That moment when Samuel L Jackson is staring down a 100 feet tall gorilla, flames blazing around them as helicopter shells burn out and body parts are scattered all over the jungle. That’s the moment you realise sh*t just got real and Kong has returned facing a new enemy.
Kong: Skull Island is the latest reboot by director, Jordan Vogt-Roberts (The Kings of Summer), for the legendary MonsterVerse series. A team of explorers and soldiers travel to an uncharted island in the Pacific, unaware that they are crossing into the domain of monsters, including the mythic Kong.
Kong: Skull Island is basically Apocalypse Now meets Jurassic Park. It is action-packed, fast-paced, and balances the dialogue and tense moments with light humour.
At times it feels as if a lot was cut from the screenwriting and more budget went into the visual effects and that’s okay. It is visually captivating and for someone who is not a fan of 3D, I actually enjoyed this film with my pair of flimsy blue specs.
I particularly enjoyed the sense of nostalgia you get for the original Kong with this gorilla looking and feeling very similar to the upright walking monkey we saw on TV growing up.
Word to the wise though (and in particular 2005 King Kong fans), do not relate this movie to the Peter Jackson masterpiece (in my opinion top five best films), which featured Jack Black, Naomi Watts and Adrian Brody. This is not a prequel or related to that film in any way – not even when it comes to quality of the story or acting. Kong: Skull Island is the ‘Jason Statham’ of King Kong films. Big budget, big monkey, big explosions.
That said, the cast is great, featuring Oscar nominated Brie Larson and acclaimed actors such as Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, John C. Reilly, and John Goodman. But again, it’s a fully loaded action movie, so do not expect emotional scenes of human and animal kindness meeting each other, and transcending the unknown and impossible.
There are so many slow-motion shots in the film, that if you had to take that out, the film would probably be 40 minutes long. But these shots are worth it. Because the director makes sure you experience all the action in amazing detail. From slingshot bodies to helicopters flying in sync over the jungle, to Kong pulling hardcore WrestleMania moves on even bigger creatures.
Kong: Skull Island is directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts, and stars Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, and Tom Hiddleston. It will be in cinemas from 10 March 2017.