On the screen this Friday from director Matt Reeves and 20th Century Fox is what comes next when it’s the DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES.
Over ten years has passed since Caesar (Andy Serkis) and the other apes retreated from the Golden Gate Bridge into the woods. His family is growing as Cornelia (Judy Greer) gives birth to another son for Caesar along with their teenage son Blue Eyes (Nick Thurston).
The human race in that time has gone through a near wipe out from the simian flu. On the other side of the bay bridge Malcolm (Jason Clarke) and Dreyfus (Gary Oldman) have kept together a group of survivors. Now, they are running out of resources. Malcolm, along with his wife Ellie (Keri Russell) and son Alexander (Kodi Smit-McPhee) need to get past the forest where a water generated power plant can bring them hope.
Malcolm comes face to face with Caesar and shocked to hear him speak. Returning to Dreyfus, he tells them of what is in the forest. Caesar must also deal with the very angry Koba (Toby Kebbell) who wants revenge against the humans. Trying to do what is right by everyone Caesar learns that apes can be just as frightening as humans.
Caesar must and Malcolm must work together to stop an all out war between humans and apes before innocents get hurt!
FINAL WORD: Serkis as Caesar has become the King of the unseen actors. In this film Caesar has a problem with language as I see it. One moment he’s speaking fairly good English and the next he reverts back to broken English. Kind of like Kevin Costner losing his British accent when playing Robin Hood. Not earth shattering but noticeable. I see his attempt to make Caesar human but it’s not a thrill for me.
Clarke as Malcolm turns in a fair performance as the mediator between human and ape. He wants to bring life back to the city and at the same time do right by the apes. Russell as wife Ellie doesn’t have a huge role here, she may be in a lot of scenes and her role as a doctor comes in handy so there’s that. Smit-McPhee has certainly grown up and as Alex gets to read to an orangutan.
Oldman as Dreyfus is a man who wants his pre-ape life back with all the technology and fun of being human. His anger drives him as does Koba’s played by Kebbell. Seems these two should have sat down and hugged it out a little before locking and loading!
Other cast include: Terry Notary as Rocket, Karin Konoval as Maurice, Jon Eyez as Foster, Enrique Murciano as Kemp, Larramie Doc Shaw as Ash and Lee Ross as Grey.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES three tubs of popcorn out of five. I am not a huge fan of these remakes (considering we are in the third incarnation). I stand one hundred percent behind the original films. The story line was (and still is amazing) with the special effects limited as to not interfere. What many may not know is that the original PLANET OF THE APES was based on the 1963 novel La Planete des Singes by Pierre Boulle. If you have got an itch the book is an amazing read.
I should give a shout out that I noticed the name Cornelius changing to Cornelia, or the son was called Blue Eyes when the Charlton Heston’s ‘Taylor’ was called Bright Eyes. I have no doubt the film will do well and that they’ll be another because that’s how unoriginal Hollywood has become. Once again, until I’m blue in the face, saying 3D is not necessary if there is good storytelling.
Film Brat – I’m giving it three tubs of popcorn out of five. Let’s start with what I liked. I enjoyed the ‘human’ aspect of the apes. Caesar has the same ideals as humans caring for family and that includes no war. I don’t think it needs to be in 3D at all, it just didn’t need that extra element (and the glasses weigh a ton on the bridge of my nose after two hours). No one person took the show here but I’ll give props to Serkis for bringing his monkey game. The downside is the length of the film, totally unnecessary really dragging in parts that could easily have been taken out and never missed in the final cut.
In the end – who will emerge as the Earth’s prominent species!