FUZZY WUZZY IS BACK!
Nurse G and Zappa were just kids when they saw Jessica Lange in King King. At the point in the movie when Kong is climbing the Empire State Building and dodging attacks from planes and guns, little Nurse G whimpered, "Poor ol' Fuzzy Wuzzy." She cried right there in the theater. His nickname as stuck to this day.
This gorilla of a film is blockbuster of the year
There's a beautiful moment with Kong sitting on top of a mountain, Ann in the palm of his hand, both watching the sunset. I actually heard one tough broad of a movie executive sobbing. [Director Peter] Jackson evokes such a sense of empathy for his beast that Kleenex should be sold along with the popcorn.
King Kong truly is an 8,000lb gorilla of a movie. I'm still marvelling at a scene where a herd of brachiosaurus stampede as they are pursued by predators with teeth the size of carving knives.
Then, just when you think such a sequence can't be topped, Kong pounds to rescue his damsel in distress when some hungry velociraptors mistake her for a snack.
An almighty battle ensues and it's at this point Kong goes from super monster to super hero in Ann's eyes.
Behind the scenes ...
THE BIG APE-LE
[Director Peter Jackson] constructed a three-by-four-block Big Apple replica at his production studio in Wellington, New Zealand.
"A lot of people think that shooting New York in New Zealand is kind of a crazy notion," Jackson says in a making-of "Kong" DVD due out Dec. 13. "Why don't we go to New York and shoot it for real?"
Here's why: Jackson, fresh from his Oscar win for the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, is skipping over the hokey, modernized 1976 remake and turning back the clock in homage to the original's release in 1933.
"Shooting modern-day New York as 1933 is almost impossible," he says. "I mean, the city is hard to shoot in the rest of the time, and to actually dress large sections and control large sections of it would be very difficult."
Jackson's well-chronicled eye for detail covers more than every last computer-generated hair on Kong's head.
In his grimy Depression-era big town, Model T Fords roll through intersections of red and green streetlights (no yellow), blasting that wheezy dying-duck horn and narrowly missing a swarm of jaywalkers.
Stroll along the old-timey storefronts, and you'll pass shops like Flannery Watts Tobacco & Snuff, Kneebone Apothecary for Prescriptions and a Ten Cent Barber shop. There's even an F.S. Huffman Gunsmith, where you can "buy, sell and exchange" firearms. Clearly, this is pre-Giuliani New York.