What impressed me the most about the film (well, really this is a movie not a film, no matter what some of the more rabid fans would have you believe) was it seemed to be a true return to form for the director, Peter Jackson. I first discovered Peter Jackson when I was in fourth grade. There was an extensive production article on Meet the Feebles in the first issue of Fangoria I ever bought (it had a picture of a Gremlin from Gremlins 2 on the cover as I recall). I was blown away that someone halfway across the world could be making movies that we were talking about in the US for basically no money and involving some of the weirdest stuff I had ever heard of at the time (fourth grade, guys, fourth grade) I tracked down a copy of Bad Taste at the local Alfalfa Video Store (the chain was later taken over by Blockbuster but not before I bought my first GWAR album there)and proceeded to watch it with all my friends. I evntually bought that copy and still pull it out occasionally to remind myself why I loved Jackson so mch. He followed Feebles up with Braindead, still the most accomplished zombie comedy (or zomcom) ever made. It was certainly the goriest.
Then tragedy struck Peter Jackson's fans: he got a girlfriend. Fran Walsh moved in and basically ruined Jackson for his genre fans, pushing him to make films like Heavenly Creatures and something called Lord of the Rings. Oh, sure The Frighteners gave us a small taste of Peter's original charms but I knew it was over once I saw Fellowship of the Ring. Little fairies running about the New Zealand countryside trying to convince the audience that this really is cool. But I never bought it.
When I first heard that Kong was a go again I had some reservations. What if this becomes a neutered story of a devoted animal and his snuggle bunny blonde? I've already had a remake of Mighty Joe Young, thank you. Fran was on board again and I would be willing to bet that she is responsible for many of the new kong's more superfluous side tracks aboard the Venture as well as the mystifying subploy involving a black sailor and the young white kid he takes uder his wing. That subplot went absolutely nowhere and if his wife hadn't written it Jackson surely would have cut it.
But, but, BUT Kong works more often than not because Jackson is making a real monster movie here, not some ridiculous ode to middle earth.