Wednesday, 3 November 2010

King Kong (1933) Review

King Kong (1933)
Directed By: Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack.

Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack directed the original King Kong in 1933, which to this day remains one of Universal Studios most treasured movies.

We see the plot built up for everyone, including the characters aboard this ship that has a mystery destination which no one knows, except one man, Carl Denham (Robert Armstrong); it seems that his mission in life is to give other something they have never seen before, and his final destination will be his holy grail.

Anyone who watches King Kong will be impressed with the set design; it ranges from typical 30’s streets with classic cars and buildings, of course this would be modern in production of the movie; we also get insight into the ship which the story revolves around, it is quite clear from the structure and design of the ship, that its usual purpose is for transport. We also gain Skull Island, the residence to King Kong and his native neighbours, we see a generalisation of tribesmen, which show straw huts and grass skirts. Finally we see the amazon jungle where Kong is ‘trapped’ aside from the usual animals of birds and monkeys we also see large lizards and prehistoric creatures, which considering the creatures that lived there, you would imagine more prehistoric characteristics for the set, for example, pre-historical plants as well as tracks from these animals and other signals of their existence…

“Besides Kong in the jungle among other freaks to appear are a triceratops, a brontosaurus, a tyrannosaurus, a pterodactyl and a 60-foot snake.”

Reasoning for lacking evidence towards the residence of the island, would definitely be due to the time period, which when watching Kong, should be the thought in the foreground of your mind.

“It is no longer the 1930s, however. By today's slick standards, King Kong has aged, and it's debatable how kind the passage of years has been”

King Kong can also be seen as a sexual venture of one man’s obsession for beauty, in this case Kong and Ann Darrow (Fay Wray) clear examples of Kong’s curiosity range from him touching young Darrow and sniffing his fingers, considering the production time of the film this could be seen very vulgar and unnecessary. Other hints that are more obvious would be the need for Kong to find his beauty, and keep her away from anyone else, this gives evidence of reasoning for him to climb the Empire State building, and of course being shot down, this could be shown that all love, obsession and greed has a limit.

“Staging a screen test for Ann, Denham dresses her as a fairytale princess ("The beauty and the beast costume") and coaches her in screaming at nothing”

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