News for Mar. 12, 2006

Invention & Technology Magazine Talks Kong

3/12/06, 6:27 pm EST - Xoanon

Tom Huntington writes: The movie was originally called The Beast, then The Eighth Wonder. By the time it opened in New York on March 2, 1933, it was King Kong. A fantastic tale of a huge gorilla from Skull Island that runs amok in New York City, King Kong has come down the years as one of the world’s greatest movies and the precursor of today’s special-effects blockbusters. As The New York Times commented in 1933, it was “a remarkable example of the most up-to-date camera tricks … a series of multiple exposures, process shots, glass shots, miniatures and virtually everything that can be accomplished with a camera in a motionpicture studio.” Those “up-to-date camera tricks” may seem creaky in comparison to today’s digital work, but in its day King Kong set new standards for what could be done onscreen. And, for better or worse, it “pointed the way toward the current era of special effects, science fiction, cataclysmic destruction, and nonstop shocks,” in the words of the film critic Roger Ebert. [More]