July 18, 2017
War for the Planet of the Apes is upon us and we’re going bananas for it! The final chapter of the rebooted franchise that was nearly destroyed by the likes of Tim Burton and Mark Wahlberg back in 2001 has finally arrived and it was spectacular! To get it right out of the gate – WFTPOTA (it’s the longest one yet) is probably one of the greatest movies ever made, which makes it one of the greatest trilogies ever made. It is an extremely rare achievement in Hollywood; this Planet of the Apes trilogy is so good that it is right up there with, dare I say, the original Star Wars trilogy or Back to the Future movies.
Truth be told – there isn’t much war going on, but it is a very character driven story of Caesar battling through a personal loss and fighting his inner demons. Those, who expect this movie to be an all-out war for the planet domination will be quite disappointed, I fear. But after the trilogy has reached it conclusion, it occurs that the fate of humanity and simians were determined from the moment the simian flu virus broke free: humanity would succumb to the virus and apes would replace them no matter how loud humanity’s death rattle would be. So, in turn, there were no need to show the human troops and apes battle (as amazing as it would’ve been), but it was clever to scale the whole thing down and connect the audiences with the characters we had the pleasure to observe. Granted, there are some impressive battle scenes, but funnily enough, they don’t really involve apes – the grand finale is people VS people (it’s just that apes are also there).
On the other hand, it is simply phenomenal how far Caesar have gone from being a clever child to becoming a rebel and then a true leader that would guide his fellow apes to the future. As stated before, Caesar has lost his wife and a son that were killed by a newly-introduced character of Woody Harrelson, the Colonel, which sets Caesar on a path of vengeance. The funny thing about it, is that no matter how determined Caesar is to kill and show no mercy to humans, he is being pushed back to his compassionate nature. For instance, he encounters a muted girl (played by Amiah Miller), who than becomes a person he truly cares about. We have also been introduced to a new character called Bad Ape (portrayed by Steve Zahn); Many feared that Bad Ape would be a comic relief character, which is a risky thing to include in such a tense war-movie, but Steve pulled that off brilliantly. Bad Ape turned out to be one of the most compelling characters in the movie, as he truly connects with Caesar emotionally and joins him on this journey against all of his instincts. Karin Konoval who played Maurice was also remarkable, she brought so much kindness to her character. Lest we forgot Luca (Michael Adamthwaite), when that giant gorilla died, the whole movie theater got teary-eyed.
Of course, the highest praise to Andy Serkis who played Caesar and deserves an Oscar like no one else. In this movie, Caesar is probably more human than anyone else in the entire trilogy.
At the end of the day, War for the Planet of the Apes is one of the best sleeper blockbusters ever made and you should definitely go check it out in the cinemas.