Today, 84 years ago (March 1933), The Eighth Wonder of the World made his cinematic debut in King Kong, which was directed by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack and starred Fay Wray, Bruce Cabot and Robert Armstrong. It was a box office success, is still praised today for its lifelike stop-motion animated Kong, and launched a franchise that includes: Son of Kong (December 1933), King Kong vs. Godzilla (1962), King Kong Escapes (1967), King Kong (1976), King Kong Lives (1986), King Kong (2005), and the soon-to-be-released Kong: Skull Island.
So, will the latter be considered a classic like the 1933 original is? Well, the first wave of reviews for Kong: Skull Island have come in.
Click on "Start Slideshow" to see what the critics have to say.
The year is 1973. Somewhere in our world, it is said that there exists a wondrous island unspoiled by man – a land shrouded in mystery, where myth runs wild. Uncharted and undiscovered. When the secretive organization known as Monarch identify this destination as the origin point for mysterious new superspecies, they mount an expedition to discover its secrets. What they find on Skull Island is an adventure beyond any human experience. An exotic paradise of wonders and terrors, where flora and fauna have fused together into an Eden of otherworldly jungle creatures.
As one group fights to escape and the other declares war on Kong, we discover that the mighty primate is at the center of a battle for dominion over the island, locked into a 'survival of the fittest' face-off with the terrifying apex predators responsible for wiping out his kin. Driven by vengeance, Kong will become nature's fury, and fight to take his rightful place upon the throne of most powerful beast on the island, revealing the story of how Kong became King.
Kong: Skull Island stars Tom Hiddleston (Thor: Ragnarok), Samuel L. Jackson (The Avengers), Oscar-winner Brie Larson (Room), John Goodman (10 Cloverfield Lane) and John C. Reilly (Guardians of the Galaxy). The international ensemble cast also includes Tian Jing, Corey Hawkins, Jason Mitchell, John Ortiz, Thomas Mann, Shea Whigham, Toby Kebbell and Eugene Cordero.
Jordan Vogt-Roberts (The Kings of Summer) directs the film from a screenplay by Max Borenstein, John Gatins, Dan Gilroy and Derek Connolly. The film is produced by Legendary's Thomas Tull and Jon Jashni with Mary Parent. The executive producers are Eric McLeod and Alex Garcia.
It'll be released worldwide in 2D, 3D in select cinemas, and IMAX on March 10, 2017.
Want the chance to win one of Logan's claws thanks to Regal & IMAX? Click the here or the image below to enter!
"Filmmaking doesn't get more corporate than 'Kong: Skull Island,' which scratches your monster-movie itch without ever once providing an injection of unpredictability or eccentricity that might confuse a single half-attentive moviegoer. It lacks neither fun nor polish, but it has the square tidiness of a compartmentalized fast-food meal." - Alonso Duraldeprevnext
"It's certainly not a perfect movie, and a lot of the characters feel like sketches more than full fledged people, but it roars along enjoyably from start to finish." - Kyle Andersonprevnext
"In many ways, 'Kong: Skull Island' is a 'Jurassic Park' movie — and if viewed that way, it's the best since the first. The characters may be a touch minimal, but that doesn't mean they're boring; the actors fill them in." - Owen Gleibermanprevnext
"Two films in to the MonsterVerse and it's been a mixed start — both Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island fumbling the human characters, but nailing the kaiju. There's potential, it's just yet to be fully realised." - Jonathan Pileprevnext
The Hollywood Reporter
"Leagues better than Peter Jackson's bloated, three-hour Kong of 2005, this one looks poised for strong returns and potential sequels co-starring hinted-at monsters from movie lore." - Todd McCarthyprevnext
"So even though Skull Island features some truly breathtaking moments that incorporate the elements that everyone loved in Godzilla—the tense, still and smoky seconds where an unseen monster lurks (cinematographer Larry Fong deserves a shout-out; as does a particular ingenious use of a malfunctioning camera flash)—it feels like a movie that was made in a focus group chemist lab and never solidies its own thing." - Brian Formoprevnext
"Kong is a fascinating character because despite his menacing appearance, he just wants to be left alone. If only his franchise were treated that way." - Eric Kohnprevnext
"Vogt-Roberts knows that a stylistic elevation and attempt at politicization are keys to the character's success, and he houses those in a fantastic, monster-strewn adventure. These days, getting out of the muck of the real world and into a fully realized, escapist romp, feels positively essential." - Drew Taylorprevnext
We Got This Covered
"It might be jokier than Edwards' grim Godzilla, but Kong: Skull Island is equally cinematic in its Saigon haze. Hyper-realized locales, agriculture and violent jungle boogies all pop, as one mighty mammal pounds his pecs with a boastful bravado. Thanks to Mr. Vogt-Roberts, Kong is King once again." - Matt Donatoprev