When I first saw the trailer for Rise of the Planet of the Apes, I remember posting a Facebook status: “Slap the word ‘Rise’ to a franchise and make a reboot out of it”. Little did i know that it’d be one of my favorite movies of the year. The movie was a brilliant reboot for the franchise especially considering what Tim Burton had done to it way back in 2001. Rise Of Planet Of The Apes told the story of Caesar the Ape and how he started an Ape Revolution and the movie also ended setting up everything for a sequel.
Enter Dawn of The Planet of The Apes, and when you are done with pronouncing the overlong title, the movie picks up the story after a decade or so from the events of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, most of the human population had perished due to the Simian Flu and Caesar has started his own herd, his own family deep inside the woods. Going in for Dawn of The Planet of The Apes, I had no clue what was in store for me, the opening scene itself blew me away and I wouldn’t want to spoil it for you. While Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes was for the most part commercial and pleasant, Dawn of The Planet of The Apes is definitely dark it gives out that grim feeling. The story is well crafted and leaves no room for a single speck of boredom. If you were someone like me, I am sure you would have tried to piece together a sense of story from the previews but believe me, the movie goes nothing like you’ve ever imagined, predictability takes a back seat and the movie throws at you, everything you’ve never expected.
Needless to say Caesar is once again the core of the story and it doesn’t disappoint, not even a bit. The movie was about 130 minutes but it kept me on the edge of my seat, wanting more. Its well paced and you will never feel one scene out of place or unnecessary. Instead of dialogue-ridden human sequences, I preferred the ape sequences more, of course it was a total pandemonium what with the apes screaming and making a ruckus but when Caesar’s on screen there no possible way to get my eyes off it. Like many even I wanted Andy Serkis to win an Academy Award for Best Actor for playing Caesar in Rise of Planet of the Apes, such was power and perfection that he had brought underneath the layers of CG and you can see more of that here. If I had to give you one single reason to watch this movie other than Caesar, it would be his trusted right hand, Koba. Koba is insanely intimidating and could be considered one of the best anti protagonist in recent times. The humans, played by Jason Clarke, Keri Russel and Gary Oldman did their parts well. Jason Clarke did bring about a sense of empathy backed up by Keri Russell while Gary Oldman’s character was a prisoner of his own tragedies from the past.The visuals have been beefed up to an extend where you’d think twice seeing an Ape, if its indeed CG or real. Its a huge leap from the first movie and there were scenes where I was truly dumbfounded. I know 5 years from now, there might be something more advanced and visually arresting than this, but when I was watching this at the big screen, all i could do was gape at WETA’s visual wizardry that went into the movie. Michael Giacchino’s score became that icing on that immensely appealing cake.
Having directed movies like Cloverfield and Let Me In, Matt Reeves skillful direction comes into play and makes Dawn of The Planet of The Apes a great watch. Had i to concise and compare Dawn of The Planet of The Apes, it would be with The Dark Knight, Rise of Planet of the Apes being Batman Begins of course. I know I went overboard here comparing it with the Dark Knight, but still it deserves to be compared with no less. Dawn of The Planet of The Apes is undoubtedly one of the best movies in recent times, I even felt it’s a notch above X-Men Days of Future Past. I can assure you this’ll be one of those movies that’ll keep you glued to your seats. On a surface it looks like any good summer action blockbuster, but there’s more to it that meets the eye just like the undertones of Rise of Planet Of The Apes. Dawn of The Planet of The Apes is not monkey business, well sorta, but its still a must watch and SHOULDN’T NOT BE MISSED.