Dangerous Hunting Game

 DATELINE: Richard Connell Classic

 Fay Wray Sees Something!

If you are looking for the prequel to 1933’s King Kong,you will have found it with this first major adaption of Richard Connell’s famous (or infamous) story called The Most Dangerous Game.

Right from the opening credits, you will recognize the style and tone of the classic big monkey movie. That’s for a number of reasons: foremost, the producers of the Kong and Son thereof films honed their approach to the topic with this classic.

You have the basic premise of a sea captain taking his ship and passengers out into remote and uncharted waters where lurks an island with mystery. It almost seems like the same prologue to each film.  Officers are concerned with strange locales not on maps.

Instead of Bruce Bennett (or is that Cabot), you have interchangeable leading man Joel MacRae as the resilient young adventurer. When he is washed up on the shores of a strange island, he meets none other than Kong’s leading lady, Fay Wray, who is also stranded there with her brother, played by—you guessed it—the man who gave us the Eighth Wonder of the World—Robert G. Armstrong (not Carl Denham this time, but a ne’er-do-well with the same personality).

They are the guests not of a giant gorilla but of the King of the Island, General Zaroff, (played in slimeball style of the 1930s by Leslie Banks). It seems he has a strange fetish: he likes to hunt big game that is truly dangerous, like people. Back in those pre-Hitler times, he was not a Nazi, crypto-Nazi, or neo-Nazi, but some kind of twisted member of the aristocracy.

With its chase scenes through the jungle, the pounding music, and the production values of Merriam C. Cooper, you have a sense of been-there, done-that, from the next year version of King Kong.

It is a delight to feel the similarity, and you keep wondering where the dinosaurs are.


The Most Dangerous Game or The Gunfighter: George Zimmerman

 DATELINE: Movie Parallels in Real Life

Is George Zimmerman the example of white America’s revenge for the O.J. Simpson verdict? We think there are more apt analogies than The Naked Gun.

Whether he is or not, Mr. Zimmerman is now the latest example of a dead man walking. Unlike the other “innocent” Floridian killer, Casey Anthony, it is harder for a fat man to hide in America.

And hiding is now the only option for this self-proclaimed Hispanic man.

When a large percentage of the citizenry think he is guilty and should be hunted down and executed, you can count on the fact that gangs in American black urban areas are drawing up battle plans.

Even Zimmerman’s lawyer is calling him a “marked man.”

After plugging a 17-year old black kid, Zimmerman’s life is not worth a plug nickel.

White America did not riot when O.J. walked, nor did they put a bounty on his head. Instead, he was watched until another charge could incarcerate him.

So it will be for Zimmerman. Some justice system will find a trumped up charge to arrest him, and then in some county jail he will meet the fate of Jeffrey Dahmer or Albert DeSalvo.

We have thought for a long time that Zimmerman has the look of a stalking predator about him, but he is no dangerous game. He looks like a bowl of jelly. If we were casting the nefarious General Zaroff in a new movie, we’d give George Zimmerman a call.

In the meantime, George Zimmerman will wear body armor and carry a gun wherever he goes.

If you recall an old Western by the name of The Gunfighter, Gregory Peck played a gunslinger named Jimmy Ringo whose life was a nightmare of young punks looking to plug him in the back in some alley.

Welcome to your new life as a Western gunslinger, Mr. Zimmerman.

You may want to read about movies and their importance to society in MOVIES TO SEE–OR NOT TO SEE, or the recently published MOVIE MASHUP. Both are available on Amazon.com in paperback or ebook.