A beastly tale

The latest edition of the King Kong franchise has done two things very differently

A scene from Kong: Skull Island. AP Photo
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Hollywood’s latest monster movie is distinctive in two ways. First, it spares New York City, which few monster movies do – American filmmakers love nothing more than to destroy their most famous skyline with CGI.

But secondly, it might actually be good. Kong: Skull Island is the second King Kong movie this century and the latest remix of the iconic – and to some film lovers still the best – 1933 King Kong movie. The others have been disappointing. The simple story of a big beast in the big city has proved hard to make compelling on the big screen. But this year’s Kong has surpassed critical expectations and has sold plenty of tickets at the box office.

That should give hope to fans of that other tale of the big beast going to the city, Godzilla. Twice in two decades the film has been remade and both were disliked by fans. In three years time, Kong and Godzilla are due to share screen time in one of those multi-franchise movies that are in vogue at the moment. If Batman v Superman is any guide, the vision will be better than the reality.