I may not remember that entire details of Planet of the Apes, the one that starred Mark Walhberg, but I do remember loving it so much that even if I don’t remember the movie’s details, I do know for a fact that I loved it.
Sorry, it’s Monday morning and I haven’t had my coffee.
The other thing I remember was that it was depressing—Mark Wahlberg is trapped in an alternate reality where apes were the rulers and humans were slaves. This world depressed me so much that whenever I pass by a slum area, the first thing that comes to my mind is Planet of the Apes. That’s how Planet appeared authentic to me despite its premise.
In Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Will Rodman (James Franco) is developing a drug and testing it among chimpanzees. The drug’s secondary effect is increased intelligence to the point that the chimpanzees:
- won’t have to be informed about driving their car through deep flood; and
- may be elected in government and finally solve our sewage and drainage problems.
That smart, you get the drift.
At some point, something goes wrong, they all break loose from captivity and Beyonce questions her own song, Who Run the World?
Now, the hard questions: What is it with apes that their increased intelligence is automatically presumed to be sinister? Why can’t they be more like Yogi Bear, who is smarter than the average bear, yet so non-threatingly cute? (Answer: Ikaw na ang may twink friend gaya ni Boo-Boo Bear.) Why do Caesar, the star chimpanzee, and James Franco have better screen chemistry than Anne Hathaway and James did when they hosted the Oscars?
I have to admit though that this stereotyping of apes, about which we haven’t heard PETA’s reaction, has resulted to a highly engaging plot especially since this version of Planet does attempt to turn the sympathy toward them.
The technical production was highly excellent—the digitally created chimpanzees looked breathtakingly and terrifyingly real. Andy Serkis, who played Gollum in Lord of the Rings, is Caesar, so expect a topnotch performance from an ape. All actors (particularly James, John Lithglow and Freida Pinto) in fact, were extremely competent and I think that’s one of the reasons why a science fiction film such as Planet may be taken seriously.
For fans of Planet, here’s how the current franchise fits into the whole series, according to Wikipedia:
It is a reboot of the Planet of the Apes series that will act as a foundation with an origin story for a new film series. Its premise is similar to the fourth film in the original series, Conquest of the Planet of the Apes (1972), but it is not a direct remake in that it does not fit into that series’ continuity.