In Memoriam 1942 – 2013 “Roger Ebert loved movies.”

RogerEbert.com

Thumb_2nadkgxpifj5yagxnxkqbwjm7me

Love Is Strange

The emotions unleashed by "Love Is Strange" are enormous. It is a patient and, ultimately, transcendent film.

Thumb_expendables_three_ver18

The Expendables 3

If you’re over 40, this is your “The Avengers.” As slavishly devoted to the old action films of Sly and company as any Marvel Universe…

Other Reviews
Review Archives
Thumb_xbepftvyieurxopaxyzgtgtkwgw

Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

Thumb_jrluxpegcv11ostmz1fqha1bkxq

Monsieur Hire

Patrice Leconte's "Monsieur Hire" is a tragedy about loneliness and erotomania, told about two solitary people who have nothing else in common. It involves a…

Other Reviews
Great Movie Archives
Other Articles
Chaz's Blog Archives

Reviews

King Kong Lives

  |  

Nobody gets thrilled in the movies anymore. They've seen it all.

King Kong is a gorilla that stands 50 feet high, and everybody takes him for granted. Four redneck hunters chase him into the woods, for example, and set off some dynamite to trap him under tons of rocks, and then they tease him with burning logs. If these hunters were sensitive and thoughtful like the folks in the National Rifle Association ads, they wouldn't tease Kong, they'd regard him with a sense of quiet awe and reverence, after setting off the dynamite.

Or take the head of the research institute. He's in charge of a project to supply Kong with an artificial heart. When he's informed that the operation is impossible because of Kong's low blood plasma level, he explodes: "That heart cost $17 million!" In real life, he would have cackled, "...and now we're going to need another huge injection of government research funds to study gorilla blood!" The problem with everyone in "King Kong Lives" is that they're in a boring movie, and they know they're in a boring movie, and they just can't stir themselves to make an effort. Even the lowliest extras in a 1950s' B picture would have been able to scream better and roll their eyes more than the actors in this film. They act like they've used Kong's tranquilizer gun for target practice on themselves.

The picture's big news: Kong did not die after being machinegunned and falling from the top of the World Trade Center. (I guessed that from the last picture, in which Kong looked remarkably intact after arriving at street level.) The injured Kong was carted to a university research center outside Atlanta, where he has lain in a coma for the last decade, awaiting an artificial heart.

Anyway, wouldn't you know, just when things look darkest for Kong, a big-game hunter discovers a female Kong in the jungles of Borneo, and transports her to research headquarters for a transfusion that will make it possible to implant Kong's artificial heart.

After the operation, romance blooms between the two creatures, who break their shackles and escape into the woods, where the Army attempts to shoot them down, while the female heart specialist and the big game hunter (who have taken to sharing sleeping bags) use computers to monitor the big fella's condition.

Every movie like this has at least one amazing line of dialogue. I especially liked it when the heroine cried to the Army troops: "Don't shoot the female! She's gone into labor!" This moment was especially amazing since the two Kongs had mated for the first time only three days earlier. With a turnaround time like that, it's remarkable that there isn't a little Kong in every one of the holiday movies.

Popular Blog Posts

Different rules apply

White privilege, lived.

Who do you read? Good Roger, or Bad Roger?

This message came to me from a reader named Peter Svensland. He and a fr...

Ferguson, Missouri: Third World America vs. Atlas Shrugged

An FFC looks at the horrible situation in Ferguson, MO and what it says about where we are and where we're going.

Retrieving the Grail: Robin Williams and "The Fisher King"

An examination and appreciation of one of Robin Williams' greatest films, "The Fisher King."

Reveal Comments
comments powered by Disqus