July 12, 2014
Movie Night: Rise of the Planet of the Apes.
Review #615: Rise of the Planet of the Apes.
James Franco (Will Rodman), Freida Pinto (Caroline Aranha), Andy Serkis (Caesar), John Lithgow (Charles Rodma), Brian Cox (John Landon), Tom Felton (Dodge Landon), David Oyelowo (Steven Jacobs), Tyler Labine (Robert Franklin), and Karin Konoval (Maurice) Directed by Rupert Wyatt.
I admit, maybe I should've watched and reviewed this movie earlier in the year, or even earlier, but mistakes happen, so here's my chance to rectify that. So how's the movie? You know who makes the movie better than just good? Andy Serkis as Caesar. It is just more than performance capture, it's watching Serkis just disappear into the role, you forget about the fact that it's a person's movements being captured and later being turned into looking like an ape. It's fun to watch Serkis act in a sense without speaking, though he does have lines near the end, which genuinely surprised me, especially his last three: "Caesar is home", which is really touching to me for some reason. Maybe it's because his plot line closes smoothly, and the movie works best when focused on the apes. That's not to say the human cast is bad, but Serkis steals the show. Franco does fine admittedly, and his scenes with Serkis work well. Pinto is okay, but she doesn't really get much screen time to do anything, even Lithgow has stuff to do (though my praise of Lithgow is 90% due to his performance and 10% because you don't see Lithgow much anymore, unless you capture a Third Rock from the Sun rerun or watch Shrek), but at least the cast is enjoyable at times. The effects are good, it's fun to watch the apes when they march on the Golden Gate Bridge. The story is alright, I suppose, the movie is entertaining enough, and the end scene is brilliant and just makes you want more, like a sequel, which came out yesterday. This is a movie that while not as good as the original Planet of the Apes, is at least a good origin story.
Overall, I give it 8 out of 10 stars.