Gilberto Says WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES Is A Powerful Ending To A Great Trilogy.

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FILM REVIEW: WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES

BY GILBERT CAMPA

Movie trilogies can sometimes be difficult to complete for a number of reasons, sometimes they’re could be a change of direction through the films, the films could sometimes be released too far apart of each other which takes the anticipation away, or sometimes one of the individual films could be considered too weak so it brings the whole trilogy down as a result. That’s not the case with the Serkis Apes Trilogy, just like some of the best movie trilogies in cinema (Star Wars, Back To The Future, Godfather, Toy Story, etc.) War for the Planet of the Apes gives a powerful and complete ending to these series of films that started with 2011’s Rise of the Planet of The Apes.

Matt Reeves is back at the helm for this film with the same team of producers, editors and cinematographer from the previous installment. War for the Planet of the Apes takes place two years after the evens of Dawn as Caesar and the rest of his family and friends of intelligent apes continue to fight the remaining human population as it continues to diminish due to the Simian Flu that has been killing them.  But because of this war the population of the Apes is slipping away as well which leaves Caesar at a crossroads, should he go after the humans or protect the apes to secure the future of their species.

Out of all the movies in this trilogy, War has the least amount of human characters which leaves the majority of the spotlight and the movie on the apes and specifically Caesar. Andy Serkis in my opinion gives his best performance as Caesar as he goes through a lot of self realization and sacrifices in this film, mainly due to the hatred that he has for the main antagonist of the movie, the Colonial played beautifully by Woody Harrelson who carries his own against Caesar in more ways than one. One of the things that makes this film stand out from the previous two are how much exposition and character development that the apes go through, besides the internal struggle that Caesar is having there are apes that are on both sides who are all fighting for the same thing, survival by any means necessary. Another great part about the movie is the inclusion of humor that is used, primarily driven by “Bad Ape” portrayed by Steve Zahn who brings a level of calmness and a natural type of humor that eases the tension (which is very present in the movie).

If I were to generate a theme or come up with what the overall message this film is trying to tell, its survival. Throughout the film there are choices and revelations that all deal with the ultimate enemy, time and much of that is driven through the character moments. One of the examples of this is the character of Nova played by Amiah Miller who serves the most important role in the film when it is all set and done that really emphasizes what I was speaking to earlier. Each character in this movie is layered and not one dimensional which creates a discourse that each character therefore carries throughout the movie which makes you invested in every ape and human in the film.

Ultimately in the end after one of the most powerful third acts that I can remember seeing, War for the Planet of the Apes, without mentioning any spoilers,delivers a truly satisfying ending to one of the best film franchises in recent history. A majority of the credit should really be given to Andy Serkis who continues to deliver the most unique and emotional performances regardless of the motion capture technology or not. And for Matt Reeves, personally speaking I am so interested to see what he is going to do with the upcoming Ben Affleck Batman film, so things are definitely looking up.

 

FINAL WORD: