“Believe it or not, there’s a little Kong!”
Wracked with guilt and looming debt, King Kong’s promoter (Robert Armstrong) joins his friend (Frank Reicher) on a sailing expedition, where he meets a beautiful runaway orphan (Helen Mack) and learns about hidden treasure on Skull Island from the unscrupulous man (John Marston) who gave him the original map. Little do they know they are about to encounter Kong’s friendly son on the island.
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
- Hidden Treasure
- Mutant Monsters
Response to Peary’s Review:
Peary writes that this “bargain-basement sequel to King Kong is a curio devoid of the original’s Freudian implications, mythic and dream elements” and notes that while “kids may like Kong, Jr.’s comical nature”, “fans of the original will be disappointed in most everything but the action finale.” He argues that the “picture is so rushed that one can’t even savor Willis O’Brien’s special effects”, but this isn’t quite true — there are a good handful of Kong-versus-beast battle scenes in the second half, though they don’t arrive until after an unnecessarily lengthy and unexceptional exposition. I agree with Peary that the “most interesting element as far as Kong lore goes is that Carl Denham [Armstrong] is very apologetic about what he felt he did to Kong in the original” — indeed, the entire movie is a form of apologia and redemption for Kong’s ignoble fate, with his son manifesting only his most helpful, playful, and silly qualities.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Willis O’Brien’s special effects
No; this one is for fans of the franchise.