I went on opening night in flag city USA, Findlay, Ohio, to see the premiere of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the sequel to the 2011 Rise of the Planet of The Apes, 10pm showing, in 3D. It cost $24.50 for two tickets. There were 23 other people in the theater, opening night for a highly anticipated film, and it was the first time I had been to a movie theater in two years, I’m kind of selective about seeing movies in the theater, I would not say it is a hobby of mine.
As a fan of the first film, and of the series, few could deny the solidity of this science fiction classic from 1973, I was interested to see where the story would go and looked forward to seeing the film. The movie opens 10 years after Caesar and his followers made their escape from the city of San Francisco with Earth stricken by a plague dubbed the Simian Flu which decimates the human population and has allowed Caesar and his army of strikingly intelligent Apes to thrive. Can humans and apes coexist in the New World Order? Here’s 5 things about the movie.
1. The CGI effects are amazing.
Things sure have come a long way in special effects since 1968 when the original Planet of the Apes captured movie lore in American history and spawned 4 sequels, plus a 1999 reboot by Tim Burton. The CGI Apes are your friends and somehow I’m sure audiences are rooting for the Apes to triumph over their human adversaries.
2. It’s a good story.
The world goes from 7 billion people to less than 700 million in a period of 18-24 months. How would humanity respond? Dawn portrays a story of human savagery against each other for survival while the Apes educate themselves, live in harmony with the new world, slowly being reclaimed by Mother Nature, with encounters with humans became more rare over the years as the disease from the film, created by genetic scientists and unleashed at a corporate laboratory, ravaged the human population. Human survivors want to use the dam to generate electricity and turn the lights back on the city causing an uneasy tension between the humans and the apes, something those with a lust for power could use to their advantage.
3. Caesar is the boss.
Basic rules of the jungle still apply, the alpha male must defend his throne every so often, and their new found intelligence and more human qualities do not leave some of the top level apes immune to more human emotions like jealousy, anger, and greed. Caesar is a warrior and considers “the big picture” when making decisions about how to handle the human incursion into their territory.
4. Post Apocalyptic San Francisco was wonderful and held true to many landmarks that served as inspiration for the dark world portrayed by Director Matt Reeves
The church, the one in North Beach by Washington Square, served as the human sanctuary and the Bart Station on Market Street served as the inspiration for the underground scenes. I think … I’ve been to San Francisco quite a bit in life, I chuckled a few times when I saw things that really held true to what San Francisco is today. Cheers to you.
5. What’s next for the franchise?
An untitled Planet of the Apes Sequel is scheduled for 2016. That’s about all we know. Rise of the Planet of the Apes told the story of how the apes became intelligent, left the city for the wilderness, and how the humans unknowingly unleashed a plague of biblical proportions. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes shows the world 10 years later and tells the story of the migration of the apes back to the city. The third installment must surely cover the War between the human and the apes. Count me in for the price of 2 tickets.
Just a normal guy going to the movies with his girlfriend on a Friday night to see a movie.