2017 | 1 hour 58 minutes | Dir. Jordan Vogt- Roberts | Warner Bros.
The latest King Kong delivers big- budget B movie thrills.
Kong: Skull Island takes place at the tail end of the Vietnam war. A couple of scientists (John Goodman and Houston Brooks) want to “investigate satellite images of the last unexplored terrain on Earth”, aka rustle up some monsters. When Kong derails the mapping mission, survivors must find a way to reach the north side of the island in time for rescue.
The entire premise hinges on a few very bad ideas. Samuel L Jackson stampedes through the jungle with a mosquito net on his head like an angry idiot on a worthless vendetta against Kong. Samuel L. Jackson will do anything for a bacon sandwich these days.
Peacekeeper Conrad (Tom Hiddleston) spends a lot of time waving around his massive arms. Would- be photojournalist Mason (Brie Larson, Oscar winner) runs around with her amazing boobs. They find Marlow (John C. Reilly), a WWII castaway trapped on the island. If you caught the Heart of Darkness references, good for you. The film says almost nothing about how the jungle turns people into animals, but it does offer a good message about how humans generally shouldn’t bomb the Earth.
Kong: Skull Island has some of the most creative photography I’ve ever seen. We see a subsiding storm behind a Richard Nixon bobblehead, action spliced between bright blue pterodactyl blood, secret images, tracking shots of animal upchuck, and a close- up of a can of beans, just to name a few. This cinematography team had fun.
The film features hot monster- on- monster action and a banging 70’s soundtrack. It loses itself around the end and tries to be a sappy war drama. Stay after the credits for a teaser. Spoiler after the jump.