King Kong 2005

While it’s not my favorite Jack Black performance—like he’s making fun of the character he’s playing as he’s playing him—and the middle gets flabby falling in love with its own monsters, this is one of the best remakes ever done. This version is a bona fide love story, and you don’t get much more star-crossed than the pair pictured above. As long as he’s with Ann and Kong, Peter Jackson’s version has me captivated, and once Kong’s in a lovingly recreated New York this version delivers the best last act of the three. Kong’s death brings the big tears for me. One of the many things I like about the film is that Kong is made more sympathetic by making him more simian. Someone spent a long time watching gorillas. Ann and Kong’s relationship is deliciously complex and utterly persuasive, to me at least. (But then I do have a thing for beauty and the beast stories). I also like the way Jackson has used his predecessors, alluding to their best moments and making them his own. I’m a Kong slut. I love all three, though in future viewings of this one, I’ll pick and choose my way through the monster-muddled middle.

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