Monday, March 4, 2024

Featured: Anticipating ‘Kong: Skull Island’

Okay, so last week in this segment, I talked about how the posters and trailers for Logan were some of my favorite marketing I’ve seen in 2017. At the end of the year, they will be heavy contenders for me at our next InSession Film Awards. Kong: Skull Island‘s marketing may not be mentioned during our awards show next year, but the trailers and posters for Kong have been interesting to say the least. At this point, the film doesn’t even care that it’s imitating Apocalypse Now. Forget paying homage, every trailer and poster (the posters especially) is blatantly ripping off Apocalypse Now. I mean, just look at these:

Yep, that has Apocalypse Now written all over it. For further proof, here is the poster for Francis Ford Coppola’s classic:

As you can see, if you weren’t aware already, the posters for Kong: Skull Island don’t even care how on the nose they are in paying their respects. Now, I’m not saying this is a bad thing. I’m merely pointing out that the film, and its marketing team, is not afraid to show where it’s going tonally and aesthetically in terms of its influences. Will that work for the film? That’s a whole other question.

This could go one of two ways. Kong‘s homages could be so distracting to the point that it completely takes you out of the film. However, given how brazen the film seems to be pointing back to Apocalypse Now, that could mean that director Jordan Vogt-Roberts knows exactly what he’s doing in commenting on how war leads to lunacy. In a lot of ways, that’s what Apocalypse Now was tackling, and it makes sense to reiterate that same notion when nuclear “tests” lead to the creation of a giant ape. On paper, that’s actually a pretty smart tactic that could pay off here.

On the other hand, it could also be a (ahem) giant disaster. Vogt-Roberts will need a sharp focus to create the right balance of homage while thrusting forward the story of Kong: Skull Island and developing its characters. I can’t imagine that’s an easy task, but I’m excited to see where it goes. Personally, I think the film looks like a lot of fun. I’m not sold on the quality of the film, I’m dubious about Vogt-Roberts ability to nail the aforementioned balance, but that doesn’t hinder how much fun this film could be. Samuel L. Jackson and John C. Reilly look like they know what kind of movie they are in, and go all out in depicting that lunacy. It’s so weird and hammed up, and I love it.

Overall, Kong doesn’t seem to be taking itself that seriously. Perhaps the final product will be, but when I see the goofy qualities of the trailer + the blatantly ripped off posters, I can’t help but think that Vogt-Roberts wanted to render something more focused on entertainment, rather than quality. I’m not expecting anything nuanced or complex, I simply look forward to laughing at Reilly’s crazy antics, Jackson’s cliches and Brie Larson’s beautiful smile. Oh, and Loki too, of course.

What about you? Are you excited for Kong: Skull Island?


Here’s what else is coming to theaters this weekend:

Raw (limited)

Personal Shopper (limited)
The Sense of an Ending (limited)

JD Duran
JD Duran
InSession Film founder and owner. I love film. Love art. Love how it intersects with our real lives. My favorite movies include Citizen Kane, The 400 Blows, Modern Times, The Godfather and The Tree of Life. Follow me on Twitter @RealJDDuran. Follow us @InSessionFilm.

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