Of all the Super Bowl commercials to make me cry, I never suspected that watching an M&M get kidnapped would push me over the edge. And yet, when I saw Rade Serbedzija threatening to chop up the yellow M&M, I was simultaneously paralyzed with fear and overcome with sadness. But why?
Surprisingly, this wasn’t about my irrational love of chocolate. It was about Serbedzija. I knew his face, and it only took me seconds to place him. He was the evil poacher from Mighty Joe Young! Just like that, my tears made sense.
Mighty Joe Young tells the story of Jill, who, as a young child, witnesses poachers killing her mother (along with a mother gorilla). She then promises her mom that she will take care of the baby gorilla who was also orphaned in the hunt. Flash-forward 12 years, and Joe — the gorilla — has outgrown his fellow gorillas due to a genetic abnormality. Thanks to his size, he’s not accepted by other gorillas and spends most of his time hanging out with Jill (played by Charlize Theron). At this point, if you’re thinking that this sounds a lot like King Kong, you’re not far off. However, instead of climbing the Empire State Building, Joe climbs a Ferris wheel. But I’ll get to that.
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