2001 Universal (UK) Edition
Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack
Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong, Bruce Cabot,
discover, and hope to capture, a giant ape on a remote tropical island.
of the greatest fantasy films ever made, the 1933 version of King Kong will
need no introduction to movie buffs, although a couple of generations may
need to be convinced of its merits in the wake of
2001 Region 2 disc from Polygram reveals secrets and shortcomings that have
been hidden in previous VHS releases, which were unavoidably smeary.
Polygramís presentation is far from pristine, though: it has harsh
contrast, and constant signs of wear and tear. Itís also quite tightly
cropped, so much so that David O Selznickís Executive Producer credit
almost falls off the bottom of the screen, and the image is noticeably
off-centre throughout the credits, (and, presumably, throughout the rest
of the film). Although the presentation is generally acceptable,
particularly the 2.0 mono sound (at 192kbps), which is relatively robust,
other - better - versions are likely to follow.
The disc also contains the
twenty-five minute King Kong - It Was Beauty Killed The Beast documentary,
an American production made for the filmís 60th anniversary.
Itís a fairly cursory point A to point B history of the film that will
tell casual purchasers everything they need to know, and may even satisfy
more dedicated fans.
October 2005 Update:
This edition will soon be superseded by a new R2 edition from Universal,
and a lavish Special Edition from Warner Home Video in the US.
More information about the new R2 release can be found