King Kong: The Legend Reborn Review

A film crew get more than they bargained for when on a location shoot.

by Kim Newman |
Published on
Release Date:

03 Jan 1976

Running Time:

135 minutes



Original Title:

King Kong: The Legend Reborn

The 1976 remake of the 1933 masterpiece which Dino de Laurentiis had the nerve to tout as "the most original screen spectacle of all time". Updating the great ape story to the 70s and throwing in some ecological blather, this ends up not on the Empire State Building but with Rick Baker's man-in-a-suit Kong leaping between the towers of the World Trade Centre which, as was said at the time, is like Cecil B. DeMille having Christ crucified on a Star of David.

Forgetting the desecration, though, this is almost watchable, with Jessica Lange in her first starring role as the girl in the hairy paw, and pleasant support from Jeff Bridges and Charles Grodin. Some of the effects are laughable, but Baker's expressive ape mask is simply outstanding

The lamest of the three versions but the performances are bearable.

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