Sunday, December 11, 2005


Going Ape

There is something about the primal nature of King Kong that still resonates today. Is it the subtext of man worshiping and then killing a god? Is it notion of a primate more powerful than us? Or is it just that the big hairy ape gets the blonde? Whatever it is, we're just days away from the second (and, one would hope, far superior) remake of King Kong. And this thought comes to mind: Will this be Peter Jackson's Heaven's Gate? Or will it be the fourth in a string of worldwide blockbusters for the director? King Kong, as many movie fans know, is the reason Jackson wanted to make movies. The 1933 original is his favorite film. He has wanted to pay homage to it for some time, but not until the success of his Lord of the Ring trilogy did he get a studio to back him. Unlike the first remake in 1976, Jackson decided to keep this story set in the 1930s and true to the original plot. A wise move. In fact, much of what I've seen about the film, thus far, seems wise, including the casting of Jack Black, Naomi Watts and Adrien Brody. The effects seem amazing. Still, I wonder, has the studio over hyped the film? Will that backfire? Remember Sony Pictures' onslaught of marketing for the remake of Godzilla? The studio was certain, so certain, it had a Titanic-sized hit on its hands. Then the film flopped. But Jackson seems to have delivered the goods. All that's left now is the roar of the crowd.

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