A blog dealing with either the joy of cinema or the agony of cinema--nothing in between.
Sunday, August 7, 2011
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
A scientist working for a genetic engineering company has been working on an Alzheimer's drug that repairs brain tissue and believes that he has now perfected it. However, during a pitch to the board members, one of the apes goes ballistic and injures several as it tears its way across the lab before stifled. The rest of the injected monkeys are ordered to be put down, but the scientist decides offer refuge to a baby ape, who is the son of the injected chimp that went crazy. As time goes by the baby, or Caesar as he is named, shows signs of incredible intelligence leading the scientist decides to test the drug on his father, who has dementia. After showing positive results, he begins to regress and soon Caesar attacks a neighbor out of defense. Now reprimanded to a sanctuary, Caesar begins to conceive of a plan to unite the other chimps, break out of the facility, and begin the battle against the humans for planet earth. Rise of the Planet of the Apes is a low expectations film that surprises and dazzles, and is a fine example of big budget fun that has been lacking in this summer's blockbusters. The use of CGI is incredibly fine and the film is excitingly directed by Rupert Wyatt. James Franco sleep walks through his role here, which he has been getting good at doing lately, but the real star of the film is Andy Serkis. Using the same motion capture CGI techniques that provided the facial expression of King Kong and Gollum in the Lord of the Rings, Caesar becomes a lifelike and sympathetic character. Even though it is a prequel to the series, the use of The Planet of the Apes in the title does not do this film justice, and is probably the reason for low expectations. The Rise of the Planet of the Apes is an exciting film that much like its star anthropoids can stand on its own two.