Saturday, 23 March 2013

Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) Review

The only problem I have with this movie is that, through the whole thing, I had the score of the Simpsons' stage production of the Planet of the Apes running through my head.  But that's hardly the fault of the film makers so I can't count it against the movie.  But, let's face it.  Wouldn't that actually be a benefit to the movie?  (I actually have one other problem.  I've been to Muir Woods twice and there's no way it would be deserted at any time.  Just try finding a parking spot if you ever go.  But they had to clear it out for the cinematic effect.)

Overall, this movie is actually very good.  I was expecting much less.  But it's got a very solid and tightly wrapped story to it.  As a prequel to an entire franchise, it does have a completely expository tone to it.  The entire thing is an introduction.  I know I've complained about those types of movies in the past so I'll just say that if you're going to do a prequel, this is the way to do it.  Answer the questions about how things got to the way they were in the later movies but don't ask a bunch of new questions that will just lead to the two stories not lining up properly.  in other words, you need to stay true to any canon you created with a later movie.  Rise of the Planet of the Apes does it quite well.

The other thing that makes this good is the absolutely breathtaking special effects.  Caesar actually looks like an enlightened chimpanzee.  This is probably due to the fact that they used a human and made him a chimp rather than animating a chimp.  It brought a sense of realism that should have beaten Hugo for a visual effects Oscar.  Further to this, all of the green screening effects that they had to use were flawless.  Add in very good acting (and only one cheesy - but albeit obligatory - "damn dirty ape" line) all around and it makes for a very strong action/sci-fi movie.

See it.

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