Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was in two words: awe and some. Ten years after the celebrated Alzheimer’s medication turned deadly, we’re reintroduced to the world where humans are scarce and the apes are growing in population. Led by Caesar (who is played by the king of post human acting, Andy Serkis), we get to know how the apes have thrived during the ten years the humans were wiped out. Malcom (Jason Clarke) and Dreyfus (Gary Oldham) are the leaders of a colony in what is left of San Francisco. As they endeavor to reestablish power throughout the city the world of humans and apes collide.
This movie is intense. There are some moments of tenderheartedness to let your heart warm up, but only long enough to plunge you back into panic. There were so many “edge-of-your-seat” scenes that my jaw hurt afterwards from clenching my teeth! The music was perfect. The apes were completely believable. And what is more unsettling than to be surrounding by humongous silverback gorillas with a lust for human blood? Oh, I know, a chimpanzee ravaged by hate wielding two M4s on the back of a charging black horse. Yeah, that wins.
The hero of this movie is undoubtedly Caesar. Despite his rocky childhood and adolescence, he is the kind of leader you can’t help but feel proud of. It’s weird. Other than thinking about ramen noodles randomly throughout, all I could think about was how awesome Caesar was and taking mental notes on his leadership style. Bizarre? No, great writing. Props to writers Mark Bomback, Rick Jaffa, and Amanda Silver and major props to director, Matt Reeves. And the Oscar goes to – Andy Serkis!
Rotten Tomatoes gave this one a 91%. I THOROUGHLY recommend it. Your trip to the zoo will never be the same. “Caesar, is that you?”