Therese and Kathleen are both nerds extraordinaire when it comes to Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings. In fact, they crafted an article (along with co-nerd, Elena Greene) about writerly lessons that can be derived from the film, and the article was published last November in the romance association’s craft magazine, the RWR. So when we heard Peter Jackson and company were tackling King Kong together, we were excited, but—surprise!—we came away with very different feelings about this remade classic.
Therese: I’m a huge Peter Jackson fan after his masterful work on Lord of the Rings, so I went to the theatre just to see him shine again with his latest furry baby, King Kong. On the whole, Kong entertained me; it was trademark PJ, with great world building and authentic characterization. What did you think?
Kathleen: I was really looking forward to Jackson’s followup effort after his kick-butt rendering of LOTR. I was so disappointed. I thought it suffered from massive bloat that dragged down the narrative. He could have lost at least an hour. I also got the impression that he was so hung up on this ‘lost world’ island he created that he lost sight of the storyline.
TW: I think the story had a character-driven engine, playing homage to each character’s journey and arc; this choice probably made for a slower ride than if PJ had chosen a plot-driven engine. (I can’t remember who it was now, but one of the actors or maybe PJ himself called this “a relationship movie,” and I agree.) The New York City sequence also essentially played the role of a looong prologue, IMO. Again, this was necessary to establish characterization, but it probably slowed down the story for some. Where do you think he should’ve snipped, Kath? [Read more…]