King Kong is perhaps one of the most favorite movie monsters ever. He was loved and also feared, and his entire story is a very cool rendition of beauty and the beast. King Kong has appeared in various films, but there are only four main films in which he really stood out. Here are some of the things to love about it and what the differences are between those films.
King Kong (1933)
This is the original film, and even with its limits on special effects, this still became quite an iconic movie. King Kong was created using stop animation, which is basically a way of manipulating objects to appear as if they are moving on their own, when they’re actually not. Even back then his towering figure was enough to scare anybody. This film also became unique because this movie monster was portrayed in an anthropomorphic way, meaning he had human features about him, and he walked up-right.
Not too many people noticed how his height changed throughout the film, but that was only because the one responsible wanted to test these different heights throughout the film. It came out great, and I love seeing and King Kong’s connection to Anne.
King Kong (1976)
There were other films that featured King Kong, but this film was the first official remake of the 1933 classic. The story in this case was changed considerably. There were many elements left out that we saw and became familiar with in the original. And despite its box office failure, in a way it was still a bit successful and launched the career of Jessica Lange.
Like in the original, King Kong was also anthropomorphic with a bit more human features about him. He was more intelligent and seemed to be more in love with Anne (Dwan in this remake.) The filmmakers also played around with his height in this film too. It was quite different in the begin from how it was towards the end when he was running rampant in New York. The famous New York scene featured the World Trade Center instead of the Empire State Building.
I didn’t love this movie quite as much, but it was still okay. I like seeing King Kong, but a lot of what happened on Skull Island in the original made some of this movie lacking.
King Kong Lives (1986)
This movie turned out to be a failure, but as a child watching it for the first time, I enjoyed it. Like in its predecessors, King Kong is still anthropomorphic, with even more human features and intelligence (even though he walked on his knuckles a little bit.) Only this time, he’s more larger and bulkier. Apparently, he survived his fall from the World Trade Center, but lies in a coma, which he’s been in for the last ten years. He ultimately had a life saving surgery consisting of a mechanical heart transplant and a blood transfusion.
This story wasn’t the classic beauty and the beast story. In this case, King Kong ended up falling in love with a female of the same species dubbed Lady Kong. This is how Kong got his blood transfusion. Both ended up having a son, which Kong had the chance to see before dieing from injuries he sustained by being shot by the military.
King Kong (2005)
Peter Jackson created another masterpiece concerning King Kong. This second remake starred Adrian Brody and Naomi Watts. This film reverted back to the heart of the ultimate King Kong story, taking its cue from the 1933 original. Everything you saw in the original was done tenfold in this film and to me was quite the success.
There was a huge change to King Kong in this film. Instead of him being human-like and anthropomorphic, he was represented as a silverback gorilla, making him more agile. Despite that he isn’t human-like, he still has a great degree of intelligence about him. Another thing is, a scientific name was given to his fictitious species by the name of “Megaprimatus Kong”, evolving from Gigantopithecus, which is in fact a real species from long ago.
In this film it’s clear that there were others like him, but he was the last. The others like him were more than likely his family who have died. There are other animals on the Skull Island like dinosaurs, and other large reptiles like it. In this film, Kong is also old with many battle scars from his time on Skull Island. Unlike the other films, the members of Skull Island were more vicious, but to me that was very appealing and added a certain amount of depth to the story.