into the magic of Kong. From the multiple homage's to the original Kong, to the great apes's inevitable capture, down to his "unveiling" back in Gotham City, King Kong circa 2005 is a glorious film. The cast is superb, heck, Kyle Chandler shows as a hilarious send-up of a B Film Grade Gable-esque star of Woodsian-style flicks, and Andy Serkis - who is the human prop behind the big hairy ape - manages to bring a special charm and humor to the magnificent eighth wonder of the world. Kids, King Kong Lives. Enjoy.

Snack recommendation: Nadda for fear you may need your monogrammed MPB (movie puke bag) during the "down in the dark dank crevice scenes," and Andy Serkis' 86-ing…

 


 

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