Where Myths and Science Meet

Kong: Skull Island

Director: Jordan Vogt-Roberts

Cast: Tom Hiddleston, Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, John C. Reilly, John Goodman, John Ortiz, Shea Whigham, Corey Hawkins, Tian Jing, Toby Kebbell, Jason Mitchell, Richard Jenkins, Thomas Mann

The allusions to Apocalypse Now and Joseph Conrad’s novel The Heart of Darkness are rife in newcomer director Jordan Vogt-Roberts action packed seventies set adventure film Kong: Skull Island.

Featuring an international cast including British actor Tom Hiddleston, Oscar winner Brie Larson (Room), John Goodman, Samuel L. Jackson, John C. Reilly and Tian Jing (The Great Wall), Kong: Skull Island wastes no time on characterization or dramatic build up but rushes straight into an adrenaline filled action film set at the end of the Vietnam war in 1973.

With a retro seventies soundtrack to match, Bill Randa played by John Goodman and Houston Brooks played by 24: Legacy’s Corey Hawkins get the go ahead from Senator Willis briefly played by Richard Jenkins (Eat, Pray, Love) to assemble a  military team and journey to a mysterious storm ridden island in the South Pacific on an exploratory mission.

The team consists of soldiers hanging for some more action after the American withdrawal from Vietnam including Preston Packard played by Samuel L. Jackson and Cole played by Shea Whigham (American Hustle) along with anti-war photographer Mason Weaver played by Larson and golden boy James Conrad, played by Hiddleston (Thor: The Dark World).

As they approach Skull Island and drop seismic charges on the lush and malignant landscape, the team soon discover that a massive beast is guarding the island from vicious lizards. That beast is King Kong, that giant gorilla last seen on top of the Empire State building with a blond in his palm. Reference Peter Jackson’s 2005 epic King Kong.

Director Jordan Vogt-Roberts cleverly wastes no time in cutting straight to the action as various teams on the island are separated only to be individually preyed upon by a variety of nefarious creatures including giant spiders. While Packard and his band of mercenary soldiers are keen on annihilating Kong, Mason and James stumble upon Hank Marlow, a crazed but good natured World War II pilot who accidentally landed on Skull Island back in 1944 and never left, even befriending the silent locals who worship Kong as their sole protector.

Marlow is superbly played by character actor John C. Reilly, a role clearly referencing Dennis Hopper’s frenetic photojournalist in Apocalypse Now without the looming intensity of a Mister Kurtz watching over his horrific empire. Reilly brings empathy to the role of Marlow, another clear reference to The Heart of Darkness and advises the more sympathetic team that Kong is not that bad. A fact which is vividly illustrated by Mason Weaver’s wonderful encounter with the gigantic beast.

Brie Larson gives a resilient performance as the only strong female lead in a basically all male film and has the best screen time with Kong, realizing that much like those brave soldiers hunting Kong, they are all as confused about this rapid reversal in the environmental food chain.

Kong: Skull Island is unadulterated adventure, punctuated with cool photographic stills of exotic ethnography to capture a unique and terrifying experience where myth and science meet.

With the help of a groovy seventies soundtrack and a stand out performance by John C. Reilly, Kong Skull Island gets a film rating of 7.5 out of 10. Highly recommended viewing.

 

Comments are closed.

Film Directors & Festivals
Reviews and Awards
Review Calender
March 2017
M T W T F S S
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  
  • Cyber Bullying French Drama ‘Stalk’ Bought by HBO Latin America, Rai (EXCLUSIVE)
    “Stalk,” Simon Bouisson’s timely French show tackling cyber spying and bullying, has lured a flurry of top TV channels across the world. Produced by Priscilla Bertin and Judith Nora at Silex Films, the half-hour psychological thriller series was a big hit on France Televisions’s platform Slash and later aired on the broadcaster’s linear channel France […]
    elskes
  • Sting to Perform His Song From ‘Arcane’ Live at the 2021 Game Awards
    Sting is set to the take the stage at next month’s 2021 Game Awards as one of the event’s feature musical performances. The 17-time Grammy winner is slated to perform “What Could Have Been,” from Netflix animated series “Arcane,” an adaptation based on Riot Games’ “League of Legends.” Netflix recently renewed “Arcane” for a second […]
    Todd Spangler
  • Yahya Abdul-Mateen II Launches Production Company House Eleven10, Partners With Netflix
    Emmy-winning actor Yahya Abdul-Mateen II has officially added producer to his resume, with the launch of his production company House Eleven10. Abdul-Mateen and House Eleven10 have also inked a creative partnership with Netflix, with the actor starring in and producing films for the streamer under the new production banner. Named as an homage to his […]
    Angelique Jackson
  • BTS Tops Apple Music’s 2021 Most-Streamed Songs Chart
    Apple Music has unveiled its biggest songs of the year with its annual Top 100 charts, which not only include the most-streamed songs — topped by BTS’ smash “Dynamite” but it has also shared its “Top 100 2021: Fitness” chart—spotlighting the most-played workout music across Apple Music and Fitness+— its top 100 most-Shazamed songs and its […]
    Jem Aswad
  • ‘Game of Thrones’ Prequel Series ‘Tales of Dunk and Egg’ at HBO Sets Steve Conrad to Write
    The “Game of Thrones” prequel series “Tales of Dunk and Egg” at HBO has found its writer, Variety has learned from sources. Steve Conrad has been tapped to serve as writer and executive producer on the potential series under his Elephant Pictures banner. As Variety exclusively reported in January 2021, the one-hour show would be based […]
    Joseph Otterson
  • Read More
    Different providers offer different cell phones, so take a look at the options from each provider to choose the right one for you. You may also want to look into any promotions that the providers have to offer, such as free cell phones in exchange for signing a contract. Tags: 2gmhass90