King Kong Lives
|King Kong Lives|
|Directed by||John Guillermin|
|Produced by||Martha Schumacher|
|Written by||Ronald Shusett
|Music by||John Scott|
|Edited by||Malcolm Cooke|
|Distributed by||De Laurentiis Entertainment Group|
King Kong Lives, also known as King Kong II, is a 1986 American monster film produced by De Laurentiis Entertainment Group. Directed by John Guillermin and featuring special effects by Carlo Rambaldi, the film starred Linda Hamilton and Brian Kerwin. The film was a sequel to the 1976 remake of King Kong.
King Kong, after being shot down from the World Trade Center, is kept alive in a coma for about 10 years at the Atlanta Institute, under the care of surgeon Dr. Amy Franklin (Linda Hamilton). In order to save Kong's life, Dr. Franklin must perform a heart transplant and give Kong a computer-monitored artificial heart. However, he lost so much blood that a transfusion is badly needed, and to complicate matters, Franklin says there no species of ape or other animal whose blood type matches Kong's. Enter adventurer Hank "Mitch" Mitchell (Brian Kerwin), who captures a giant female gorilla, who is dubbed "Lady Kong"; in Borneo (Mitchell theorizes that Borneo and the island from the first movie were once part of the same landmass), bringing her to the Institute so her blood can be used for Kong's operation. The transfusion and the heart transplant are a success, but Kong escapes along with the female.
Archie Nevitt (John Ashton), an insane army lieutenant colonel, is called in with his men to hunt down and kill the two apes. Lady Kong is captured alive by Nevitt's troops and imprisoned; Kong falls from a cliff and is presumed dead. But as Franklin and Mitchell soon discover, Kong's artificial heart is beginning to give out, forcing them to try a jailbreak only to discover that Lady Kong is pregnant with Kong's offspring. The jailbreak is successful thanks to Kong, who survived his fall and breaks his mate out. After being followed, attacked, and shot by the military, Kong kills Lt. Col Nevitt and dies slowly near a military base on a farm where Lady Kong gives birth to a healthy baby boy. Kong reaches out to touch his son just before dying. Returned to Borneo, Lady Kong is now living peacefully with her son in the jungle.
- Brian Kerwin as Hank Mitchell
- Linda Hamilton as Dr. Amy Franklin
- Peter Elliott as King Kong
- John Ashton as Lt.Col. Archie Nevitt
- George Yiasoumi as Lady Kong
- Benjamin Kechley as Baby Kong
- Frank Maraden as Dr. Benson Hughes
- Peter Michael Goetz as Dr. Andrew Ingersoll
- Jimmie Ray Weeks as Major Peete
- Jimmy Wiggins as Boyfriend
- Mary Swafford as Girlfriend
- Michael Forest as Vance
- Leon Rippy as Will
- Herschel Sparber as Jay
- Wallace Merck as Scruffy
- Dean Whitworth as Chiggers
- Jonathan Canfield as Military Jump Ranger #1
- Jack Wheeler (twin) as Military Officer #1
- Joe Wheeler (twin) as Military Officer #2
- David Hartzell as Military Sergeant #1
- Patrick Webb as Infantry
- Greg Hendrixson as Jump Ranger #2
- Jeff Bridges as Jack Prescott (prologue archival footage from King Kong (1976) - Uncredited)
- Jessica Lange as Dwan (prologue archival footage from King Kong (1976) - Uncredited)
King Kong Lives received negative reviews. Rotten Tomatoes rated a 0% based on 9 reviews. Roger Ebert gave the film only one out of four stars and stated, "The problem with everyone in King Kong Lives is that they're in a boring movie, and they know they're in a boring movie, and they just can't stir themselves to make an effort."
Despite its marketing campaign, King Kong Lives was a box office flop, grossing $4.7 million during its theatrical run. The film was nominated for one Razzie Award, Worst Visual Effects. Actor Peter Goetz received a residual check of 12 cents from the film and decided to frame it as a tribute, never cashing it.
Two official video games based on the movie were developed and released only in Japan by Konami and titled King Kong 2: Ikari no Megaton Punch for the Famicom, and King Kong 2: Yomigaeru Densetsu for the MSX. The Famicom game totally discarded the human aspect of the story and players played as King Kong who has to travel around the globe fighting giant robots and certain military forces in order to save the female Kong. The game was designed as an action adventure game with some science fiction concepts. The MSX version, on the other hand, plays from the perspective of Mitchell. This version is a role-playing game.
- DE LAURENTIIS REJOINS THE RANKS--AT EMBASSY: DE LAURENTIIS: EMBASSY Friendly, David T. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 16 Nov 1985: e1.
- Beale, Lewis (1986-06-01). "The Kong Isn't Dead; Long Live The King". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
- Oates, Marylouise (1986-06-15). "Finally, A Steady Job For King Kong". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
- Goldstein, Patrick (1986-12-22). "Movie Review : King Kong Goes Ape One More Time". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
- Maslin, Janet (1986-12-20). "Screen: the return of king kong". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
- "King Kong Lives". Variety. 1985-12-31. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
- "King Kong Lives :: rogerebert.com :: Reviews". Rogerebert.suntimes.com. 1986-12-22. Retrieved 2012-06-17.
- Mathews, Jack (1986-12-24). "'Kong Lives' Dies At Box Office". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
- "King Kong Lives (1986)". Box Office Mojo. 1988-07-05. Retrieved 2012-06-17.
- Wilson, John (2005). The Official Razzie Movie Guide: Enjoying the Best of Hollywood's Worst. Grand Central Publishing. ISBN 0-446-69334-0.
- King Kong Lives at the Internet Movie Database
- King Kong Lives at AllMovie
- King Kong Lives at Rotten Tomatoes
- King Kong Lives at Box Office Mojo
- Kongisking.net's first review for King Kong Lives
- Kongisking.net's second review for King Kong Lives