Feature | Lights, Camera, Action! – Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (Movie Review)

By Freda Cooper 14.07.2014 3

Image for Feature | Lights, Camera, Action! – Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (Movie Review)

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (UK Rating: 12A)

It's hard to believe that the original Planet of the Apes is 46 years old yet, despite the replacement of monkey costumes with CGI, all its successors have been found wanting, some more severely than others.  In the hands of director Matt Reeves, however, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (released in UK cinemas on Thursday, 17th July) isn't simply another sequel; it manages to combine action and adventure with intelligence - a neat trick.
Image for Feature | Lights, Camera, Action! – Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (Movie Review)

Ten years have passed since the events of Rise of the Planet of the Apes. A simian flu epidemic has devastated the world, leaving only scattered pockets of human survivors. Caesar (Andy Serkis) and his group of genetically evolved apes have expanded to form a sophisticated society but, without seeing any humans for years, they assume they've died out. An encounter with members of a group from what's left of San Francisco changes all that, and threatens their way of life. The humans need new sources of power and there's a derelict dam in the apes' territory. Caesar allows them to try to get it working, but a rift between him and the hot-headed Koba (Toby Kebbell) widens dramatically, causing the conflict that Caesar has tried so hard to prevent…

The movie belongs to the apes, pure and simple.  All the focus is on them, so the audience has the opportunity to both understand and sympathise with them, as well - an interesting dilemma for a group of humans! Just as importantly, the CGI is outstanding, creating a band of apes that is never anything less than totally convincing, down to the lifelike sparkle in their eyes. Andy Serkis' Caesar has a wonderfully expressive face and he infuses every word of his limited vocabulary with authority and significance. It's a safe bet that the debate about the inclusion of CGI acting will be resurrected again come the next awards season.

This means that the humans in the film don't have that much to do, apart from try to get the dam going. If anything, Reeves has downgraded them to near-supporting characters, so Gary Oldman doesn't have that much to do as the leader of the humans and Jason Clarke's human hero is adequate, but nothing more. The apes even get the best lines of dialogue, even when they're subtitled; it's just as well, because there are times when the humans sound clumsy.

Essentially an action adventure, the film also tackles its story with some intelligence, exploring broader themes like tolerance, leadership and experiments on animals, alongside something with a strong contemporary resonance. The simian flu epidemic - blamed on the apes, so they became outcasts - was caused by human efforts to prevent dementia. The irony is that the effects of the experiments prove infinitely more devastating than the condition they were trying to cure.

Image for Feature | Lights, Camera, Action! – Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (Movie Review)

Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10
Packed with action and genuinely impressive CGI, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is a rare combination of adventure and intelligence. Ape aficionados, thoughtful film fans and those simply seeking a seriously good adventure yarn should all love its large-scale set pieces, thought-provoking moments and the fact that it's streets ahead of its forerunners. Except the original, of course.

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Can't wait! The various trailers I've seen over the period of the World Cup have got me salivating Smilie Good to see it scores high!

Adam Riley [ Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited ]
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Now this I can agree on I saw this movie this past weekend as well it was also incredible. Very honorable as well as the other and strong sens of faimly dedication and devotion. Yet again the action was great. Cesar being able to go back home to see his old owner was great and the conflict between him and his brother was dynamic. "APE NO KILL APE " I give this movie an 8.5 out of 10. because i do feel some seens were drawn out and some were pointless. But still overall a very good movie!

( Edited 28.07.2014 23:35 by curtiscdragon )

this was a rocking movie.
it was like the Dark Knight of ape fims.

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