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Elkrider

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King Kong (2005)
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
WOFTAM - Waste Of F****** Time And Money (may contain slight spoilers), 22 January 2006
3/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Let me begin by dropping a little bomb. I didn't expect all that much from watching this movie since I'm in the firm opinion that Peter Jackson is, along with (second bomb) Quentin Tarantino, one of the most overrated directors. Did he ever make a movie without (over)using tons of FX and/or CGI? A movie which just tells a story? If you take out CGI from "King Kong" or the LotR trilogy, not much remains behind. In case of the latter, just a long-winded boredom assault with mostly bad acting and horrible dialogues and only marvellous landscapes to make up for it. Well, back to the matter at hand.

In short, I've rarely seen a movie with so many blatant and obvious errors. In addition to that I've rarely seen so many people trying to brush these errors aside by just saying "hey, it's a fantasy, you don't get it". Fantasy is one thing, but ignoring the basic laws of physics, for example, is something else. If I want that, I'll watch a Sci-Fi movie. Take a brief look at James Bond. As far as I know, up to now Bond hasn't done any absolutely impossible stunts. Highly improbable for sure, but still possible, however remotely. This is staying within basic physics.

The dinosaur problem

I'm not entirely sure which species the quadruped herbivores are supposed to be, probably Brontosaurus, Brachiosaurus or Diplodocus. Doesn't matter much, though, because none of them could possibly run like depicted. You know, there IS this tiny problem with weight. Regardless of how cool parts of the audience may find huge dinosaurs "drifting" around a corner on rock grounds like a bunch of rallye cars, it wouldn't have happened. An animal at the very least weighing 10 tons (depending on the species up to 30+) can't go around corners like that. What's the point in using highly sophisticated CGI if it's done in a fashion that a blind man could see it's fake? I thought it was supposed to look real. Oh, one more thing. So there's a big dinosaur, lots of flesh, thick hide...and it just dies from a few shots out of a submachine-gun? Please. This isn't fantasy, it's just stupid.

Ann Darrow is Supergirl

As already shown with the dinosaurs, nobody has bothered with possible biomechanical limits. Ann is tied between two posts and can't free herself, as it was most likely the point of tying her up in the first place. Kong reaches for her body and just pulls until the ropes rip. Right. This happens without so much as the tiniest bit of damage to her. No breaking of bones, no ripping out of arms, no dislocating of shoulder joints. Next point, Kong is standing on some kind of rock ledge with Ann in his hand, waving her around from above shoulder height down to his knee and back. I have slight doubts that a human body could take such a treatment without sustaining a little damage from g-forces at the turning points. Passing out would be the least thing to happen. I'd say that after the fight with the three T.rex (or whatever they were intended to be) Kong would have nothing but a smudge left in his hand where Ann used to be. In addition to that Ann doesn't freeze in a thin, sleeveless dress in New York City in December. Arms and head are out of Kong's hand for hours.

Strange movements

This might be a weak point in my argumentation, I'm not a gorilla expert, but some of the movements Kong made looked rather more like a snake than a big monkey. Definitely strange was the running scene in the jungle with Ann holding on to his shoulder. Since a gorilla on all fours is more or less moving in a series of jumps, there should be some bouncing. Then there was this plane Kong grabbed by the strut between the top and bottom wing to whirl it around. Excuse me, no. It's not a plane folded out of paper, for one thing. Not to forget that this strut would very likely break right away.

Superstrong lianas

So, there's a T.rex-like dinosaur weighing at least six tons. It loses footing and falls down a chasm...and after something like 20 or 30 meters it's caught by liana. Uh-huh. This would amount to about 1.5 million joule of kinetic energy. For comparison: an armour-piercing PzGr.40 round fired from a WWII Tiger tank has 3.15 million joule, at a weight of 7.3 kg and a muzzle velocity of 930 m/sec. I am well aware that nature is capable of some truly astounding things but liana strong enough to deal with such forces? I don't think so.

See, I don't mind fantasy. Why else would I watch a movie about a big monkey and dinosaurs which survived the worldwide extinction of their species by 65 million years? But once these fantasy creatures are on the surface of good old Mother Earth, the laws of physics apply even for them. No amount of eye candy can make up for ignoring such a basic thing. In short, "King Kong" was a major disappointment. Vast potential just wasted away by a director who just isn't up to it. They let him spend more than 200 million USD and all he could produce was this bad movie.

Rating: 6/10. Three points for Naomi Watts who (in my opinion) did a good job and is very pleasant to look at. Three points for the fantastic looking CGI. Three points off for wasting this great CGI by making it absolutely unbelievable, so it's down to 3/10.

Keep your pants on, fanboys. There is still such a thing as freedom of opinion. You are free to think that eye candy is all it takes, be happy with the strange idea that "King Kong" was a great movie.

JK'06 aka Elkrider

"Top Gear" (2002)
74 out of 89 people found the following review useful:
This is the real thing! 10/10, 4 July 2005

In short, Top Gear is the ultimate TV car program. If you like cars, it's the thing to watch - and if you don't, watch it anyway because you don't need to be a petrolhead or car buff to enjoy it. Pure, undiluted fun. Three insane Brits who are not shy of giving devastating test summaries for cars that didn't cut it. Not to mention the other stuff they think up, be that the 1500 quid used Porsche test or Caravan Conkers...the list is almost endless. While other TV car shows feature lots of boring junk, the Top Gear crew isn't afraid of anything. If needs be they put on helmets and crash test cars into a wall at 30 mph.

Even my mother likes to watch it, and her interest in cars is limited to "I like how that one looks" at the very best.

Eat your heart out, Richard Brunstrom! ;^> JK'05 aka Elkrider

10 out of 19 people found the following review useful:
Nobody could possibly expect it to be that bad, 24 May 2005
2/10

All right, just returned from the cinema. Frankly, I didn't expect much of it. I went to watch it for the main reason that I've seen all SW movies around the time they came out so I wanted to watch the last one as well. But - what I didn't expect was that mind-numbing assault of unbelievably bad crap. The acting was in a galaxy far, far below any known standard, the dialogue made me grind my teeth (it was a true rival for the abysmal Blade III) and George Lucas' idea of tying up loose ends to connect EP III with IV is something very much like what a six-year old boy would think up. Every time Hayden Christensen attempted to put on an evil or angry facial expression I was forced to summon all strength not to explode with laughter. I could go on now for about an hour but I'll spare the eventual readers of this comment and myself the time. In summary, the movie was a waste of money.

I honestly don't understand how more than 48% of the voters could give 10 points. 2/10 from me for the special effects which were extremely well made but this can't save a movie that lacks everything else.

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Funny and entertaining, 15 December 2004
8/10

After browsing through some of the comments about SC I wonder what these people expected. I liked the trailer, bought my ticket, watched it - and had plenty of fun. So much of it that I'll buy the DVD once it's out. Why? Well...the movie reminded me a lot - and probably with the intention of its makers - of old SF movies, as well as the 1936 b/w Flash Gordon series. Yes, it's sometimes cheesy, but I guess that's intentional as well. A few times I've caught myself thinking about the books of Jules Verne, some of the technical stuff (robots/planes/whatnot) of SC would blend right in there. I liked the CGI backgrounds too, some of them were quite fantastic to look at.

Another thing which made me laugh were the masterfully annoyed looks Polly shot at Joe, first after learning about Nanjing and later after she hit home with the shovel.

After all, I expect a movie to entertain me in this or that way. Either by a clever story, cool special effects, humour, good acting or what else is possible (sequence doesn't reflect my preferences). If it does that, I can glance over flaws (up to a point) and just watch it for fun, not for having the limits of cinema expanded or whatever other reasons. SC is what I call a "popcorn movie" - lean back and enjoy but don't think too much about it. Sky Captain DID entertain me, case closed.

JK'04 aka Elkrider