There are certain people in this world who do not shy away from challenges and director Peter Jackson (Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Frighteners) is one of those people. We all were amazed when he took on the making of 3 pictures out of J.R. Tolkien’s beloved Lord Of The Rings trilogy and he emerged triumphant. The pictures were all works of art and the imagination. Well, he also took on the daunting task of remaking the seminal beast film ‘King Kong’. There were probably several reasons why this film had been left alone for nearly 70 years (one of them being that the remake of ‘Godzilla’ had tanked so badly, I’m sure), but Jackson took it on and once again has made a brilliant film.
‘King Kong’, because of the nature of the story, has huge potential to be an incredibly cheesy film (a 25-foot gorilla falls in love with a blonde actress), but in the hands of Peter Jackson it has become a moving film full of incredible visuals. The cinematography, by Andrew Lesnie (Babe, The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers), is beautifully done with much eye candy and stunning shots to look at. The CGI effects are also incredible beating (and I’m sure there will be arguments) even those in The Lord Of The Rings films. King Kong himself is so realistic looking, especially the eyes, it makes you believe in the possibility of a 25-foot gorilla. Once again, actor Andy Serkis (13 Going On 30, The Lord Of The Ring: Return of the King) – Gollum from The Lord Of The Rings films) has created a monster whose motions and mannerisms are incredibly lifelike. The acting in the film is also of very high quality, especially by Naomi Watts, who had to do most of her scenes against a blue screen and still her emotions and physical reactions are believable and bang on. It is quite a competition between her and her friend Nicole Kidman to see who is the best actress from Australia. Like the original 1933 version of ‘King Kong’ I believe that Peter Jackson’s film will go down as a classic.
It is the 1930s in the United States and times are tough for everyone. Carl Denham (Jack Black – Shark Tale, The School of Rock) is a film producer who will not take no for an answer. He has come across the only map of the fabled Skull Island and has decided that he wants to shoot his next picture there. Despite the fact that his backers have told him they will no longer fund his picture and have had the police issue a warrant for his arrest, Denham hires Captain Englehorn (Thomas Kretschmann – Head in the Clouds, The Pianist) to sail to the island.
Denham is not even stopped by the fact that his lead actress has dropped out of the picture. He sees unemployed vaudeville performer Ann Darrow (Naomi Watts – The Ring, 21 Grams) on the streets of New York and convinces her to be in his picture. On the ship he manages to avoid being arrested and to keep scriptwriter Jack Driscoll (Adrien Brody – The Jacket, The Village) on board until the ship sets sail so he cannot get off.
After many days at sea the ship’s crew, including Hayes (Evan Parke – Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, The Replacements) and Jimmy (Jamie Bell – Billy Elliot), start to get nervous. In the midst of a dense fog they finally arrive at Skull Island. Denham and his assistant, Preston (Colin Hanks – Orange County, That Thing You Do!), get everyone into the lifeboats and row to the ominous looking island.
Believing that the island is deserted, Denham starts filming scenes with Ann and co-star Bruce Baxter (Kyle Chandler – Mulholland Falls). Almost immediately, Denham and his crew realize they are not alone. They are attacked by the zombie-like native inhabitants of the island and Ann is taken by them. All the while, the men from the ship keep hearing the incredibly loud roar of some unknown animal. Denham and Driscoll lead an expedition into the jungle in order to try and find Ann and what Denham ends up seeing he cannot believe his eyes!
- Feature Commentary with Director/Co-Writer/Producer Peter Jackson and Co-Writer/Producer Philippa Boyens
- U-Control: The Art Galleries
- My Scenes
- BD-Live Features: My Scenes Sharing
- 2006 Introductions by Peter Jackson
- Recreating the Eighth Wonder: The Making of King Kong
- Production Diaries
- Post Production Diaries
- Deleted Scenes with Introductions
- The Eighth Blunder of the World
- The Making of a Shot: The T-Rex Fight
- Skull Island: A Natural History
- Kong’s New York, 1933
- A Night in Vaudeville
- King Kong Homage
- Pre-Visualization Animatics
- Conceptual Design Video Galleries
- “The Present”
- WETA Collectibles
- The Volkswagen Touareg & King Kong
- Original Trailers
- Digital Copy