Director Matt Reeve’s (Cloverfield) “Dawn of the Rise of the Apes” is about as good a sequel (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) as your going to see: Just be ready for a whole lot of serious monkey business.
Ten years after “Rise” we find Caesar (Andy Serkis) and his simian colleagues living in the Redwood forest enclave on the outskirts of San Francisco where we last left them. They are under the impression that all humans have been eradicated by the virus which first appeared in Dr. Will Rodman’s lab ─ but they are wrong. A group of humans (Jason Clarke, Gary Oldman, Keri Russel, Kirk Acevedo, and Kodi Smit-McPhee) have made their way into the forest with their destination being a dilapidated power plant which they would like to activate, so that power can be restored. During the mission a human confronts a couple of the chimps in the woods and shoots one of them dead. Caesar, who would like to live in peace, now has a crisis on his hands. An instigator ape named Koba (Tony Kebbell), who is a human hater, now has ammunition to start a war with the humans: Game on.
The apes in “Dawn” are so life-like that you forget that these are actors wearing digitally enhanced chimp suits. Caesar’s scowl and Koba’s menacing facial countenance bring these two adversaries to life, while a host of gorillas, orangutans, and chimps, all take on character. There is a terrific battle scene which takes on a “Star Wars”- like confrontation in the woods. And let’s not forget the guns: there are plenty of guns for everybody. I am sure there is some kind of gun play statement being made here, but I am not quite sure what it is. Anyway, I enjoyed the movie immensely ─ See it.
My Rating: 5 of 5 Ape Attacks.