King Kong

 

King Kong

(1933)

King KongDistributor : C & C Television Corporation/
Janus Films, Inc./RKO Radio Pictures  
Director : Merian C. Cooper, 
Ernest B. Schoedsack
Writing credits : Merian C. Cooper, 
James Ashmore Creelman, Ruth Rose, Edgar Wallace
Producer : Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack,
David O. Selznick (executive)

Cast: 

Fay Wray ......... Ann Darrow
Robert Armstrong ......... Carl Denham
Bruce Cabot ......... Jack Driscoll
Frank Reicher ......... Captain Englehorn
Sam Hardy ......... Weston
Noble Johnson ......... Native Chief
Steve Clemente ......... Witch King
James Flavin ......... Second Mate
etc...

King KongWhat can one say about King Kong ? It is perhaps the greatest of all fantasy films, it is certainly the greatest monster movie ever made.

It required over three years at a cost of $420,000, most of which was used to build a 50 foot high model of Kong. The face of their ape star measured 7 feet from hairline to chin, while actor Carmen Nigro, dressed in a monkey suit, was used for the long shots.

Willis O' Brien's animation was performed with 18" high models constructed by the Delgado brothers. The quality of O’Brien’s effects is stunning. The level of detail - little touches such as Kong’s mannerisms, shaking his head and rubbing his eyes as he is hit by the gas bombs, or the twitching of the not-quite dead stegosaurus’s tail - is incredible. The incredibly violent battle between Kong and a triceratops that goes on for several minutes is perhaps the finest piece of stop-motion animation ever created for the screen.

Many scenes were cut from the film following its original 1933 premiere. The most notable scenes to go were the ones where Kong peels Fay Wray’s clothes from her and the scene where he attacks the sailors crossing the ravine and shakes them off to their deaths below. There are several other brief shots where Kong kills natives that were also cut. These were later restored in the 1980s, although the cut print is still the one that circulates on tv.

In 1976 producer Dino de Laurentiis made the infamous remake King Kong, which is reviled by all fans of the original. De Laurentiis then later made an even worse sequel King Kong Lives (1986).

Fay WrayInspired by an old map that charts a strange island enveloped in mist, Carl Denham, and his film crew emba rk on a secretive trip to make a film abount a giant mythical ape named Kong. On Skull Island they discover a tribe who worship and perform strange rituals to the giant gorilla that dwells beyond a huge wall built to keep him out. Denham's leading lady, Anne Darrow, (Wray), is abducted by the tribe and forced to be a sacrifice to their god, however, Kong falls in love with the girl and kills other creatures and the crew who try to rescue her, to keep her safe. Eventually Anne is rescued by first mate John Driscoll, and Kong is captured by Denham to be shipped back to New York. At the grand exhibtion, Kong manages to escape to terrorise New York city and re-capture Anne, whom he takes with him to the top of the Empire State building. Under attack from airplanes, Kong falls to his death.

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Fay Wray

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