The knowledge that I’m now old enough to have my youth remade is too depressing to offer much insight here. Has it really been 27 years since the winter of 1984 when the original came out? And yet somehow, after over a quarter century later, the soundtrack is still seared in my memory as a never-ending playlist loop of Kenny Loggins demanding I get footloose.
This looks ridiculous. Story-ridiculous, special effects-ridiculous. Give me “Conquest of the Planet of the Apes” any day. To mine eyes, all this expensive, modern CGI looks less convincing than the masks, costumes, and make-up we saw in the original “Apes” franchise, including the later films which had been victims of larger and larger budget cuts with each new chapter.
It’s all about suspending disbelief and no matter how “cool” the effects, CGI makes suspending disbelief much more difficult than something organic. This is true of”King Kong,” as well. At no time does the stop-motion in the 1933 film take me out of the story. In fact, it still delights me to no end, especially Kong’s fight with the T-Rex. The big-budget 2005 version, however, with tens of million in sci-fi wizardry, might look more real to the eye, but the brain just doesn’t buy it.
When it comes to computer effects, something in my mind always fires off a warning labelled “artificial.”