Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011): Rupert Wyatt’s Thrilling Origin Story

Technically, “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” the eagerly awaited sci-fi from Fox, is the most thrilling and entertaining spectacle adventure this summer.

Review of Tim Burton’s 2001 film

This origin story, intelligently scripted by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, and vibrantly directed by Rupert Wyatt, complements nicely the original 1968 picture, “Planet of the Apes,“ which has become a cult movie, and is far superior to the four sequels of the series, as well as to Tim Burton’s 2001 update (or remake).

Call it technological determinism, but “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” could not have been made even three of four years ago. The turning point is James Cameron’s “Avatar” (also made by Fox), which invented a new technology (actually a new way of storytelling and filmmaking) and was then advanced and pushed forward. The movie contains some startling visual and sound effects seldom seen in Hollywood pictures.

“Rise of the Planet” is considered to be the first live-action feature in history to tell the story from the perspective of a creature, Caesar, and the fact that he is played/embodied by the great Andy Serkis makes the experience all the more rewarding.   Indeed, the film’s sophisticated technology is most evident in the extraordinary achievement of Andy Serkis, by now the world’s foremost performance capture actor, having done “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy as well as the 2005 remake of “King Kong” (both helmed by Peter Jackson). Serkis infuses Caesar, who becomes the lead character, with body, heart, and soul, not to mention nuance, wisdom and wit (More about Serkis later).

“Rise of the Planet of the Apes” is an  origin story, set in present day San Francisco, aiming to relate a cautionary tale about the limitations of scientific endeavor. The premise of the film is linked directly to central notions in former “Planet” pictures.  Humans’ bold experiments with genetic engineering lead to the development of unprecedented intelligence in apes and the onset of a war for domination.

Like the first film, “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” pits humans against nature, but also humans against themselves. (Remember Charlton Heston’s cursing mankind at the very last scene on the beach, after discovering  the ruins of the Statue of Liberty: “You finally really did it. You maniacs! You blew it up! God damn you! God damn you all to hell!”).

It’s a pleasure to report that, unlike most event flicks (largely about comic strip heroes), “Rise of the Planet” is not greedy in terms of running time and it doesn’t overstay its welcome.  Structurally, the narrative is divided into three parts, which differ in contents and tone. The first is mostly set in the research lab, the second in a confined space, sort of a prison, and the third take place largely outdoors, depicting a major escape and a rebellion.

The likeable James Franco (Oscar nominee for “127 Hours” and controversial Oscar show host) is well cast as Will Rodman, an ambitious scientist devoted to his research and career. Most of what we need to know about Will’s past, background, motivation, and work is conveyed in the first reel, which is both plot-oriented and character-driven.  It’s too bad that as the picture goes along, less and less attention is paid to characterization and substance and more to sheer spectacle, chase scenes and special effects, though they are all executed in a bravura style.

In the first hour, which includes many humanist touches and emotionally touching moments, Will dominates the proceedings. We witness how prior to Gen-Sys’s beginning of human trials of a promising new drug, ALZ-112, Will’s simian subjects suddenly display bizarrely aggressive, unpredictably dangerous behavior.  Driven by profit, the corrupt management deems the research a failure and orders Will to shut down his program after five years of hard work.

Franco portrays well a man who’s initially cold, isolated and career-driven. Things begin to change when he moves into his father’s place, which was his childhood home, to take care of the elderly man (very well played by character actor John Lithgow), who is suffering from dementia and is thus given to erratic behavior, like suddenly and ferociously playing the piano, or getting into his car while he is not supposed to drive. Being a caregiver is a role Will has never performed before, and initially he is not good at it.

Amidst the confusion of the study’s termination, Will finds himself charged with an overlooked newborn chimp, the newly orphaned offspring of his most promising test subject, Caesar. Will secretly raises young Caesar as his own, at home, while caring for his own father.

Will takes Caesar to Caroline, a primatologist who becomes his vet, and soon (too soon?) Will’s love interest. Though nicely played by the beautiful Freida Pinto (of “Slumdog Millionaire”), Carloine is the least developed character, sort of an obligatory inclusion of a femme in an otherwise male-dominated milieu so that the movie could also be marked as a romantic adventure and appeal to female viewers.

A major role reversal occurs in this process of what sociologists call resocialization. Will the son gradually becomes the father not only of his biological father Charles, but also the father to his baby chimp, who is clearly much more than a pet to him. From that point on, defying realism, the narrative goes out of its way to humanize Will, turning him from a strictly professional scientist to a sensitive human being to the point where he cares about Caesar more than about the success of the drug or his work.

The second chapter is largely set within the confines of the San Bruno Primate Sanctuary, where Will is forced to take Caesar after the latter creates havoc. The Sanctuary, sort of a dumping ground for unwanted and abandoned apes, run with a firm hand by Landon (Brian Cox) and his son Dodge (Tom Felton), a nasty, ruthless guard who mistreats and abuses the apes.

For a whole reel, we get a fascinating portrait of group dynamics. Though he is not the strongest ape in the facility, Caesar realizes that in order to survive he must use his extraordinary intelligence. A new coalition is formed and a new social order is established, with the newly dominant Caesar presiding over the fearsome male ape Rocket, a brooding angry gorilla named Buck, and, most touching of all, a psychologically damaged orangutan named Maurice, who use to perform in a circus. The tension between the apes and the (in) human guards builds up to a pivotal moment, in which Caesar stands up and retaliates against the cruel handlers. (The audience with which I saw the picture burst up with a huge spontaneous applause at this electrifying moment).

Unfortunately, as exciting as it is to watch, the last reel is totally devoted to the apes’ escape and the chaos caused by their revolution in taking over the entire city of San Francisco and its most iconic sites. This may not be surprising, considering that the director, a gifted craftsman, has previously made one feature, “The Escapist,” a British prison escape thriller. (To be fair, Wyatt is also a producer of a significant documentary, “Dark Days,” that we L.A. Film Critics members honored with the top award for best non-fiction).

But despite these flaws, there is a lot to praise and recommend. The first reel is extremely satisfying in detailing Will, his relationships, and his work. A scientist working within the large pharmaceutical corporation Gen-Sys, he conducts extensive (and expensive) genetic research to develop a benign virus that will restore damaged human brain tissue. It turns out that he is driven by both personal and professional factors.

As his name suggests, Will is committed to finding a cure for Alzheimer’s, a debilitating disease that affects his father, Charles (John Lithgow). In the beginning the two men are distanced from each other, and we are led to believe that Will’s relentless focus, the fact that he is all consumed by his scientific work, has precluded any meaningful relationships, with his father and with women. (Not to worry, during the course of the tale, which has its share of humanistic values and moralistic lessons, Will will rectify his conduct, pay for his sins, and sort of redeem himself).

Indeed, when the caretaker complains that Charles is too difficult and belongs to a home, Will moves back home to take care of his father. On one level, Rise of the Plant” is very much a father-son emotional melodrama, showing how Will’s research and his father’s illness has brought him closer to his father that he had ever been.

Remarkably, the filmmakers have used visual effects and performance capture work on practical locations outside the controlled environment of the studio and its enclosed stages. This has allowed the capture work to be integrated with the live action performance, eliminating the usual barriers that usually exist between visual effects and live action.

Unlike all the other “Planet” movies, this version is also noteworthy for its presentation of emotionally-engaging photo-realistic apes, several of which are given individualized look and personality.

The film’s locales are instantly recognizable and relatable, and several scenes set in the Red Woods and Golden Gate Bridge evoke strong (and for me pleasant) memories of other great films shot there.

Much like its predecessor, the new film uses the sci-fi genre to explore bigger worlds and bigger ideas. Problem is, most of the ideas are too familiar. This is especially the case of the two main villains of the story.

James Franco’s Will may be the tale’s nominal lead, but, ultimately, the real, heroic star of the film is Caesar. An ape with human-like qualities, Caesar can strategize, organize and eventually lead a whole revolution. Will all but disappears from the film’s last 40 minutes of so of the yarn, though he reappears at the very end.

Like the alien in Spielberg’s “E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial” provides real emotional bond with the audience, and a strong point of identification.

Most of the events unfold through the eyes of Caesar, an ultra-intelligent chimpanzee, the film’s only character who goes through a radical transformation. At a young age, Caesar sees Will and the other humans in a positive way, capable of and making wonderful things, like art, science, and reason. But then he begins to see the dark side of humanity, physical abuse, oppression, bigotry, and ostracizing outsider and outcasts.

The movie may be disingenuous, or perhaps pushing too hard its central morals, corporate greed and human arrogance in thinking that science can cheat, challenge, and circumvent the laws of nature (a too vague, sort of mythical concept in the story), without paying attention to issues of responsibility and consequences.

None of the sequels, “Beneath the Planet of the Apes,” “Escape from the Planet of the Apes,” “Conquest of the Planet of the Apes,” and “Battle for the Planet of the Apes,” lived up to the 1968 original movie.

Over the years the “Apes” series spiraled into self-parody. In 2001, Tim Burton directed another version of “Planet of the Apes,” which was commercially successful but artistically disappointing.

Spoiler Alert

The very last scene between Will and Caesar, an emotionally wrenching and fateful reunion after the epic escape, with it strong emphasis on the meaning of home, also recalls Spielberg’s “E.T.”

xosotin chelseathông tin chuyển nhượngcâu lạc bộ bóng đá arsenalbóng đá atalantabundesligacầu thủ haalandUEFAevertonxosokeonhacaiketquabongdalichthidau7m.newskqbdtysokeobongdabongdalufutebol ao vivofutemaxmulticanaisonbethttps://bsport.fithttps://onbet88.ooohttps://i9bet.bizhttps://hi88.ooohttps://okvip.athttps://f8bet.athttps://fb88.cashhttps://vn88.cashhttps://shbet.atbóng đá world cupbóng đá inter milantin juventusbenzemala ligaclb leicester cityMUman citymessi lionelsalahnapolineymarpsgronaldoserie atottenhamvalenciaAS ROMALeverkusenac milanmbappenapolinewcastleaston villaliverpoolfa cupreal madridpremier leagueAjaxbao bong da247EPLbarcelonabournemouthaff cupasean footballbên lề sân cỏbáo bóng đá mớibóng đá cúp thế giớitin bóng đá ViệtUEFAbáo bóng đá việt namHuyền thoại bóng đágiải ngoại hạng anhSeagametap chi bong da the gioitin bong da lutrận đấu hôm nayviệt nam bóng đátin nong bong daBóng đá nữthể thao 7m24h bóng đábóng đá hôm naythe thao ngoai hang anhtin nhanh bóng đáphòng thay đồ bóng đábóng đá phủikèo nhà cái onbetbóng đá lu 2thông tin phòng thay đồthe thao vuaapp đánh lô đềdudoanxosoxổ số giải đặc biệthôm nay xổ sốkèo đẹp hôm nayketquaxosokq xskqxsmnsoi cầu ba miềnsoi cau thong kesxkt hôm naythế giới xổ sốxổ số 24hxo.soxoso3mienxo so ba mienxoso dac bietxosodientoanxổ số dự đoánvé số chiều xổxoso ket quaxosokienthietxoso kq hôm nayxoso ktxổ số megaxổ số mới nhất hôm nayxoso truc tiepxoso ViệtSX3MIENxs dự đoánxs mien bac hom nayxs miên namxsmientrungxsmn thu 7con số may mắn hôm nayKQXS 3 miền Bắc Trung Nam Nhanhdự đoán xổ số 3 miềndò vé sốdu doan xo so hom nayket qua xo xoket qua xo so.vntrúng thưởng xo sokq xoso trực tiếpket qua xskqxs 247số miền nams0x0 mienbacxosobamien hôm naysố đẹp hôm naysố đẹp trực tuyếnnuôi số đẹpxo so hom quaxoso ketquaxstruc tiep hom nayxổ số kiến thiết trực tiếpxổ số kq hôm nayso xo kq trực tuyenkết quả xổ số miền bắc trực tiếpxo so miền namxổ số miền nam trực tiếptrực tiếp xổ số hôm nayket wa xsKQ XOSOxoso onlinexo so truc tiep hom nayxsttso mien bac trong ngàyKQXS3Msố so mien bacdu doan xo so onlinedu doan cau loxổ số kenokqxs vnKQXOSOKQXS hôm naytrực tiếp kết quả xổ số ba miềncap lo dep nhat hom naysoi cầu chuẩn hôm nayso ket qua xo soXem kết quả xổ số nhanh nhấtSX3MIENXSMB chủ nhậtKQXSMNkết quả mở giải trực tuyếnGiờ vàng chốt số OnlineĐánh Đề Con Gìdò số miền namdò vé số hôm nayso mo so debach thủ lô đẹp nhất hôm naycầu đề hôm naykết quả xổ số kiến thiết toàn quốccau dep 88xsmb rong bach kimket qua xs 2023dự đoán xổ số hàng ngàyBạch thủ đề miền BắcSoi Cầu MB thần tàisoi cau vip 247soi cầu tốtsoi cầu miễn phísoi cau mb vipxsmb hom nayxs vietlottxsmn hôm naycầu lô đẹpthống kê lô kép xổ số miền Bắcquay thử xsmnxổ số thần tàiQuay thử XSMTxổ số chiều nayxo so mien nam hom nayweb đánh lô đề trực tuyến uy tínKQXS hôm nayxsmb ngày hôm nayXSMT chủ nhậtxổ số Power 6/55KQXS A trúng roycao thủ chốt sốbảng xổ số đặc biệtsoi cầu 247 vipsoi cầu wap 666Soi cầu miễn phí 888 VIPSoi Cau Chuan MBđộc thủ desố miền bắcthần tài cho sốKết quả xổ số thần tàiXem trực tiếp xổ sốXIN SỐ THẦN TÀI THỔ ĐỊACầu lô số đẹplô đẹp vip 24hsoi cầu miễn phí 888xổ số kiến thiết chiều nayXSMN thứ 7 hàng tuầnKết quả Xổ số Hồ Chí Minhnhà cái xổ số Việt NamXổ Số Đại PhátXổ số mới nhất Hôm Nayso xo mb hom nayxxmb88quay thu mbXo so Minh ChinhXS Minh Ngọc trực tiếp hôm nayXSMN 88XSTDxs than taixổ số UY TIN NHẤTxs vietlott 88SOI CẦU SIÊU CHUẨNSoiCauVietlô đẹp hôm nay vipket qua so xo hom naykqxsmb 30 ngàydự đoán xổ số 3 miềnSoi cầu 3 càng chuẩn xácbạch thủ lônuoi lo chuanbắt lô chuẩn theo ngàykq xo-solô 3 càngnuôi lô đề siêu vipcầu Lô Xiên XSMBđề về bao nhiêuSoi cầu x3xổ số kiến thiết ngày hôm nayquay thử xsmttruc tiep kết quả sxmntrực tiếp miền bắckết quả xổ số chấm vnbảng xs đặc biệt năm 2023soi cau xsmbxổ số hà nội hôm naysxmtxsmt hôm nayxs truc tiep mbketqua xo so onlinekqxs onlinexo số hôm nayXS3MTin xs hôm nayxsmn thu2XSMN hom nayxổ số miền bắc trực tiếp hôm naySO XOxsmbsxmn hôm nay188betlink188 xo sosoi cầu vip 88lô tô việtsoi lô việtXS247xs ba miềnchốt lô đẹp nhất hôm naychốt số xsmbCHƠI LÔ TÔsoi cau mn hom naychốt lô chuẩndu doan sxmtdự đoán xổ số onlinerồng bạch kim chốt 3 càng miễn phí hôm naythống kê lô gan miền bắcdàn đề lôCầu Kèo Đặc Biệtchốt cầu may mắnkết quả xổ số miền bắc hômSoi cầu vàng 777thẻ bài onlinedu doan mn 888soi cầu miền nam vipsoi cầu mt vipdàn de hôm nay7 cao thủ chốt sốsoi cau mien phi 7777 cao thủ chốt số nức tiếng3 càng miền bắcrồng bạch kim 777dàn de bất bạion newsddxsmn188betw88w88789bettf88sin88suvipsunwintf88five8812betsv88vn88Top 10 nhà cái uy tínsky88iwinlucky88nhacaisin88oxbetm88vn88w88789betiwinf8betrio66rio66lucky88oxbetvn88188bet789betMay-88five88one88sin88bk88xbetoxbetMU88188BETSV88RIO66ONBET88188betM88M88SV88Jun-68Jun-88one88iwinv9betw388OXBETw388w388onbetonbetonbetonbet88onbet88onbet88onbet88onbetonbetonbetonbetqh88mu88Nhà cái uy tínpog79vp777vp777vipbetvipbetuk88uk88typhu88typhu88tk88tk88sm66sm66me88me888live8live8livesm66me88win798livesm66me88win79pog79pog79vp777vp777uk88uk88tk88tk88luck8luck8kingbet86kingbet86k188k188hr99hr99123b8xbetvnvipbetsv66zbettaisunwin-vntyphu88vn138vwinvwinvi68ee881xbetrio66zbetvn138i9betvipfi88clubcf68onbet88ee88typhu88onbetonbetkhuyenmai12bet-moblie12betmoblietaimienphi247vi68clupcf68clupvipbeti9betqh88onb123onbefsoi cầunổ hũbắn cáđá gàđá gàgame bàicasinosoi cầuxóc đĩagame bàigiải mã giấc mơbầu cuaslot gamecasinonổ hủdàn đềBắn cácasinodàn đềnổ hũtài xỉuslot gamecasinobắn cáđá gàgame bàithể thaogame bàisoi cầukqsssoi cầucờ tướngbắn cágame bàixóc đĩa开云体育开云体育开云体育乐鱼体育乐鱼体育乐鱼体育亚新体育亚新体育亚新体育爱游戏爱游戏爱游戏华体会华体会华体会IM体育IM体育沙巴体育沙巴体育PM体育PM体育AG尊龙AG尊龙AG尊龙AG百家乐AG百家乐AG百家乐AG真人AG真人<AG真人<皇冠体育皇冠体育PG电子PG电子万博体育万博体育KOK体育KOK体育欧宝体育江南体育江南体育江南体育半岛体育半岛体育半岛体育凯发娱乐凯发娱乐杏彩体育杏彩体育杏彩体育FB体育PM真人PM真人<米乐娱乐米乐娱乐天博体育天博体育开元棋牌开元棋牌j9九游会j9九游会开云体育AG百家乐AG百家乐AG真人AG真人爱游戏华体会华体会im体育kok体育开云体育开云体育开云体育乐鱼体育乐鱼体育欧宝体育ob体育亚博体育亚博体育亚博体育亚博体育亚博体育亚博体育开云体育开云体育棋牌棋牌沙巴体育买球平台新葡京娱乐开云体育mu88qh88
Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter