KAIJU DAY MARATHON: The Mighty Kong (1998)

When someone asks you, because they will, “What was Dudley Moore’s last movie?” you can now confidently look them in the eye and say, “He played both Carl Denham and King Kong in the 1998 animated film The Mighty Kong.”

Somehow, this movie also features music by the Sherman Brothers. Yes, the same men who wrote the songs for Mary Poppins, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Aristocat and “It’s A Small World After All” for the Disney theme parks. And it has Jodi Benson (yes, Ariel herself) as the Fay Wray character.

All of these things sound fantastic until you see this movie, which is animated in perhaps the cheapest form of classic animation possible in 1998. Do not expect a Disney film but instead, Kong as told by folks trying their best to be Disney on a shoestring.

This is the same Kong story as always — it even borrows the waterfall scene from the 1976 remake — except beauty does not kill the beast. It does, however, knock it out for a  spell.

Art Scott only directed one movie and this is it. His career was mainly at Hanna Barbera, working on shows like The HerculoidsWacky RacesThe Fonz and the Happy Days Gang and more. He worked on several Disney shorts early in his career and even did some of the DTV animation pieces late in it. This was written by William J. Keenan, who was the right guy for the job, seeing as how he produced the 1966 American TV series of King Kong and wrote the translated dialogue for King Kong Escapes.

If you want a very kid-friendly intro to Kong, this will work. It’s on Tubi.

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