After seeing the first installment in the prequel series to the classic Planet of the Ape movies, I had faith that Hollywood could still tell a meaningful story while rebooting its classic blockbusters. Rise of the Planet of the Apes made “creature” features cool again with its smart script and underlying metaphorical messages. This paired with the genius of James Franco (Spring Breakers) and Andy Serkis (The Hobbit) and my expectations for its predecessor were through the rough. Throw in a strong up and coming director, Matt Reeves (Cloverfield) and I was sold.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was one of the smartest and most unique sequels I have ever seen. First, it threw aside the star power of Franco and stayed true to the goodbye Caesar (Serkis) says to him at the end of Rise, making Caesar the center of Dawn. This means that besides Ryan Gosling’s character in Drive, our protagonist creates an emotional connection with the audience without even speaking for a majority of the movie. Second, the script was intelligently written in a way that has been referred to by the writers as “science-fact” instead of science fiction. This means that even though the chances of apes taking over the earth is very slim (at this point of existence), the evolution of the trilogy is thought out in a way that makes logical sense.
Add in epic action sequences with parallels between how humans treat each other like animals and this is the best sci-fi blockbuster of the year. Now I just hope my Full Metal Jacket theory comes true in the third part of the series.
By: Jonny Havey | Producer