I don’t know exactly how old I was when I saw the original King Kong, but I couldn’t have been any older than five. I recall with reasonable vividness sitting in front of our black and white TV in the Springburn neighbourhood of Glasgow, Scotland, absolutely enthralled by the sheer spectacle, the charm, of the 1933 production that heralded a new era of moviemaking. There is likely nobody in the western world who doesn’t know King Kong – even if they have never seen the original, Kong exists among the pantheon of famous movie monsters, along with Godzilla, Freddy Kruger, Jason Voorhees, Frankenstein, and Dracula, to name a few. Kong has a place in our hearts because he reminds us as ourselves. Possessed of a humanistic sense of justice and primal strength, Kong represents us – stripped of the daily bullshit and phoniness that we all succumb to, Kong is us laid bare, and mostly shat on by the kind of assholes we have to deal with now and then. Too high and mighty an opinion for you? Not a problem – Kong also works as a spectacle monster movie, even when the scripts are no good, the nature of the beast guarantees battles between colossal creatures to feed the eyes.
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