Johnny Ray, 15
- St Patrick’s College
- Review Date
- 19 July, 2014
I really liked 20th Century Fox's reboot of the "Planet of the Apes" films: "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" from 2011 and was really looking forward to seeing its sequel "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes". After seeing it in the cinema I have to say that not only was it better than the first film it is my favourite film of the summer so far. It's hard to know where to start when writing about "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" but if I had to sum it up in one word it would be "Amazing".
I think that perhaps the best thing about this film is that it is so smartly done in pretty much every aspect. It takes its premise of a post-apocalyptic world with a society of intelligent apes seriously but also manages to intertwine it with some extremely impressive visual effects and action scenes. There are actually only a few action scenes in this film but they don't feel underwhelming because the scenes before them build up to them by creating tension. This film really focuses more on story and characters than action. This might sound odd as a great majority of the characters are CGI apes but the apes are all very well developed characters and even more interesting than a lot of human characters in big summer blockbusters. One of the flaws in "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" I thought was that it didn't focus enough on the ape characters which were the most interesting characters in the film. "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" focuses on human and ape characters in equal measure to great results.
This film was directed by Matt Reeves the director of "Cloverfield" which I liked but I thought would've been better without the found footage gimmick and if it didn't show its giant monster as sparingly as it did. Reeves really showed his craft in this film with a lot scenes being very artistically done. The actors and actresses in this film were all very good as well. I'd say that the two performances in this film that stood out to me the most were the motion capture performances of Andy Serkis (the king of motion capture acting) as "Caesar" the leader of the apes and Toby Kebbell as "Koba" Caesar's devious second in command. Of course none of this would be possible without a good script. This film was written by Mark Bomback, Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver who have written an engaging easy to follow story and interesting characters that have clear motivations.
On the topic of this film's visual effects not a bad word can be said. Simply it's the best CGI that I've ever seen. It's so convincing and realistic looking that you forget that what you're watching isn't real which is just about the best thing that an effect can do in a film. The Academy Awards idiotically snubbed "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" for the best visual effects award and didn't even nominate last years brilliant "Pacific Rim". If they're stupid enough to not give "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" the award for best visual effects I'll get so angry that I'll eat my own hat. Except I don't have a hat though so I would go out to the nearest clothes shop and purchase the cheapest hat there and devour it in a fit of animalistic rage.....okay I'm kind of straying off topic. The point is the visual effects in this film are among the best I've ever seen if not the best.
I think the only complaint that I have about this film is that one of the characters in it felt the slightest bit one dimensional but that's such a minor complaint that I may as well have not even written it. If you can find a way to unread the last sentence do it. Or don't your head might explode from too much concentration.
My most anticipated film of the summer is Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy" which I'm sure is going to be great but it's going to have to do a lot to beat "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" to win the title of my favourite film of the summer. I loved "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" and would recommend it to anybody looking for a really good movie to see this summer. Trust me this film is worth your money. I would give "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" a 5/5 and will definitely see its sequel if they make one. If this review didn't make you want to see this film then maybe this sentence will: It's very likely that this is the only film that you'll see this summer with a bunch of chimpanzees on horses with machine guns in it.