What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the movie includes numerous violent scenes that may be frightening for younger viewers and some action pushing the PG-13 edge. Specifically, humans are attacked on the island by giant bugs, bats, and dinosaurs in sustained, pounding action scenes. Kong shifts from scary (chest-pounding and roaring) to sympathetic; he's attacked brutally by men in tanks and planes, shooting guns. Characters drink and smoke cigarettes; Ann wears a slip through most of her adventures on the island. Most troubling is the depiction of the black island natives, who appear as nightmarish, surreal images, chanting and shaking when they sacrifice Ann to Kong. The showbiz version of this scene (recreated in New York) uses blackface performers.
- Families can talk about the relationship between Ann and Kong. How does their mutual affection extend beyond person and pet, to something more complicated? How does Denham's exploitation of Kong parallel his exploitation of people? How do the military attacks make Kong increasingly sympathetic (even an underdog, out of place in the city), as he tries to protect Ann and then she tries to protect him? How do the blackface performers serve as commentary on mainstream fear of the "unknown"?