Friday, December 30, 2005


Entirely too conveniently coincidental. Matt Dillon didn't have to save the same woman that he molested, the young white cop would never have offered the black hoodlum hitchhiker a ride (no matter how young and idealistic the young white cop was) and sadly, the reality of the storekeeper shoooting the locksmith would have been that the gun was not loaded with blanks. In the real world, the little girl would have died, but everybody got a second chance in this movie, everybody had the opportunity for redemption. With such a self-serving storyline, it's impossible to call this a good movie, despite the quality of the individual performances and the relevance of the racial message.

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KK redux 

OK, maybe it's unfair to Jackson to complain about the girl's dress. After all, this is an action-adventure movie, and heroines throughout history have been scantily clad with complete disregard for the elements. It's obvious that Jackson's doing a tribute to the whole genre of action movies and so is including elements of those movie's style to make the necessary obsequence to them - hence the biplanes that move as if they're on strings and the dramatic slo-mo shots. It's all of a style.

If that's the supposition, then I am left with the feeling that Jackson's done nothing new with this picture and thus the film is worth nothing more than as derivative camp entertainment, slicked up with overblown CGI. Which is really too bad, because he had a chance to make something really great - and removing some of the glaringly obvious 'bad movieisms' would have been a good start. If he could have made it so that the reality really was self-consistent, without the glaringly obvious physical inconsistencies ... now that would have been something.

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Sunday, December 25, 2005

K-k-k-k-ing-g-g-g K-k-k-k-k-ong-g-g-g-g-g 

It's a visual extravaganza, lush cinematography and great characterizations ...

People are always telling me that you need to go into these things with a willingness to suspend belief - which is fine, I have no problems at all with the twenty-five foot ape. In fact, this Kong is great, thoroughly detailed and a more expressive personality than the actors in the movie. Even though he looks like a silverback gorilla and does things no silverback gorilla could do (or at least, nowhere near that fast) that's not my problem. I don't mind the overblown CGI or that everybody in that canyon during the stampede of brontosaurii would undoubtably have died. No, that's not my problem with this movie.

My problem isn't really that it's too freakin' long. Jackson does need to learn how to find the essential details of a story and to present those details in something less than three hours. Considerably less. Like, an hour less would have been good, especially since there was so much obviously extraneous material, like the whole battle with the insects and the overwrought slo-mo shots. However, I could even live with that, since the story never seemed to drag at any point.

It's not even that there's something really wrong with the timeline at the end of the movie. When the ape is paraded onstage, it's night. Presumably, it's an eight or nine o'clock premiere, (I'd even be willing to accept that it started at eleven, the 'late show',) but there's just not enough action between Kong's escape and the time he climbs the tower for the night to have elapsed. Yet, there is the sun rising, just in time for the ape and the woman to make their heartfelt connection atop the tower. No matter, such things are easily overlooked, just as easily as ignoring the fact that the sun is rising over New Jersey.

No, what really bothered me was that New York in the winter is freakin' cold and ice-skating with the gorilla and having him blow snow on you is freakin' cold and climbing around on steel runged ladders on top of the Empire State building is freakin' cold and none of it gets any warmer when you're wearing a sheer silk dress with no sleeves. I'm sorry, that woman would have been a useless, shivering mess. I don't mind a self-consitent fantasy reality, but c'mon people, it's just not plausible to have her doing anything in that outfit, under those conditions, but dying of hypothermia.

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