Kong: Skull Island ★★★½

When I first heard there was going to be another King Kong movie, I groaned. I often bemoan the lack of original ideas in Hollywood nowadays. Then, I saw the previews, saw they were doing their own thing and it would be part of a bigger picture, and I was suddenly more interested. While it has its flaws, it is still fun.

I won't say too much about the plot. After all, I kept myself in the dark about it and it wasn't until relatively recently that I even discovered it was set in the early 70's. A random group of people get together to investigate the newly discovered Skull Island, only to find out that King Kong (and other things) live there. There's also John C. Reilly with an epic beard, and a plot that was actually inspired by Apocalypse Now, believe it or not. The characters aren't always the most interesting or layered, but that's the modern Hollywood blockbuster for you; the same goes for the dialogue. That also goes for the mostly obvious early 70's song choices. They (the characters and the songs) were still fine; one character in particular, she really did not do much of anything and I presume there's alternate edits out or an extended edit where she does more.

The talented cast certainly does help. So do the very scenic locations, and all the destruction that happens during the action scenes. Kong not being as realistic as in the 2005 Peter Jackson movie is OK, as he does more destruction here, at least. The climatic battle was pretty great, at least to me. In addition, there are plenty of awesome moments (some of them involving Reilly) that will make for great gifs and images in the future. I enjoyed this movie, although I doubt that Hollywood will ever make a Kong that is a classic like the 1933 original.

I did find out some things about the movie before I went and saw it. There is an obvious homage to an infamous horror picture, and it's not something you'd ever expect in a big budget Hollywood film. I also knew about the scene after the end credits are completed, and what it contained. Even if I didn't... those end credits spoil it anyhow, which greatly amused me. The future will hopefully be promising, and I'll leave it at that. Choosing more out of left field indy directors who you wouldn't expect to helm something like this... that would be a swell idea.

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