When it comes to creature features and wonders of the world of fiction, there have been none greater than the likes of King Kong since his debut in 1933. He definitely began the world’s obsession with larger than life creatures and characters. In 2005, Peter Jackson (The Lord Of The Rings) would direct this remake that starred Jack Black (Orange County) as director Carl Denham. Carl needs to create a movie that is unlike anything the world has seen, but the studio doesn’t believe in him. Naomi Watts (The Ring) stars as struggling actress Ann Darrow who is just looking for a big break. The two will eventually run into each other and she is hired to star in his film. The only problem is that the film is to be filmed on an island that no one has been to and they bite off more than they can chew when the eight wonder of the world shows up. The film also stars Adrien Brody (The Jacket) as Jack Driscoll, Thomas Kretschmann (Wanted) as Captain Englehorn, Colin Hanks (Orange County) as Preston, Andy Serkis (Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes) as Kong, Evan Parke (Django Unchained) as Hayes, Jamie Bell (The Fantastic Four) as Jimmy, Kyle Chandler (The Wolf Of Wall Street) as Bruce Baxter, and John Sumner (District 9) as Herb.
I still have yet to see the original 1933 classic that actually has King Kong listed as an actor in the film. The only other version I have seen is the 1976 version that starred Jeff Bridges and Jessica Lange. The one thing you can guarantee when it comes to watching this film is that the special effects are going to be amazing compared to any other version before it. The CGI alone makes this a version worth watching because they can do so much more with the film then they were able to do in the past. One of my favorite things about this film is when they are actually on Skull Island because that is where the fun and adventure is in this film. From the crazy looking natives to all the creatures that inhabit Skull Island like giant spiders, dinosaurs, and so much more creepy crawlers. The fight scene between Kong and the three T-Rex’s is absolutely amazing and one of my favorites. This is actually one of many films where Jack Black flexes his acting abilities and shows us he doesn’t have to be an imbecile all the time on screen to entertain people. Adrien Brody does a terrific job in the film as well as Naomi Watts, the beauty that kills the beast. They have the iconic climbing of the skyscraper scene in this film and it’s superb as well as other iconic shots. This was definitely a cool movie that I enjoyed and I can not wait for Kong: Skull Island to come out in 2017. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade. Check it out on Showtime or Showtime Anywhere right now.
I was excited for today’s film when I saw that it was available at my local Redbox location. I was a huge fan of the Goosebumps book series that came out in the 90’s from R.L. Stine and I was excited for the film version which stars Jack Black (High Fidelity) as R.L. Stine. Zach (Dylan Minnette) and his mother Gale (Amy Ryan) are trying to start fresh in a new town when they move to Madison, DE. While at the new home, Zach meets his neighbor Hanna (Odeya Rush) and her weird over protective father (Black). One night, Zach swore that he heard a scream coming from Hanna’s house so with the help of his skittish new friend Champ (Ryan Lee), they’ll go over to investigate, but trouble lurks ahead for them. The boys by accidentally let out the monsters from R.L. Stine’s Books and one them named Slappy the Ventriloquist doll (voiced by Jack Black) will stop at nothing to rid the world of Stine to ensure they can never be trapped again. The film also stars Jillian Bell (22 Jump Street) as Lorraine, Halston Sage (Neighbors) as Taylor, Ken Marino (Role Models) as Coach Carr, Timothy Simons (The Interview) as Officer Stevens, and even a cameo by R.L. Stine himself.
I was wondering going in to watching this film whether I would let a child see it because these were children’s horror stories. After watching it, I would say that I think it would be OK, but be watchful of some scenes depending on the age of your child because there is a werewolf, Zombies, a creepy clown, and much more. The movie overall was fun and cool to see come to life. I was weary of how Jack Black was going to do and he did fine in the film. He wasn’t an over top goofball like he can be which was pleasant to see. I loved the combination of Dylan Minnette who plays the strong type and Ryan Lee who is a complete chicken. Yes I know it’s very stereotypical cannon, but there is a reason why it’s around because it works. Just ask Scooby Doo! The monsters were very cool to see and there was plenty of action, comedy, and suspense to keep you going through the whole film. I had a lot of laughs as I watched in suspense and the set design was what was even better. I loved the scenes in the old fairgrounds that they have in the film. It’s visually stunning in my opinion especially when you throw some monsters in it. There’s also a little bit of a love story, but don’t worry cause it’s not overpowering. Just a nice little touch thrown in by the writers. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade.
One of my all time favorite actors from the 1980’s is definitely John Cusack who starred in many classics like One Crazy Summer, The Sure Thing, Tapeheads, Say Anything, and so many more. In 2000, he starred in the Stephen Frears (Philomena) film High Fidelity. In the film, he plays record store owner, compulsive list maker Rob Gordon, a man that could use a little growing up emotionally. One day, his girlfriend Laura (Iben Hjejle) leaves him and Rob can’t figure out for the life of him why it happens to him. So, he develops a top five list of break ups in his life and he gets to the bottom of them while trying to recuperate his own life along with his crazy employees. The film also stars Jack Black (Orange County) as Barry Judd, Tim Robbins (The Shawshank Redemption) as Roy, Todd Louiso (Thank You For Smoking) as Dick, Lisa Bonet (The Cosby Show) as Marie, Catherine Zeta-Jones (The Mask Of Zorro) as Charlie, Joan Cusack (Say Anything) as Liz, Lili Taylor (The Conjuring) as Sarah, Joelle Carter (American Pie 2) as Penny, Natasha Gregson Wagner (Urban Legend) as Caroline Fortus, and Sara Gilbert (Roseanne) as Anna.
While this can be filed as a new age romantic comedy film for John Cusack, who was used to starring in those back in the 80’s, also manages to do one thing as well. That is it combines a love for music and vinyl which is right up my alley. This was one of those films that I had only seen bits and pieces of, but I am glad I saw this. If you know John Cusack films, then this is a pretty particular film for him because he is constantly breaking the fourth wall and talking to you which he has done plenty of times in the past. It’s that touch of the 80’s that they can’t seem to get rid of, but i like it because I like being talked to. The film sort of has it all from drama, romance, a little comedy courtesy of Jack Black, kick ass music, and the amazing Catherine Zeta-Jones. The film did at times attack pop culture as to say that it wasn’t music with heart or a soul which can be true some of the time. One thing that I found pretty cool is that there is a list online of all the top five lists from the film which you can check out here. You should also be checking out the soundtrack which was as I mentioned before absolutely amazing. Meanwhile, I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade.