Movie Review: King Kong

Peter Jackson made the studios billions with his Lord of the Rings trilogy. They were a critical and financial success. His mastery of both directing and of managing costs puts him in a truly unique place in the movie biz. He can do whatever project he wants and people will fund it simply because he is involved.

There is another artist with a similar cachet, JK Rowlings.

And after suffering through King Kong, I am struck by a certain similarity between the two.

No one wants to edit JK Rowlings’ books.

No one wants to touch Peter Jackson’s art.

Unfortunately, in both cases, the art suffers.

The story of King Kong is well known, and Peter Jackson never strays. All he does is add technology, superior acting, better camera work and a lot more time to a story that could be said in less.

king kong

And much like kong, we’re frustrated that that was all he did.

One curious observation, in his Lord of the Rings saga, the end of the third film seemed to drag on forever. I was convinced this is a reflection of the material, not the director. King Kong seemed to linger on forever, both the film and the ape, before the end. So much so that the impact of the end was dissipated in anticipation of getting out of the theater

Naomi Watts as the woman in distress was very good. Anthony Serkis continues to be the best actor to not appear in the flesh.  Adrien Brody was convincing in his role as tormented play-write.

The actor who impressed me was Jack Black. Originally, I thought he was incapable of playing a dramatic role. And for a while his character Carl Denham appears to be the comic relief, but towards the end he manages to steal the show. Which given that that’s when the ape rampages through the city, should tell you something.

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