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King Kong (1933)

1933

NR CC

On a mysterious and dangerous island, a film producer captures a giant ape and brings him back to New York in the hopes of capitalizing on his prize.

Starring:
Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong
Runtime:
1 hour, 44 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Fantasy, Adventure, Horror
Director Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack
Starring Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong
Supporting actors Bruce Cabot, Frank Reicher, Sam Hardy, Noble Johnson, Steve Clemente, James Flavin, King Kong, Walter Ackerman, James Adamson, Van Alder, Ed Allen, Etta Mae Allen, Frank Angel, Roscoe Ates, Ralph Bard, Reginald Barlow, Leo Beard, Fred Behrle
Studio Warner Bros.
MPAA rating NR (Not Rated)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
A number of reviews have complained about this disc -- everything from "it's too grainy" to "it isn't wide screen." While this disc isn't eye-candy on the level of The Wizard Of Oz or Gone With The Wind, it is an excellent transfer of the movie, and a worthy upgrade to the DVD if you are a fan of the film.

First of all, remember a few things -- the film is over 80 years old, and the original negative is long gone. That being said, the restorers did a fine job. There are no scratches, specks or vertical lines to be seen anywhere -- they've all been removed. Contrast and gray scale are excellent with deep blacks. Some scenes (particularly all those scenes in the jungle) really show a remarkable amount of detail -- it's definitely hi-def! Casual viewers might stick with the DVD, but film buffs and Kong fans will find this blu-ray essential.

As far as the complaints are concerned, yes there is grain, but consider it a necessary evil: if they were to scrub it all away, the picture details would go with it. Plus it's not nearly so grainy as some would have you believe. A few scenes -- especially those in the fog on the ship -- are EXTREMELY grainy, but most of the film is far less so, especially considering that the original negative is lost. In any case it's not an issue -- it never interfered with my enjoyment of the film and I'm watching on a 50" plasma from about 10'. And for those don't know, this film wasn't made in wide screen -- the black bars on the side just mean that you're seeing the entire picture as it was filmed.

Over-all, this is an excellent -- and accurate! -- representation of the film, and certainly the best it has ever looked on home video.
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Format: DVD
From the Warner's press release
Three editions:
The King Kong: Two-Disc Special Edition (SRP $26.99) will include the 104-minute restored and remastered B&W film on video in its original full frame, with Dolby Digital 2.0 mono audio and English, French and Spanish subtitles. Extras will include audio commentary (by Ray Harryhausen and Ken Ralston, with Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack, Ruth Rose, Fay Wray and Robert Armstrong), the 2005 I'm Kong: The Exploits of Merian C. Cooper documentary, a gallery of trailers for other films by director Merian C. Cooper, the new RKO Production 601: The Making of Kong, Eighth Wonder of the World documentary by Peter Jackson (featuring the following featurettes: The Origins of King Kong, Willis O'Brien and Creation, Cameras Roll on Kong, The Eighth Wonder, A Milestone in Visual Effects, Passion, Sound and Fury, The Mystery of the Lost Spider Pit Sequence and King Kong's Legacy) and Creation test footage (with commentary by Ray Harryhausen).

The King Kong: Two-Disc Collector's Edition (SRP $39.98) will include all of the above in limited tin packaging that also features a 20-page reproduction of the original 1933 souvenir program, King Kong original one-sheet reproduction postcards and a mail-in offer for a reproduction of a vintage theatrical poster.

The King Kong Four-Disc Collector's Set (SRP $39.92) will include the King Kong: Two-Disc Special Edition along with The Son of Kong and Mighty Joe Young. It will NOT include the extras in the Collector's Edition tin.

Fortunately, The Son of Kong and Mighty Joe Young will also be available separately (as will The Last Days of Pompeii, also by Kong directors Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack) for an SRP of $19.97 each.
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Format: DVD
I have always loved the 1933 King Kong for its life-like special effects created by Willis O'Brien. It would be very difficult to reproduce a period piece such as this, yet that's exactly what Peter Jackson is attempting to do. I hope he succeeds, I really do, but...

You just can't beat the original. And it's not just the FX (spectacular for its day), but the slow build up to Kong and Kong's appearance in NYC...all just fantasic.

Here is some important news below! Warner and HP are digitally restoring King Kong for a new theatrical release followed by a multiple DVD release. This couldn't be better news for Kong fans! Since I'm sure Warner wishes to cash in on Peter Jackson's new magnum opus, we'll probably be seeing the DVDs at Amazon within the near future.

Warner Bros. Studios and HP breathe new life into classic motion pictures

Warner Bros. Studios and HP also announced that they have teamed to restore the 1933 classic motion picture "King Kong." One of the American Film Institute's 100 most beloved films and named to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress, the original camera negative of "King Kong" has long been destroyed, leaving only elements and prints that have been deteriorating over the years.

Warner Bros. Studios has brought the best elements and prints from all over the world and has scanned them into a 4K digital file. Using HP's "dirt and scratch" technology, which was developed by HP Labs, the 72-year-old classic will be digitally restored to its 1933 brilliance. A new camera negative as well as new archival elements will be created so that the film will be saved for generations to come. This new, restored version of "King Kong," as it was originally released, will be screened theatrically and broadcast on television, as well as released on Warner Home Video.
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