Monday, December 19, 2005

Winner Found, JigZone Victory, and King Kong Review

Holy Chirping Crickets, Batman! The silence from the lack of comments about yesterday's posts is deafening! Thank you, Karoda, for letting me know I didn't slip into some alternate dimension or something where no one can see me. Whew! Ok, I wrote the above paragraph last night and when I woke up this morning there were comments from Caity and Amy too so I feel better. [grin] And big Congrats to Caity to being the mystery Aussie visitor #33333! I'll be sending you something soon, Caity. Speaking of yesterday, LookeeLookee what I did: Picture me doing an obnoxious victory dance around the room! HA! King Kong Review: Spoilers ahead if you don't know the story from seeing either this one or the original!! I went to see a matinee of King Kong yesterday afternoon. Well, actually it started just before noon, which turned out to be a great time to see it. I wasn't alone in the theater, but it wasn't nearly as crowded as it was when I've been to see other movies lately. So, what did I think of it? It turns out that's a tough one to answer. I liked it - sort of. If you'd asked me if I liked it the second the film was finished, my answer would have been a resounding "yes, great movie!". But then the lights came up and I had time to think. On the plus side, it definitely held my interest. It was a three-hour movie but didn't feel that long to me and lots of parts had me really caught up in the actions and emotions. There were some truly wonderful scenes. Special effects were stunning, as I figured they would be. The actors all did a terrific job and were perfectly cast for their roles. Naomi Watts has very pretty hair. (I assume that was important to notice as they made a big production of it billowing around in the breeze in nearly every scene she was in.) If I could have just taken this movie as a straightforward action-adventure movie - a mindlessly entertaining way to spend a Sunday afternoon - I'd have really liked it, despite the inevitably sad ending. But it turned out to be impossible for me to do that. Just in case I didn't "get" that there was supposed to be an underlying message to the film, the writers and director hammered it home with brick-upside-the-head subtlety. They made a big deal about one character reading the story "The Heart of Darkness" (a story I heartily detested, BTW...pun intended. har!) on the boat journey to the island. Then at one point, when the situation on the island was just about to get really hairy (har!), this character looked up from the book and said to another character, "This isn't just an adventure story, is it, Mr. Haynes?". And Mr. Haynes replied, "No, Jimmy, it isn't". Well. All righty then, brick duly noted. They chose to end the movie with the classic line from the original, when the character Carl Denham says, "It wasn't the airplanes; it was Beauty killed the Beast". That's a great movie line - one of those ones that gives you shivers as you sit in a dark theater, caught up in the story. But then the lights come on. And you start to think. Or at least I did. And if you're me, you think waaaaait just a minute there, Bud! "Beauty killed the Beast"?? I don't think so. What led to Kong's tragic end was the fact that your fat, greedy ass couldn't leave him where you found him to live the life he was meant to live. Instead you chose to capture him, chain him up, take him to a strange land where he didn't fit into the existing pattern or know the rules, and exploit him for your own gain. Then when he rebelled, as any sane and rational being would do, he was put down like a rabid dog for being a "danger to society". And ok, yes, once he was on the loose in New York City, he was a danger to society. He as a 25-foot tall gorilla, ferpetessake. I wouldn't have wanted to be a blonde-haired woman who wasn't Ann Darrow in NYC that night. But the point was that he shouldn't have been in this society to start with. He should have been left where he was found to live the life he was born to live. So to my mind a less poetic, but way more accurate closing line would have been, "It wasn't the airplanes; it was Greed, Stupidity, Arrogance, and Inhumanity killed the Beast." This isn't just an adventure story. I get that. And the message we are to take away? The message I took away was that Man is his own worst enemy and the most human character in the story was the Beast. Merry Christmas. In the end, I'm glad I saw it. But will I want to watch it again? I'm not sure. I'll have to give that some thought.