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‘Kong: Skull Island’ Film Review


Source: Horror News

“Kong: Skull Island” changes the period of the well-known tale of the giant ape from the 1930s Depression era to the 1970s shortly after the Vietnam War.  The movie throws in some influences from “Apocalypse Now” and “Moby Dick” to add to the spectacle of puny humans and their helicopter gunships being menaced by giant beasts, of whom King Kong is one of the least dangerous and only so when provoked.

After a brief prelude in World War II in which an American and a Japanese pilot are unlucky enough to get shot down on the island, we segue almost 30 years later, when an expedition of scientists escorted by a mercenary unit commanded by Lt. Colonel Preston Packard, played loud and brash by Samuel L. Jackson, land on the island. The expedition is led by a former British SAS officer named James Conrad (a “Heart of Darkness” reference), and includes Mason Weaver, played by Brie Larson, a pacifist, anti-war activist journalist who is pretty sure a secret government conspiracy is afoot. It turns out that he is right, but not quite the way he thinks.

Things go sideways almost immediately.  A lot of men get killed, and helicopters are swatted out of the sky. The remnants have to make a dangerous trek to a part of the island where they know a resupply expedition will rescue them. Along the way, they have to deal with giant lizard creatures known as skullcrawlers, which love devouring the puny humans. Packard goes insane and decides that Kong has to die for killing a lot of his men. In fact, the big ape turns out to be an ally against the skullcrawlers.

In short, the movie is an above-average outing for the genre.