Kong: Skull Island (12A)



Action (2017)
118mins US/Viet

Starring: Tom Hiddleston, Tian Jing, Brie Larson, John Goodman, Samuel L Jackson, John C Reilly
Director: Jordan Vogt-Roberts
Writer(s): Dan Gilroy, Max Borenstein, Derek Connolly
Listings: London | Rest of UK and Ireland

A secretive government organisation called Monarch has stumbled upon a self-contained island ecosystem ruled by a giant ape. The company needs to send an expedition to the island so Monarch executive William Randa hires a crack team including helicopter squadron leader Preston Packard, tracker James Conrad, anti-war photojournalist Mason Weaver, geologist Houston Brooks and biologist San Lin.

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LondonNet Film Review
Kong: Skull Island (12A)

Mankind tumbles several links down the food chain in Kong: Skull Island, a rollicking 1970s-set action adventure directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts, which revives one of cinema's iconic monsters. Unfolding predominately on a Pacific island where "God did not finish creation", the picture unleashes a menagerie of hulking beasts as well as the titular ape and contrives a series of digitally rendered showdowns between these leviathans of a lost world. Kong's briskly edited ding-dongs ping-pong between the spectacular and the dizzying, choreographed to the relentless beat of Henry Jackman's bombastic orchestral score...

Kong: Skull Island. Copyright: Warner Bros. Pictures. Caption: Thomas Mann, Jogn Goodman, John C Reilly, Brie Larson and Tom Hiddleston star in Kong: Skull Island, directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts. All Rights Reserved.There are fleeting moments of humour to punctuate the carnage, like when a shadowy US official arrives by car in his nation's political capital, which is swarming with Vietnam protesters, and deadpans: "Mark my words, there will never be a more screwed-up time in Washington." Very droll. Director Vogt-Roberts and his three screenwriters are apparently fans of Jurassic Park and its sequels. Key sequences pay homage to Steven Spielberg's dino-blockbuster, and Samuel L Jackson, who played the park's chief engineer, recycles one of his iconic lines of dialogue - "Hold onto your butts!" - in the guise of a squadron leader here shortly before the gargantuan primate starts swatting helicopters.

Bill Randa (John Goodman) spearheads a secretive government organisation called Monarch, which specialises "in the hunt for massive unidentified terrestrial organisms". He leads an exploratory geological survey to a Pacific island, which is encircled by an electrical storm, and sequesters Preston Packard (Jackson) from Da Nang airbase to fly the mission. Packard corrals his best pilots and loads aircraft with sonic bombs to map the island's topography. Passengers include tracker James Conrad (Tom Hiddleston), anti-war photojournalist Mason Weaver (Brie Larson), geologist Houston Brooks (Corey Hawkins) and biologist San Lin (Tian Jing). The sonic weapons rouse a giant ape and the best-laid plans of men of science are smashed to smithereens. Crash-landed on the island, the survivors encounter a crazed US airman called Hank Marlow (John C Reilly), who has been living wild for 28 years and 11 months since his aircraft was downed during the Second World War. "Kong is king around here," confirms Marlow and he joins the race against time to reach the extraction point.

Kong: Skull Island angrily flexes its muscles, but punches below its weight. In moments of calm, character development is given disappointingly short shrift and cast including Oscar winner Larson are squandered in bland roles. Hiddleston is unconvincing as a former British soldier, hired to lead the otherworldly expedition, and his swaggering hunk's centrepiece action sequence involving a samurai sword and gas mask is superfluous and almost laughable in its execution. A brief coda, nestled in the end credits, teases the head-on collision of monster franchises in next year's Godzilla: King Of The Monsters and the full-blown rumble Godzilla Vs Kong in summer 2020.

- Jo Planter

Kong: Skull Island. Copyright: Warner Bros. Pictures. Caption: Thomas Mann, Jogn Goodman, John C Reilly, Brie Larson and Tom Hiddleston star in Kong: Skull Island, directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts. All Rights Reserved.


London Cinemas



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Rest of UK and Irish Cinemas

Listed in alphabetical order by city/place name followed by cinema name.

From Friday 14th April
To Thursday 20th April

- Aberdeen, Cineworld Aberdeen - Queens Link
- Aberdeen, Cineworld Aberdeen - Union Square
- Accrington, Vue Accrington
- Alnwick, Alnwick Playhouse
- Andover, Odeon Andover
- Antrim, Antrim Omniplex
- Arklow, Arklow Omniplex
- Ashbourne, Showtime Cinemas Ashbourne
- Ashford, Cineworld Ashford
- Ashton-under-Lyne, Cineworld Ashton-under-Lyne
- Ballina, IMC Ballina
- Ballymena, IMC Ballymena
- Banbridge, Banbridge Omniplex
- Bangor, Bangor Omniplex
- Basildon, Cineworld Basildon
- Basingstoke, Odeon Basingstoke
- Basingstoke, Vue Basingstoke Festival Place
- Batley, Showcase Leeds
- Belfast, Dundonald Omniplex
- Belfast, Kennedy Centre Belfast Omniplex
- Belfast, Movie House Cityside (Yorkgate)
- Berwick-upon-Tweed, The Maltings Theatre And Cinema
- Beverley, Parkway Cinema
- Bicester, Vue Bicester
- Birmingham, Odeon Birmingham Broadway Plaza
- Birmingham, Vue Birmingham
- Bishop's Stortford, Empire Bishop's Stortford
- Blackpool, Odeon Blackpool
- Blackpool, The Reel Picture
- Boldon Colliery, Cineworld Boldon Tyne And Wear
- Bolton, Cineworld Bolton
- Bolton, The Light Cinema, Bolton
- Bolton, Vue Bolton
- Bootle, Odeon Liverpool Switch Island
- Bournemouth, Odeon Bournemouth BH2
- Bracknell, Odeon Bracknell
- Bradford, Cineworld Bradford
- Bradford, Odeon Leeds-Bradford
- Bridgend, Odeon Bridgend
- Bristol, Cineworld Bristol
- Bristol, Showcase Bristol Avon Meads
- Bristol, Showcase Bristol Cinema De Lux
- Bristol, Vue Bristol Cribbs Causeway
- Bristol, Vue Bristol Longwell Green
- Burnley, Reel Cinema Burnley
- Burton-on-Trent, Cineworld Burton Upon Trent
- Bury, Vue Bury The Rock
- Bury St Edmunds, Cineworld Bury St Edmunds
- Cambridge, The Light Cinema, Cambridge
- Cardiff, Cineworld Cardiff
- Cardiff, Odeon Cardiff
- Carlisle, Vue Carlisle
- Carlow, IMC Carlow
- Castleford, Cineworld Castleford
- Catterick Garrison, Empire Catterick Garrison
- Cheltenham, Cineworld Cheltenham
- Chester, Cineworld Broughton
- Chichester, Cineworld Chichester
- Cleethorpes, Parkway Cinema
- Clydebank, Empire Clydebank
- Coleraine, Movie House Coleraine
- Cork, Cork Omniplex
- Craigavon, Craigavon Omniplex
- Cramlington, Vue Cramlington
- Crawley, Cineworld Crawley
- Darlington, Vue Darlington
- Derby, Odeon Derby
- Dereham, Hollywood Cinema
- Doncaster, Vue Doncaster
- Drogheda, The Arc Cinema
- Dublin, IMC Santry
- Dublin, IMC Tallaght
- Dublin, Movies @ Dundrum
- Dublin, Movies @ Swords
- Dublin, Odeon Blanchardstown
- Dublin, Odeon Charlestown
- Dublin, Odeon Coolock
- Dublin, Vue Dublin
- Dudley, Odeon Dudley Merry Hill
- Dudley, Showcase Dudley
- Dundalk, Dundalk Omniplex
- Dundee, Odeon Dundee
- Dunfermline, Odeon Dunfermline
- East Didsbury, Cineworld Didsbury
- Edinburgh, Cineworld Edinburgh
- Edinburgh, Odeon Edinburgh Fort Kinnaird
- Edinburgh, Vue Edinburgh Ocean Terminal
- Edinburgh, Vue Edinburgh Omni Centre
- Ellesmere Port, Vue Cheshire Oaks
- Enniskillen, IMC Enniskillen
- Exeter, Vue Exeter
- Falmouth, Phoenix Cinema
- Farnborough, Vue Farnborough
- Galashiels, Pavilion
- Galway, IMC Galway
- Gateshead, Odeon Metrocentre
- Gateshead, Vue Gateshead
- Glasgow, Cineworld Glasgow - Silverburn
- Glasgow, Odeon Glasgow Springfield Quay
- Glasgow, Showcase Glasgow
- Grays, Vue Thurrock
- Great Yarmouth, Hollywood Cinema
- Greenhithe, Showcase Bluewater
- Hamilton, Vue Hamilton
- Harlow, Cineworld Harlow
- Hemel Hempstead, Cineworld Hemel Hempstead
- High Wycombe, Cineworld High Wycombe
- High Wycombe, Empire High Wycombe
- Hull, Cineworld Hull
- Huntingdon, Cineworld Huntingdon
- Inverness, Vue Inverness
- Ipswich, Empire Ipswich
- Killyconigan, Monaghan Omniplex
- Larne, Larne Harbour Omniplex
- Leamington Spa, Vue Leamington Spa (Apollo)
- Leeds, Vue Leeds Kirkstall Road
- Leeds, Vue Leeds The Light
- Leicester, Showcase Leicester Cinema De Lux
- Limerick, Limerick Omniplex
- Limerick, Odeon Limerick
- Lisburn, Lisburn Omniplex
- Liverpool, Odeon Liverpool ONE
- Liverpool, Showcase Liverpool
- Llandudno, Cineworld Llandudno
- Londonderry, Brunswick Moviebowl
- Londonderry, Derry Omniplex
- Loughborough, Cineworld Loughborough
- Loughborough, Odeon Loughborough
- Luton, Cineworld Luton
- Manchester, AMC Great Northern
- Manchester, Odeon Manchester
- Manchester, Odeon Trafford Centre
- Manchester, Showcase Manchester
- Merthyr Tydfil, Vue Merthyr Tydfil
- Middlesbrough, Cineworld Middlesbrough
- Milton Keynes, Cineworld Milton Keynes
- Milton Keynes, Odeon Milton Keynes Stadium
- Mullingar, IMC Mullingar
- Newbridge, Odeon Newbridge
- Newcastle-under-Lyme, Vue Newcastle-under-Lyme
- Newcastle upon Tyne, Empire Newcastle Upon Tyne
- Newport, Cineworld Newport Spytty Road
- Newry, Newry Omniplex
- Newtownards, Movieland Multi Screen/Ards Shopping Centre
- Northampton, Vue Northampton
- Norwich, Hollywood Cinema
- Norwich, Odeon Norwich
- Nottingham, Showcase Nottingham Cinema De Lux
- Orpington, Odeon Orpington
- Paignton, Vue Torbay (Apollo)
- Paisley, Showcase Paisley
- Peterborough, Showcase Peterborough
- Plymouth, Vue Plymouth
- Poole, Cineworld Poole
- Portsmouth, Vue Portsmouth
- Preston, Odeon Preston
- Pwllheli, Neuadd Dwyfor
- Reading, Showcase Reading Cinema De Lux
- Reading, Vue Reading
- Redruth, Regal Film Centre
- Renfrew, Odeon Braehead
- Rochester, Cineworld Rochester
- Rugby, Cineworld Rugby
- Runcorn, Cineworld Runcorn
- Salisbury, Odeon Salisbury
- Scunthorpe, Vue Scunthorpe
- Seaham, Cineworld Dalton Park
- Sheffield, Cineworld Sheffield
- Sheffield, Vue Sheffield
- Shrewsbury, Cineworld Shrewsbury
- Sligo, Sligo Omniplex
- Southampton, Odeon Southampton
- Stevenage, Cineworld Stevenage
- Stillorgan, Odeon Stillorgan
- Stirling, Vue Stirling
- Stockton-on-Tees, Showcase Teesside
- Stoke-on-Trent, Cineworld Stoke-on-Trent
- Stoke-on-Trent, Odeon Stoke
- Stroud, Vue Stroud (Apollo)
- Sunderland, Empire Sunderland
- Swansea, Vue Swansea
- Swindon, Empire Swindon Greenbridge
- Taunton, Odeon Taunton
- Telford, Cineworld Telford
- Telford, Odeon Telford
- Tewkesbury, The Roses Theatre
- Thanet, Vue Westwood Cross
- Thornton-Cleveleys, Vue Cleveleys
- Thurles, IMC Thurles
- Trowbridge, Odeon Trowbridge
- Tullamore, IMC Tullamore
- Wallasey, The Light Cinema, New Brighton
- Wallingford, Corn Exchange
- Walsall, Showcase Walsall
- Walsall, The Light Cinema, Walsall
- Warrington, Odeon Warrington
- Waterford, Odeon Waterford
- Waterford, Waterford Omniplex
- Watford, Vue Watford
- Wexford, Wexford Omniplex
- Weymouth, Cineworld Weymouth
- Wigan, Empire Wigan
- Wolverhampton, Cineworld Wolverhampton
- Worcester, Vue Worcester
- York, Vue York
From Friday 21st April
To Thursday 27th April

- Aberdeen, Cineworld Aberdeen - Union Square
- Accrington, Vue Accrington
- Antrim, Antrim Omniplex
- Arklow, Arklow Omniplex
- Ashford, Cineworld Ashford
- Ashton-under-Lyne, Cineworld Ashton-under-Lyne
- Banbridge, Banbridge Omniplex
- Bangor, Bangor Omniplex
- Basildon, Cineworld Basildon
- Basingstoke, Vue Basingstoke Festival Place
- Belfast, Dundonald Omniplex
- Belfast, Movie House Cityside (Yorkgate)
- Birmingham, Empire Birmingham Great Park
- Birmingham, Odeon Birmingham Broadway Plaza
- Birmingham, Vue Birmingham
- Blackpool, Odeon Blackpool
- Blackpool, The Reel Picture
- Bolton, Cineworld Bolton
- Bootle, Odeon Liverpool Switch Island
- Bournemouth, Odeon Bournemouth BH2
- Bradford, Cineworld Bradford
- Bradford, Odeon Leeds-Bradford
- Bridgend, Odeon Bridgend
- Bristol, Cineworld Bristol
- Bristol, Showcase Bristol Avon Meads
- Bristol, Vue Bristol Longwell Green
- Cardiff, Cineworld Cardiff
- Cardiff, Odeon Cardiff
- Cardiff, Vue Cardiff
- Castleford, Cineworld Castleford
- Catterick Garrison, Empire Catterick Garrison
- Cleethorpes, Parkway Cinema
- Clydebank, Empire Clydebank
- Coleraine, Movie House Coleraine
- Cork, Cork Omniplex
- Cramlington, Vue Cramlington
- Darlington, Vue Darlington
- Derby, Odeon Derby
- Dereham, Hollywood Cinema
- Drogheda, The Arc Cinema
- Dublin, Movies @ Dundrum
- Dublin, Movies @ Swords
- Dublin, Odeon Blanchardstown
- Dublin, Odeon Charlestown
- Dublin, Odeon Coolock
- Dublin, Vue Dublin
- Dundee, Odeon Dundee
- Dunfermline, Odeon Dunfermline
- Edinburgh, Vue Edinburgh Ocean Terminal
- Edinburgh, Vue Edinburgh Omni Centre
- Ellesmere Port, Vue Cheshire Oaks
- Fishguard, Theatr Gwaun
- Galashiels, Pavilion
- Glasgow, Showcase Glasgow
- Grays, Vue Thurrock
- Great Yarmouth, Hollywood Cinema
- Hamilton, Vue Hamilton
- Hemel Hempstead, Cineworld Hemel Hempstead
- High Wycombe, Cineworld High Wycombe
- Inverness, Vue Inverness
- Larne, Larne Harbour Omniplex
- Letterkenny, Century Cinema
- Limerick, Limerick Omniplex
- Limerick, Odeon Limerick
- Lisburn, Lisburn Omniplex
- Liverpool, Odeon Liverpool ONE
- Londonderry, Brunswick Moviebowl
- Londonderry, Derry Omniplex
- Manchester, Odeon Manchester
- Manchester, Odeon Trafford Centre
- Manchester, Showcase Manchester
- Melton Mowbray, Regal Cinema
- Milton Keynes, Cineworld Milton Keynes
- Newcastle-under-Lyme, Vue Newcastle-under-Lyme
- Newcastle upon Tyne, Empire Newcastle Upon Tyne
- Newry, Newry Omniplex
- Northampton, Vue Northampton
- Norwich, Hollywood Cinema
- Norwich, Odeon Norwich
- Paignton, Vue Torbay (Apollo)
- Paisley, Showcase Paisley
- Plymouth, Vue Plymouth
- Poole, Cineworld Poole
- Portsmouth, Vue Portsmouth
- Preston, Odeon Preston
- Reading, Showcase Reading Cinema De Lux
- Renfrew, Odeon Braehead
- Rochester, Cineworld Rochester
- Sheffield, Cineworld Sheffield
- Sheffield, Vue Sheffield
- Sligo, Sligo Omniplex
- Southampton, Odeon Southampton
- Stevenage, Cineworld Stevenage
- Stillorgan, Odeon Stillorgan
- Stockton-on-Tees, Showcase Teesside
- Stoke-on-Trent, Cineworld Stoke-on-Trent
- Stornoway, An Lanntair Arts Centre
- Swansea, Vue Swansea
- Telford, Odeon Telford
- Walsall, The Light Cinema, Walsall
- Warrington, Odeon Warrington
- Waterford, Odeon Waterford
- Waterford, Waterford Omniplex
- Wexford, Wexford Omniplex
- Weymouth, Cineworld Weymouth
- Wigan, Empire Wigan


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