Movies, Reviews, William Sikora

Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes – 2011′s Best Movie?

0 Comments 11 August 2011

Now, as a kid I remember watching the original Planet of the Apes films, pretty cheesy, but I still remember them as being something big back then.  Now, we’ve already been given a reboot starring Mark Wahlberg, which was a flop, so I wasn’t expecting this re-reboot to be anything amazing, boy, I was wrong.

Upon watching the early teasers and trailers, I was instantly intrigued to see more, it just looked like a good ol’ summer flick.

Without giving away spoilers and such, I will keep it simple…the movie was amazing.  Storyline was really good and kept at a decent pace…I never felt bored, the action was pretty intense.  The main ape, Ceasar, who was created by motion capture acting by many Cirque de Soleil actors, was probably the star of the show.  The emotions this digital character emoted were so real, there I was feeling for this ape that wasn’t even real.  Special effects that blur the line between fake and reality help.  Not a single real ape was used in the film, every single monkey was digitally rendered, and there were tons!  Different breeds and types, they were so beyond realistic, many people were confused and thought they were real.   The special effects were headed up by the same people who did AVATAR (WETA) – they blew me away with the work they did in the film, so many of the apes had distinct personalities and did unique things that really just made it feel natural.  The emotions for an ape reminded me of my love for Peter Jackson’s King Kong which also featured a digitally rendered beast that looked completely real.

James Franco does a decent job in his role as well as Freida Pinto and John Lithgow, but the apparent focus is on the animals.  There are moments when I got chills and just stared at the screen in awe, that doesn’t happen in many of my theater experiences.  It really helped seeing it in an AMC ETX theater, wasn’t exactly sure what that was, but I am hooked!   There are only 13 ETX theaters in the world; the special designed room features a 20% larger screen, digital projection and surround sound speakers EVERYWHERE!  There had to be twenty speakers on the ceiling and more around the room.  They definitely show off the surround sound before the movie starts by turning each section of speakers up little by little…the theater shook from the bass…literally.

Anyway back to the film…you don’t have to see the original films to enjoy this one, it’s a reboot, a refresh.  The very beginning of it all is finally unveiled to us after years of wondering what exactly happened to all the humans.  I won’t spoil that part either, but make sure you stay through the credits to see more!  There are moments in the film that pay tribute to the originals,  something you appreciate that filmmakers think of.

So, was this the movie I was expecting to love?  Nope.  Was this the movie I was expecting to call it my fav of the year?  Definitely not!  The reviews have mostly all been the same, it’s a must see!  Some scenes might be a little scary for kids, it had some very tense moments that had me feeling scared for the characters.

I really want to go get all of the original films now to watch them over again.

***** 5 Stars

William Sikora III

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