Kong Unbound proudly sports an Official Movie Merchandise
sticker, a bold statement and one that is usually kept for
art and script books. This is no such beast, for once officialdom
appears to have moved away from the usual tat to produce a
book that is full of reminiscences, whimsy and thoughtful
The book contains sixteen essays by some of the greatest living
science fiction writers and creators, who are old enough to
remember the impact of seeing the original 1933 King Kong.
Like most forms of entertainment, many of the writers took
differing thoughts and feelings away from the experience of
Kong, though most are willing to agree that the experience
had a profound effect on their chosen professions. Well, to
be fair it would have been unlikely that any publishing house
would have put out a book espousing the idea that the 1933
film was a load of old tat, no money in that me hearties.
is it any good? Although more light-hearted and personal,
the essays, are more like those found in serious book on film
making. That said the editors have obviously let the authors
have full reign over what they wanted to write. And what writers
they found Ray Bradbury, Harry Harrison and David Gerrold
to name a few.
Di Filippo ponders how the retelling of a myth often brings
just diminishing returns; whilst, Robert Silverberg explores
the genesis of the myth that is Kong. There are many
truly wacky essays that treat Ann Darrow as a real character,
rather than one played by Fay Wray, as well as the usual explorations
around the ideas of Kong as rape fantasy.
Kong a metaphor for white supremacy, or the destruction
of the vital and animalistic spirit of man through continued
industrialisation or just a dodgy old film with a rather nice
partially clothed Fay Wray running round screaming I'll leave
that up to you? But within this book you'll find many ideas
to challenge and illuminate your experience of watching King
the down side the editors really should have given over just
one essay to how the film came to be made, too many of the
writers include this information, which often spoils, what
otherwise are great essays. That aside this is a book for
lovers of films who demand a little more thoughtful approach
to the often too passive joy of watching movies.
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