Planet of the Apes

• TOP NOTCH (my top choices)
• HONORABLE MENTION (well worth watching)
• YOU MIGHT WANT TO CONSIDER (I like them but you might not)
• CLASSICS (Great movies up through the 1960s - many don't have any rating)

Charlton Heston, Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter

Summary - An astronaut crew crash-lands on a planet in the distant future where intelligent talking apes are the dominant species, and humans are the oppressed and enslaved.

Cautions - Some minor language and male behinds.

Commentary - Perhaps you watched this when you were young and can't imagine that it could hold up against the big budget remakes since 1968 - Surprise! It does! A couple years ago, I had my sons watch each version (1968, 2001, 2011) and, by far, they liked the original best. It's not because it has flashy effects (although the facial prosthetics are incredibly effective and inventive) but because it knows what it is - true science fiction. The characters and story are everything you came to this movie looking for and it delivers. But the clearly focused social commentary sets this movie apart. Science fiction is at it's best when it gives us the opportunity to examine our assumptions by changing the lens through which we see them. How does it look when ape scientists think apes evolved from humans? Or when humans are treated like "animals?"

Aside from its brilliant integration of social commentary, Planet of the Apes is also a stunning achievement from a technical perspective. The film-makers have created a world that transports you.

As I always do - I really recommend the blu-ray version.


Popular Posts