What on EARTH are the people who have raved about this film watching? Anything other than a co-ordinated, presumably paid, campaign of solicited positive reviews seems improbable to me.
I was really looking forward to seeing this film. I loved the opening movie of this new take on the franchise for it's original and thoughtful way of kick-starting an updated 21st century imagining for the birth of sentient apes. I read Pierre Boulle's "Monkey Planet" in the 70's, and loved the original series of movies (even the naffer, later ones after "escape"). This may be largely influenced by my youthful age at the time and general love of science fiction.
I have no problem with the willing suspension of disbelief or escapism. A film doesn't have to make perfect sense in "the real world" for me to appreciate it. What i do have a huge problem with, however, is the lazy and cavalier way this movie utterly cuts loose from the premise so carefully set up in "Rise", and which i was intrigued to see explored further in this plot less, pointless travesty.
There is so much wrong with this movie that i am simply unable to catalogue it, however, here are a few pointers.......
1) it is set just 10 years after "rise". Yet, in this time, the West Coast of America has in the main turned into jungle. Old petrol stations are shown looking as overgrown and integrated into the greenery as various Inca ruins look today, surrounded by mature trees that tower above them.
2) There is a massive population of smart apes who can use sign language, and some talking apes living in the jungle. Far more than the indigenous population of the west coast could ever explain (though only (count 'em) one Orangutang, called Maurice, in the film's only nice touch - a nod to Maurice Evans who played Dr Zaius in the original). He, at least, can also write, scribing "Ape not kill ape" etc on rocks, which the baby apes can presumably read??? Are you chuckling yet? In just ten short years since "rise", 100's of thousands of years of evolution have been spread liberally, though very unevenly, across this vast ape population, who presumably flew over to the states when they heard how cool the west coast was to hang out at these days. Though, even the apes who can't talk yet, sort of grab that extra bit of evolution needed to get a bit shouty when some "dramatic" piece of "plot" development spurs them individually on....
Actually, i am losing the will to go on, since i would run up against the 1000 word limit long before i ran out of ire at the lazy, trite, inconsistent, banal, cliched "plot" so i will limit myself to one more observation.
3) once the apes grab automatic weapons, as they invariably must, they become instantly proficient in their use and have the supernatural ability to summon UNLIMITED AMMUNITION from the same mysterious realm that transported them all in, forged their tree dwellings and bypassed Darwin so succinctly. Plus, they get the ability to put tanks on autopilot.
And i didn't even start on the humans tale.....what the hell was Gary Oldman thinking of, appearing in this pile of chimp manure. Or the overblown schmaltzy soundtrack, which "helpfully' illustrates important emotional, or dramatic "events" in the film.
Truly, this is an experience beyond parody. As Charlton Heston would undoubtedly have commented to the director and writers of this movie "You maniacs! You blew it up! Ah, damn you! God damn you all to hell"
1/10 for very fluid CGI, though in 2014 i begin to question whether this warrants any points, such is the accepted state of the art?