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King Kong (1933)

Passed | | Adventure, Horror, Sci-Fi | 7 April 1933 (USA)
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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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Popularity
3,124 ( 116)
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:

A Monster of Creation's Dawn Breaks Loose in Our World Today! 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:

The 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

For the scenes of Ann in Kong's hand, the hand was attached to a crane and raised ten feet. First a technician put her in the hand and closed the fingers around her. Then the hand was lifted for filming. She would later say her terror in those scenes was real. The more she struggled, the looser the hand's grip grew. When she thought she was about to fall, she had to signal Merian C. Cooper to stop filming. See more »

Goofs

(at around 43 mins) When Kong is looking at Ann when she is tied to the sacrificial altar, the pillars of the model altar cast shadows on his chest, but there is no shadow of Ann between them. 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 Crazy Climber (1980) 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

Holy Mackerel, what a show!
1 March 2002 | by baz-15See all my reviews

I could never tire of this movie, i've seen it so many times and always watch it when it's on tv-in fact i watched it just a week ago! It's one of those films that is rewatchable countless times, like many other 'monster' movies. But this is the best 'monster' movie , it is so well made-it is a masterpiece. Everything is right-the effects,the photography,the score,pacing,continuity. My favourite part would be the big middle chunk on the island. Ann captured-natives dance-a sacrifice to kong-rescue mission-defeat of stegasoraus-swamp adventure-swamp escape-log catastrophe-trex battle-snake creature fight-pterydactil disposal-rescue/escape-kong wrecks village-gas bomb. There is almost no let up in the action in this sequence. I have seen two versions of the film though. One was cut, the other wasn't. Some scenes that were cut: kong pulls a native out of his hut and stomps him into the mud. Brilliant. Also the bits when kong chews a native, and when he chews on a new yorker. And when he throws a woman down from a scraper into the street. Needless cutting in my book. A lot of people complain about the acting. The acting is swell. Robert Armstrong is perfect as the over enthusiastic director who is completely responsible for the deaths of hundreds of innocent people but has absolutely no scruples about it. He provides the silent chuckles of the movie e.g my one line summary is actually what denham says when he sees the savages and their dancing. And Bruce Cabot to Fay Wray: ' hey, i guess i love you!' in a moment of clarity. Overall a smashing film with a great climax. And kong is supposed to have the hots for fay wray too when he plays with her and her clothes


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