Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby AllosaurHell » Tue Aug 13, 2019 6:26 pm

King Kong Escapes is underrated in my opinion, I really enjoy it and I wish Toho kept the rights because I would have loved to have seen a sequel and Kong appear in Destroy All Monsters (which has been my favorite movie since childhood).
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby Living Corpse » Tue Aug 13, 2019 6:33 pm

AllosaurHell wrote:King Kong Escapes is underrated in my opinion, I really enjoy it and I wish Toho kept the rights because I would have loved to have seen a sequel and Kong appear in Destroy All Monsters (which has been my favorite movie since childhood).


I remember reading they wanted King Kong for DAM but didn't pursue it as they knew it was too much effort. Such a shame, what have been awesome to see him team up with so many monsters in what had to have been the ultimate monster crossover back then.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby AllosaurHell » Tue Aug 13, 2019 7:36 pm

Living Corpse wrote:
AllosaurHell wrote:King Kong Escapes is underrated in my opinion, I really enjoy it and I wish Toho kept the rights because I would have loved to have seen a sequel and Kong appear in Destroy All Monsters (which has been my favorite movie since childhood).


I remember reading they wanted King Kong for DAM but didn't pursue it as they knew it was too much effort. Such a shame, what have been awesome to see him team up with so many monsters in what had to have been the ultimate monster crossover back then.

I know right?! Hell I would have loved to have seen Kong climb up the Empire State building had he made it into DAM.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby The Octopus » Sat Aug 17, 2019 6:25 pm

I just wanted to show this because where else can you see Kong lying on the ground sucking his thumb. :lol:

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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby JAGzilla » Thu May 07, 2020 9:41 pm

Just got done watching this for the first time. It... is not one of Toho's better kaiju movies, between the dull, sluggish second half, some odd writing here and there, and Linda Miller's nails-on-a-chalkboard yelling at Kong.

But it has its moments, notably the battle with Gorosaurus, and it's certainly very unique. Dr. Who is a very different kind of villain from the Toho norm, and the whole concept of enslaving a giant monster for use as a beast of burden stands out from the usual 'destroy Tokyo' motivation.

Also, why is the poor Giant Sea Snake so overlooked? The Giant Octopus and Giant Condor are well known and brought up all the time, but you'd hardly know this guy exists. And that's terrible.

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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Fri May 08, 2020 4:22 am

JAGzilla wrote:Just got done watching this for the first time. It... is not one of Toho's better kaiju movies, between the dull, sluggish second half, some odd writing here and there, and Linda Miller's nails-on-a-chalkboard yelling at Kong.


"KONG PUT ME DOWN, KONG!"
Without seeing the film in a few years her voice rings out :D

But it has its moments, notably the battle with Gorosaurus, and it's certainly very unique. Dr. Who is a very different kind of villain from the Toho norm, and the whole concept of enslaving a giant monster for use as a beast of burden stands out from the usual 'destroy Tokyo' motivation.

I think the film definitely has some interesting things weighed down by some of the more boring stuff. Mechani-Kong is cool, and actually gets a lot of play outside of the film in Godzilla comics, but unfortunately doesn't really have a big final fight with Kong like something like WOG.

But yeah, all the stuff with treating the monsters as beasts of burden are very interesting. I like how the film ends on the defeat of Dr. Who, not Mechanic-Kong as well. I remember the helicopter scene where Kong is captured as being good too. I think overall it did a lot of interesting things. I keep meaning to track down a Japanese version but I can't. Maybe I might watch it tomorrow.

Also, why is the poor Giant Sea Snake so overlooked? The Giant Octopus and Giant Condor are well known and brought up all the time, but you'd hardly know this guy exists. And that's terrible.

Probably because of Manda and the fact that within the fandom KKE is more obscure.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby Terasawa » Fri May 08, 2020 5:44 am

Yeah, KKE is far from Honda’s best. I think the U.S. version is superior to the original. The cuts are usually so good that you could probably watch both versions back to back and have a hard time recalling exactly what was removed. They managed to trim nearly 10 minutes but not lose anything critical.

That said, there are two pretty big problems with the U.S. version. The first is the soundtrack editing: Ifukube’s score suffers at every cut. The second is the late Julie Bennett’s vocal performance as Susan. (Linda Miller was dubbed in the Japanese version and looped in the Americanization.) Bennett is much better as Madame Piranha. The dubbing altogether is very cartoony although I think everyone agrees that Paul Frees nailed his characterization of Dr. Who.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby Crazy Jim Films » Fri May 08, 2020 11:45 pm

Always had a soft spot for King Kong Escapes but was actually fine with Kong disappearing from the Godzilla universe after KKvG. I think he works better as his own entity than as a supporting player on Monster Island.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Sat May 09, 2020 12:17 am

I rewatched this a few hours ago. Decent, and some cool stuff but some of the scenes at the arctic base once Kong is captured drag on and make little sense. I wonder if the Japanese cut makes more sense. For example, Madam Pirahana invites Nelson to drink with her, then Who comes in and throws Nelson back in, only for him to take Nelson out to play chess, while "freezing" the others. It seems like this is going on for a long time, and abruptly they stop playing chess, and who says he killed Nelson and asks for their help. Suddenly Kong gets angry, and they have a chance to escape, but are re-captured. Only to then be freed by Madam Pirahana once again. The screens don't logically flow well together, and Madam Piranha feels so wishy-washy. Not a big issue, but it drags down the middle of the film.

Additionally, while I originally wouldn't complain about something like this, I can't help but wish we got more action. When Kong Escapes, literally the namesake of the film, he just runs away and jumps in the water. Mechani-Kong is sent after him, but not before giving up an instant later. It would've been cooler if we saw Kong destroy some stuff on the arctic base, maybe fight some of Dr. Who's forces, and briefly fight Mechanism-Kong before retreating. I know these are just publicity stills, but really more there would have helped:
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Then when they get to Tokyo, again I wanted more with the two monsters. I like the whole tower climbing scene, there was more going on than I originally thought, but it should've come after a more intense battle on the ground. The only destruction we get is Mechani-Kong coming through a building. The film after building up Mechani-Kong for so long needed more of a struggle than just Mechanical Kong briefly punching Kong and hypnotizing him. Even having Mechani Kong attack the armed forces would have done wonders.

I like this film, but if certain things were just...better than I think it would've been a Kaiju classic rather than one of the more obscure supplementary Toho films. I do also like this and KKVG as sequels/continuations to 1933 than some of the remakes and rehashes.
Last edited by LSD Jellyfish on Sat May 09, 2020 12:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby JAGzilla » Sat May 09, 2020 5:00 am

LSD Jellyfish wrote:I rewatched this a few hours ago. Decent, and some cool stuff but some of the scenes at the arctic base once Kong is captured drag on and make little sense. I wonder if the Japanese cut makes more sense. For example, Madam Pirahana invites Nelson to drink with her, then Who comes in and throws Nelson back in, only for him to take Nelson out to play chess, while "freezing" the others. It seems like this is going on for a long time, and abruptly they stop playing chess, and who says he killed Nelson and asks for their help. Suddenly Kong gets angry, and they have a chance to escape, but are re-captured. Only to then be freed by Madam Pirahana once again. The screens don't logically flow well together, and Madam Piranha feels so wishy-washy. Not a big issue, but it drags down the middle of the film.


Agreed with all of this. Also, given the timing, it seemed like it was supposed to be Susan's screaming that enraged Kong, but then he just runs away once he's loose, so I guess it's just a weird coincidence?

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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby The Octopus » Sat May 09, 2020 7:30 am

I love this movie for one reason and one reason only. Since I was a small child, I always wanted to see a giant ape go for a swim in frigid polar waters while being chased by a giant mechanical ape. This movie has such a scene.


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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby Kaiju-King42 » Sat May 09, 2020 10:41 am

LSD Jellyfish wrote:Image



Not gonna lie, this image is perfect meme material.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby HedorahIsBestGirl » Sun May 10, 2020 6:23 am

Has anyone here seen the Japanese version and is it better? The Japanese version of King Kong vs. Godzilla is exponentially better than the US release that I grew up with and I'm bitter that I was in my 20s before we got a proper home media release. To anyone who has seen both versions, will I have the same experience of watching the Japanese release of KKE and seeing a totally different, superior, film or did the edits not do as much damage to this one?
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby Terasawa » Sun May 10, 2020 7:46 am

IMO the US version is better. Nearly all of the cuts tighten up the pacing and they don’t remove anything important. Rankin/Bass’ version plays as a streamlined version of the film.

Like WOTG, there’s some Toho footage in the US version that went unused in Honda’s cut. The opening scene with Linda Miller (“I have plenty of castor oil in the sick bay.”) is exclusive to the US version. The first Madame Piranha and Nelson encounter also has different footage in both versions.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby Kaiju-King42 » Sun May 10, 2020 9:06 am

Terasawa wrote:IMO the US version is better.


Even with that godawful screaming from the blonde? I would have hoped the Japanese version would have made that more tolerable.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby Terasawa » Sun May 10, 2020 9:47 am

Kaiju-King42 wrote:
Terasawa wrote:IMO the US version is better.


Even with that godawful screaming from the blonde? I would have hoped the Japanese version would have made that more tolerable.


As I said way up on this page, Julie Bennett’s vocal performance as Susan is one of two critical problems with the U.S. version (the other being the soundtrack editing). But I can live with that because the movie flows better.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby King of the Monsters » Sun May 10, 2020 10:55 am

I personally always loved this movie. Mechani-Kong is one of my favorite kaiju, and the final battle is a brilliant spin on the classic King Kong climax. I liked the characters as well, especially the legendary Dr. Who. It feels very much like a live-action cartoon with elements of classic Bond films mixed in. Aside from Susan's voice, I actually enjoy the U.S. cut quite a bit and don't mind watching it over the Japanese version.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Sun May 10, 2020 6:22 pm

HedorahIsBestGirl wrote:Has anyone here seen the Japanese version and is it better? The Japanese version of King Kong vs. Godzilla is exponentially better than the US release that I grew up with and I'm bitter that I was in my 20s before we got a proper home media release. To anyone who has seen both versions, will I have the same experience of watching the Japanese release of KKE and seeing a totally different, superior, film or did the edits not do as much damage to this one?

I found the Japanese version on "the usual" site. I'll give it a watch maybe tomorrow and report back.
_JNavs_ wrote:The MV is like cheap imitation crabmeat, it tastes good, but it isn't real, while Shin is kino peak Japanese performance.

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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby HedorahIsBestGirl » Sun May 10, 2020 6:26 pm

LSD Jellyfish wrote:I found the Japanese version on "the usual" site. I'll give it a watch maybe tomorrow and report back.

Probably the same "usual" site I used for Gorath, Human Vapor and Half Human. I might check it out tomorrow, too, if I'm bored enough, but it's my only day off and I don't know if I want to spend it looking at that hideous Kong suit.
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Re: Talkback: King Kong Escapes (1967)

Postby LSD Jellyfish » Fri May 15, 2020 3:44 am

Watching the Japanese cut right now. I'm 12 mins it and instantly I noticed a pretty major difference:

The Japanese cut makes Dr. Who's and Madame Piranhas relationship make way more sense, and already sets u the side switching and double crossing. In the Japanese cut, it's more clear that element X will be used to make weapons and conquer the world, with Who noting how quickly it will take to make weapons and that "The United States and Soviets" can't compete. When the first Mechanic-Kong fails, Who admits failure, but admits that this proves that Element X is stronger than thought, giving more emphasis of why this is worthy pursuit.

The biggest change though, is how Dr. Who threatens Madame Piranha when she begins to leave. IIRC, in the American cut he talks her back in, but it comes off as way more pathetic. In the Japanese cut, he states that he is still there, and has no problem helping other countries retrieve and use element X. I think this is really important, because in the English dub it makes little sense why Madame Piranha is so quick to jump back and forth, or why Dr. Who is such a big threat. I'll keep updating this as I watch.

Added in 1 hour 51 minutes 27 seconds:
So I finished the full film, again. Honestly, not too much is different or changed. There's some minor development with Madame Piranha that gets removed, and some characterization with Who as well, but really both films are identical. Either cut is fine and has advantages and disadvantages with it's cast. The Japanese cut offers some slight clarity into what is going on and the present goals are.
_JNavs_ wrote:The MV is like cheap imitation crabmeat, it tastes good, but it isn't real, while Shin is kino peak Japanese performance.

Rodan95 wrote:The Shobijin are sat on by a fatass explorer and killed. Mothra is pissed and destroys Japan.


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