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Nightmare Fuel / King Kong (2005)

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The Movie:

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/lumpy_death.jpg
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Kong is the least scary thing living on Skull Island. Here's why.


  • The way the crew members die... many of them Eaten Alive. Special mention goes to the Cruel and Unusual Death of the cook, devoured one limb at a time by the Carnictis.
    • That's currently pictured on this page, by the way. Poor Lumpy...his screams...
  • The entire insect pit sequence really, especially if one suffers from entomophobia.
    • One of the men tries to climb up the canyon wall... and is suddenly grabbed by a giant pincer bursting from said-wall and gets dragged screaming into the hole.
    • It has a special ability to frighten New Zealand viewers, knowing that some of the insects are actually GIANT WETAS, bloody ugly insects native to their fair land. And while they normally live in forests, they can turn up anywhere, and they're big enough as it is, so the concept of wetas the size of a dog would freak any NZer out...
      • Their NAME (Wetapunga) means 'God of Ugly Things' in Maori. Worse, the Carnictis are real, too... they're giant-sized versions of bloodworms, a carnivorous worm with protruding... er... lips.
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  • The Terapusmordax that replace the Pteranodon as the giant flying monsters in this version of the film. It's the "Bat Out of Hell", "Kidnapping Bird of Prey" and "Swarm of Rats" tropes all wrapped up into one horrifying nightmare.
  • The deleted swamp scene (featuring the Piranhadon) wasn't much better. Two of the crew are Impaled with Extreme Prejudice on its teeth, but one is swallowed whole, as he futilely reaches from between the teeth. In a freakin' Orbital Shot, so we can see he's doomed from all sides, no less. It very nearly does the same to Jack Driscoll.
    • It gets worse—if you listen closely, you can hear the poor sucker's muffled screams as the monster descends back into the swamp.
    • And then at the end of the sequence, one last man gets out of the water, to safety. Then the Piranhadon bursts out of the water, grabs him, and pulls him under. Safety was snatched from this poor man's grasp literally seconds before he reached it.
  • Whilst trying escape from Kong, Ann is chased into a hollow log by a pair of Foetodon, which are large crocodile-like creatures. Inside the log however are a pair of giant centipedes, which she has to lie still and allow to crawl all over her because she can't risk attracting the reptile's attention. Just watching the scene can make one's skin crawl, especially when one of them sticks its antennae in her mouth.
  • Let's just say that a lot of the creatures on Skull Island will guest-star in your nightmares.
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    • The coffee-table book, The World of Kong: A Natural History of Skull Island has some even creepier examples. Yes, even creepier than the giant worms.
  • Not just the creatures, but the natives of Skull Island. When you hear the term "savages" used to refer to aboriginal cultures, it's usually an insulting description of someone with a different culture. This, however, is the culture the word was made for. Emaciated, wearing scant clothing made of human hair and teeth and small animal bones, and driven to feral insanity by living on an island crawling with monsters...
    • They're pretty creepy in the Natural History of Skull Island coffee-table book, too. Not least, because it's apparent that they've actually been fully integrated into the local food chain, and occupy the same niche as, say, small omnivorous rodents would in a normal habitat.
  • Everything about Kong's situation the moment Denham captures him, being drugged, kidnapped and put on stage in chains against his will... It's a great overlap of this and Tear Jerker.
  • The scene where Denham and the rest of the crew first venture onto the island and discover the native village. The creepy architecture, skeletons and overlaid audio of screams and chanting make it highly unsettling.
    • Fright fact: according to The World of Kong, the natives' "village" is actually an ancient burial site from when Skull Island had a thriving civilization on it. As the island started falling apart, the dinosaurs invaded the city and the humans were forced out. Their graveyard is the only place on the entire island where they have some degree of safety, and even that means very little in a place like Skull Island.
  • Skull Island as a whole is pretty terrifying. A mysterious island absent from any maps, perpetually surrounded by fog, covered in the eerie ruins of an unknown civilization and inhabited by countless monstrosities and feral natives.
    • Shots of the ship slipping through all-too-narrow gaps in the rock outcroppings, with rough seas tossing it dangerously close to razor-edged rock faces and ghastly ape-face carvings, have their own elements of dread.
  • The sacrifice scene is terrifying. In the 1933 film, the interrupted version amongst the natives has its own sad dignity. Here, we get nightmarish wailing, gibbering and ululations, all interspersed with one hideous old crone gleefully chanting "Kong!" in Ann's face as the rest of the natives twitch, shudder and jerk like they are dying.
    • Just to add to the creep factor, the Natural History tie-in book establishes that that "hideous old crone" isn't just a ritual chanter: she's the absolute ruler of the settlement. Which, given how batshit insane she appears to be, explains a lot about the state of the village and its inhabitants.
  • In the extended cut of the chase through New York, there's more time to realize that the soldiers are shelling Kong and firing machine-guns at him in the middle of Manhattan, one of the most densely-populated places in the country at the time. And they're too focused on killing the ape to notice that they're sending bullets into occupied apartments when they miss, unlike in modern-setting films which at least tend to hint that civilians are being evacuated.
  • If you happen to have a fear of heights, the climactic sequence is really not going to sit well with you. If you don't have a fear of heights, it might give you one.

The Video Game:

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/king_kong_video_game_nightmare_fuel.jpg
  • From the licensed game, we have some wonderful moments where the player (through the first-person perspective of Jack Driscoll) must prevent a pursuing V. Rex from devouring your comrades. You can do this by shooting a Terapusmordax overhead, buying them a few precious extra seconds while it grabs the convenient appetizer before resuming its pursuit. But the more effective way is to throw a spear or empty a Thompson drum mag into its hide. The Rex will pause and turn to look straight at you. Then the color drains from the screen leaving it black & white, the controls freeze (in fear), the camera focuses on the beast while the periphery blurs, and the whole image shakes when it ROARS at you. It was a hungry apex predator who saw you as easy prey, but fifty rounds of man-stopping .45 ACP from one of the most devastating submachine guns ever made...just pissed it off. Run. Like. Hell.
    • Their younger counterparts, while killable when playing as Jack, are awfully strong and can still destroy the stone structures on which you can hide, leaving you and your team completely at their mercy.
  • The giant centipedes and milipedes were only in the movie to creep Ann (and the viewers) out. Here, they're now bigger and dangerous, being able to launch themselves at you, constrict their prey much like a boa or a python and can even hide in holes from which they can jump to give you a nasty Jump Scare. While they don't have lots of health, their ferociousness and the fact they usually attack in large groups has made them the terror of many players.
  • Some levels include pretty narrow corners and caverns with poor illumination, which may be very uncomfortable for those who suffer claustrophobia. Not helped by the fact that giant centipedes usually love to hide there.

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