This is another set of reviews of movies I watched on airplanes, with bad sound and too many little bottles of wine.
Kong: Skull Island
This may be a perfect movie for bad sound and too many little bottles of wine because this doesn’t have a single original thing in it — but it knows it. Is there a reason this needs to exactly replicate the aesthetics of a 1980’s Vietnam War movie? Did Jefferson Airplane’s “White Rabbit” really get played on U.S. bases in Vietnam as much as it does in these movies? Why the hell did they bring a record player to Skull Island? I probably wasn’t supposed to laugh when that one guy handed over the pile of dog tags to Samuel L. Jackson but I totally did. “Sir, here are the tags of our fallen comrades, some of whom were swallowed whole by a giant gorilla. Please don’t ask.”
But really, this film is an object lesson in how very good actors can sell something ridiculous by sheer force of will.
This was really good. I mean, it wasn’t art, it was super trope-y, and had just about everything you expect from a one-man-army revenge thriller story. (We have twenty years of CSI to thank for those endless scenes of agents sitting in front of computer screens while whatever suspenseful information scrolls up ever so conveniently. Macguffin screens, lets call them.) But what sold me on this were the characters. Like five characters, all played by really solid actors, who all had interesting arcs that intersected in plausible ways and I liked them and liked that things ended well for most of them. Good work, movie! And this is all before I even get to the part where it’s superheroes and accounting, which is kind of my thing. I’m telling you, it’s a great untapped genre. I told my CPA mom to watch this one.