This is definitely not the classic that inspired the likes of Peter Jackson
to get into film-making, but its definitely worth checking out. For one thing, Jeff Bridges
! In full Dude beard! Sure, toward the end he doesn't have that much to say except an expected hippie sympathy for the captured ape, but he's quite the badass in the beginning, sneaking on that boat and talking his way onto the expedition.
Having seen the 1933 original
quite recently (and Jackson's 2005 remake
somewhat less recently), its amazing how much of this movie (once they land on the island at least) is exactly shot for shot remaking the original (I guess this can be seen as good or bad, depending on how you take it). The great thing that sets this one apart is that its set in more modern times (as the 05 version is set in the 30s) - cool to see how Kong reacts to a 70s New York, and how the energy crisis plays into all of it.
The only thing I can say I really don't like about the film is, of course, the buxom Dwan
(no, spelled it right), at least when she opens her mouth. Also, Harryhausen
's stop motion was a technical feat for that time, and this film's man-in-a-suit route has some good-for-the-time compositing but the obvious lack of proper proportion couldn't be solved for all the leaning over & resting on your knee in the world. Though, in Jackson's remake, they speculate the creatures have been evolving over millions of years uninterrupted so maybe Kong is supposed to be more "man-like" in this one. A fun thought, at least.