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King Kong (1933)

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A film crew goes to a tropical island for an exotic location shoot and discovers a colossal ape who takes a shine to their female blonde star. He is then captured and brought back to New York City for public exhibition.

Directors:

Merian C. Cooper (uncredited), Ernest B. Schoedsack (uncredited)

Writers:

James Ashmore Creelman (screen play) (as James Creelman), Ruth Rose (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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3,865 ( 1,971)
3 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Fay Wray ... Ann Darrow
Robert Armstrong ... Carl Denham
Bruce Cabot ... John Driscoll
Frank Reicher ... Capt. Englehorn
Sam Hardy ... Charles Weston
Noble Johnson ... Native Chief
Steve Clemente Steve Clemente ... Witch King (as Steve Clemento)
James Flavin ... Second Mate Briggs
King Kong ... The Eighth Wonder of the World
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Storyline

Carl Denham needs to finish his movie and has the perfect location; Skull Island. But he still needs to find a leading lady. This 'soon-to-be-unfortunate' soul is Ann Darrow. No one knows what they will encounter on this island and why it is so mysterious, but once they reach it, they will soon find out. Living on this hidden island is a giant gorilla and this beast now has Ann in it's grasps. Carl and Ann's new love, Jack Driscoll must travel through the jungle looking for Kong and Ann, whilst avoiding all sorts of creatures and beasts. Written by Film_Fan

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Out-leaping the maddest imaginings! Out-thrilling the wildest thrills! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 April 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

King Ape See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$670,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$10,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (restored) | (original cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Photophone System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

To keep in line with the use of most of the cast from The Most Dangerous Game (1932), the role of Jack Driscoll was intended for Joel McCrea. According to Fay Wray, however, McCrea's agents demanded more money, so the role was given to Bruce Cabot. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 18 mins) When Kong stomps on the natives, the hut he pulls the one native out of is lit from within, as if it had electric lights. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Charles Weston: Say, is this the moving picture ship?
Watchman: The Venture? Yeah. Are you going on this crazy voyage?
Charles Weston: What's crazy about it?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening Card: And the prophet said: "And lo, the beast looked upon the face of beauty. And it stayed its hand from killing. And from that day, it was as one dead." Old Arabian Proverb See more »

Alternate Versions

Other than the sequence where Kong pulls Fay Wray's clothes off, here are the other scenes that were cut in the late '30s, and not restored until the '70s:
  • All scenes of the Brontasourus biting sailors, including the sequence where a sailor climbs to the top of a tree, and soon, a dinosaur comes and takes him away in his mouth.
  • Kong biting and chewing natives when he breaks through the gate on Skull Island, and squashing one under his giant foot.
  • Kong biting a New Yorker when he escapes from the theater.
  • Kong picking a sleeping woman from her hotel room, inspecting her and upon deciding that she's not Ann throwing her to the sidewalk several stories below. Though these scenes were fully restored in 35mm to the 1972 re-release, some prints in the 1960s used 35mm blow-ups of an old uncensored 16mm print to restore the shots, creating a noticeable drop in quality. The 1972 restoration gets the censored shots that were discovered in an uncut British 35mm print from 1933.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Misfits: Episode #2.5 (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

St. Louis Blues
(1914) (uncredited)
Music by W.C. Handy
Whistled by Robert Armstrong
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
The First King Kong Still Going Strong
29 November 2005 | by ccthemovieman-1See all my reviews

With the recent DVD release of this film, and the latest version on the big screen being released two days from this writing, I hope more people take the opportunity to check this movie out, the original King Kong, if they've never seen it.

This movie must have been astounding to the people watching it over 70 years ago. I doubt they'd ever seen anything like this, action-wise, and monster-wise. It is still fascinating today, even with the great advancements in special effects.

Most action films from the classic years, from 1920 to the late 1960s had corny mostly unrealistic special effects but this film still holds up, extraordinarily so considering its age. The film also had a tremendous amount of action. Young people today are usually bored watching old black-and-white movies but they wouldn't be bored with this one. Once the "girl," Fay Wray gets captured by King Kong, the rest of the movie is one long action scene.

Kong was not the only beast in the movie, either, which surprised me the first time I ever saw this. Protecting Wray, Kong battles a dinosaur, a giant snake, a giant bird and then human beings firing bullets and bombs at him.

Wray also was fun to watch, but I''m a male so a pretty woman like her - shockingly exposing her breasts in one scene, too - makes it easier to enjoy the film. Her screaming, however, can get on your nerves. She must have been hoarse for a month after filming this movie.

Robert Armstrong, as the film director, and Bruce Cabot, as the ship crewman and Wray''s rescuer, also are interesting to watch and hear. As I said, once the action kicks in, the his a very entertaining movie and impossible to put down.


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