A megalomaniac C.E.O. sends his son into the dangerous African Congo on a quest for a source of diamonds large enough and pure enough to function as powerful laser communications transmitters (or is it laser weapons?). When contact is lost with his son and the team, his sometime daughter- in-law is sent after them. She is a former CIA operative and, accompanied by gee-whiz gadgetry and a few eccentric characters (including a mercenary, a researcher with a talking gorilla, and a a nutty Indiana-Jones-type looking for King Solomon's Mines), sets out to rescue her former fiancé. What they all discover is that often what we most want turns out to be the source of our downfall. Written by
Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>
Producer Frank Yablans had been involved in this project since its inception. Michael Crichton had pitched his idea for a modern-day King Solomon's Mines to him, before he had even written the novel. Yablans liked the idea so much that, without Crichton's authorization, he sold the film rights to Twentieth Century Fox in 1979, a year before the book was published. The technology to create the apes was not available at the time, however, and the project never materialized. During the production of Jurassic Park (1993), Crichton was impressed with the dinosaurs that Stan Winston's studio had created. Producer Kathleen Kennedy (who produced both films) suggested using Winston again for the apes, and suggested the project itself to her husband, Frank Marshall, and Crichton agreed. This resulted in Yablans, Marshall and Kennedy collaborating on the film. See more »
Zinj was supposed to have been founded by King Solomon, a great king of the Israelites, yet the only inscription on the stone walls once the party reaches it are Egyptian hieroglyphics. See more »
"Legends of the Hidden Temple" with intelligent gorillas and science
OK, this movie is best watched on a rainy day or when you're pretty bored. The fake looking gorillas were obviously not very well-made, whereas the 1993 film Jurassic Park had familiarized audiences with CG dinosaurs. In fact, CGI was originally planned for the grays, but the technology had not yet been developed to the point where realistic hair could be created. While smooth skinned dinosaurs were possible, hairy apes would have looked inappropriately cartooned. Therefore, animatronics, masks and puppetry had to be utilized. So that was kind of a damper on the special effects as well as Tim Curry's bad acting. The movie could have been a lot better, but it was viewable. If you got over the gorilla puppets and Tim Curry's accent, you have a pretty decent movie. I thought the story was good. It's not Jurassic Park, but it's Michael Crichton. Congo wasn't very realistic, but neither was Jurassic Park. It was like that show "Legends of the Hidden Temple" with intelligent gorillas and science. There was action and a plot. So I could sit and watch it. I'll give it (barely) 6 stars.
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