During 1942 two World War II pilots, an American Hank Marlow and a Japanese soldier crash land on an island. Enemies, they begin to fight until a large creature rises up and leaves them standing in shock. Fast forward almost 29 years to the early 70’s. Two scientists, Bill Randa (John Goodman) and Houston Brooks (Corey Hawkins) are trying to get government permission to do research on this mysterious, uncharted Pacific island. An island constantly surrounded by storms, where ships and planes. disappeared, somewhat reminiscent of the Bermuda Triangle. Initially denied, a heartfelt plea from Brooks garners the permission they need. Their last minute request….military support; the first inkling that perhaps there is trouble ahead. Included in the party is a Vietnam military unit, initially on their way home, a photographer and a US government agent to help guide the expedition.
A tense few moments in the helicopters, and the expedition makes it safely through the storm, and starts to drop explosive charges for a “seismology report”, or so they say. The charges draw the wrath of mighty Kong and unleash some pretty scary, practically pre-historic looking creatures. In his fury, Kong destroys helicopters, kills several soldiers and the remaining party crash lands in separate locations. During the trek back to the pick-up point, Marlow and a new tribe is discovered, more of the expedition party dies and Lieutenant Preston Packard (Samuel L. Jackson) goes crazy and sets his sights on killing the monster that killed his men.
Great movie moments
If you are a fan of Samuel L. Jackson, be prepared for him to be his own predictable cliché, using every famous line and speech he has ever used in any movie. Nobody plays it like Samuel L.
It’s supposed to be as semi-serious a movie, as one can be about a large ape, but there are many funny moments – especially between the soldiers Mills (Jason Mitchell) and Cole (Shea Whigham).
John C. Reilly plays the older version of Hank Marlow discovered on the island by the expedition crew. Reilly is certainly an odd character that the audience can really believe has gone a little crazy on a secluded island with natives. Definitely casting at its best.
Not-so great movie moments:
It’s hard to call these “not-so-great” moments because really they are not so bad. For example, the storyline… Of course Kong is going to fall for the girl as he has in every version since the initial movie in 1933. Fortunately, it’s not as “in your face” love as in earlier versions – more of protector. Brie Larson does a good job as Mason, “that” woman.
While I did list Samuel L. Jackson in the great movie moments he does, as always, play the role so over the top.
Overall, I think I can give this movie a 4 out of 5 stars, as long as you remember it is syfy entertainment.
Director:Jordan Vogt Roberts
Running time:118 minutes
Interested in the original version? Check out Amazon!
King Kong (1933)
I paid for the ticket out of my own funds and have not been compensated for this review.