The release date for “Kong: Skull Island” was pushed back from November 4 to March 10, 2017 to coincide with the 84th anniversary of the release of “King Kong” back in 1933. Critics found the film to be worth the wait as this latest instalment in the monster franchise earned an impressive 77 at the Rotten Tomatoes review aggregator.
Many reviews made mention of the chemistry between Golden Globe champ Tom Hiddleston (“The Night Manager”) and Oscar winner Brie Larson (“Room”) who star in the popcorn picture. They lead a team of explorers into the heart of an uncharted island in the south Pacific, unaware that they are crossing into the domain of this mythic monster.
Director Jordan Vogt-Roberts, whose only other feature was the 2013 coming-of-age comedy “The Kings of Summer,” earned much praise for his helming of this blockbuster. The script is by Oscar nominee Dan Gilroy (“Nightcrawler”), Derek Connolly (“Jurassic World” and the upcoming “Star Wars” movie) and “Godzilla” writer Max Borenstein, who came on board when the decision was made to make this movie part of the MonsterVerse. Indeed, Legendary has already announced that King Kong and Godzilla will face off in a 2020 release, as part of an ecosystem of giant super-species, both classic and new.
Among those critics most impressed with the movie were:
Ann Hornaday (Washington Post): “‘Kong: Skull Island’ is a big, noisy B-movie infused with moments of wit and sprightly visual sophistication, anchored by what surely must be the most enormous version of King Kong since the giant ape made his screen debut in 1933.”
Michael Phillips (Chicago Tribune): “‘Kong: Skull Island’ zips along and treats the Kong mythology seriously without getting balled up in the storytelling. Any movie with the sense, the wit and the visual instincts to introduce Kong the way this one does is fine with me.”
Chris Nashawaty (EW): “We didn’t come to ‘Kong: Skull Island’ for the characters (well-developed or otherwise), we came for the damn dirty ape. And director Jordan Vogt-Roberts and Industrial Light and Magic’s Kong is a CGI showstopper.”
Richard Roeper (Chicago Sun-Times): “It’s wildly entertaining and it has a sense of humor about itself – and it doesn’t hurt when a great big monster movie features an A-list cast.”
Owen Glieberman (Variety): The surprise is that Skull Island isn’t just ten times as good as Jurassic World; it’s a rousing and smartly crafted primordial-beastie spectacular.