17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on January 1, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
After not seeing this version of the film for so long, the restored scenes really stand out and are a plus to the movie as a whole.
The following previously missing scenes have been restored:
1. After Virgil explains to Caeser the classroom situation in which Abe (the teacher) told Aldo "No!" at class, McDonald elaborates further that Abe should have known better.
2. After Caeser, Virgil, and McDonald enter the forbidden city, a mutant is seen sitting near Kolp and messing with some wires, presumably the alpha omega missile wiring.
3. Prior to the viewing of the archives, and while traveling down the city corridor, McDonald fusses at Caeser and Virgil for being so slow. Caeser and Virgil claim that they can smell the radioactive humans and mention that they are not like the other normal humans.
4. After Virgil shoots the moving camara he apoligizes to Caeser and claims that everyone now knows they are there.
5. After Kolp tells the captain that they are going after the apes "now" he then tells Alma that, no matter what, surrender is not an option. Kolp: "Alma, either we must cage the beast, or destroy the whole zoo." They then gather around the alpha omega missile. Kolp opens the missile silo hatch while Mendez looks on.
6. Extended scene of the convoy of mutants going towards ape city with some of the mutants walking out of rank and falling on the ground, presumably dying.
7. After Kolp and the captain view the ape barricade, Virgil sneeks down from his house - then the movie cuts back to Kolp who reminds someone via radio about his message to Alma in case things go wrong.
8. Extra war footage of the apes fighting the mutants with the barracade on fire.
9 A scene near Kolp's bus where a gorilla blows up a mutant with a grenade. Afterwards, Aldo dances on top of the bus in victory.
10. A final scene of the mutants with Mendez and Alma playing checkers. Another mutant shows up and informs that they have lost the war, then falls over dead. Alma goes over and prepares to launch the missile, but Mendez talks her out of it. This is an important scene which directly ties in this movie with "Beneath the Planet of The Apes" for continuity purposes.
The movie intro of Aldo riding his horse into the village is also extended and contains the full version of the title theme music instead of the shortened theatrical version.
I agree with one of the reviewers that the reason this movie had some of it's material previously edited was to make the ending more uplifting. However, if you had already seen this movie on television in the 70's (all scenes included) then you knew what the tear from Caeser's statue at the end of the movie ultimately signified. I have always thought "Battle of the Planet of The Apes" as a dark and mysterious movie and with the edited scenes included this makes it much more so.
The soundtrack, a masterpiece by Leonard Rosenman, is extremely gloomy and eerie. The technique to creating this dark music is called atonality - meaning there is no center musical key or root notes, but the musical notes are related to each other using the 12-tone system. This type of music can sound quite disturbing at times due to the dissonance.
For some of you who are confused with the timeline of this movie, the year shown at the beginning of the movie (2670 AD) is the time of the Lawgiver's speech - NOT the time of Caeser's reign (which was much earlier). The Lawgiver is reading out of the sacred scrolls of history mentioned by Dr. Zaius in the first two films.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on May 16, 2012
Finally, we have come round full circle. Oh, there's undoubtedly room for one more between this one and the original, but it was never made. As mentioned before, they all seem to have been made with no implied promise of another episode.
This is just a few years after the revolution from "Conquest." Or rather, it is a flash-back to that time, because the opening scene is the Lawgiver reading to a group of children, both ape and human, about the early days, and Caesar the hero.
Caesar's son was still a child, but since we can't say how quickly these kids grow, it's hard to say exactly how long it's been since the revolution. Caesar and McDonald, the black man who helped in fomenting the revolution (with several comparisons to the days when his people were slaves, too), together with a peaceful group of apes and men (and women) have created a rather primitive communal village where they all work hard and live in peace. But the proud General Aldo (he insists on the title) thinks learning English is far less important than learning riding and weapons and so on.
Because Aldo is so temperamental, he stirs up problems within the community. He clearly resents Caesar's rule, even though everyone except the gorillas seems to have accepted his leadership without question. That's champanzees, orangutans and humans. But Caesar himself stirs up far more trouble without intending to when McDonald suggests that they could go to the Forbidden City and see the tapes of Caesar's mother and father that were presented to the presidential commission. McDonald's brother was head of the archives, and he knew where the tapes were.
The city is radioactive, but they take a Geiger counter and count on getting out as quickly as possible. But there are people living in the underground portions of the city, people who are mostly suffering from radiation poisoning. These, then, provide the link to the "Beneath" episode.
But Caesar's curiosity will cost them all plenty. Because now the humans know that there are apes who survived the nuclear war, and that they have a village somewhere nearby. So they gather together what vehicles and weapons they can muster, including a pitiful old school bus, and head out to conquer the ape village.
No, I'm not going to tell you any more than that. Due to the circular nature of the time sequence of this series, you know the ultimate results already, if you've watched the earlier episodes, or even just read the earlier reviews. And it is worthwhile to see the entire series in sequence. Go ahead; go ape!
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on February 19, 2012
Format: Blu-rayVerified Purchase
"Battle for the Planet of the Apes" is the fifth and final film in the original Planet of the Apes series. It was released in 1973 and was produced by Arthur P. Jacobs, directed by J. Lee Thompson, and written by John William Corrington and Joyce Hooper Corrington. It stars Roddy McDowall, Claude Akins, Natalie Trundy, Severn Darden, Lew Ayres, Paul Williams, and John Huston.
This is a film sequel that I do believe requires the viewer to see at least part IV before watching this film. You'll be able to enjoy it if you haven't seen the other entries, but there will be some unanswered questions if you are not familiar with the other Ape films.
THE PLOT -
It's been twelve years since the events of "Conquest of the Planet of the Apes" - Due to so many Ape-uprisings, as well as a nuclear war among humans, the Apes have taken over the world. In a place called "Ape City", under Ape leader Caesar's leadership, all Apes have learned to speak English, as well as do many other things. Almost all human beings have been enslaved by the Apes and are kept to serve their needs.
Caesar and his human friend MacDonald desire for the Apes and humans to live in peace. However, a militant gorilla named Aldo believes the Apes should become more strict on the humans and that all humans are evil and violent by nature, and must be punished for all their past crimes against Apes. Aldo plots with the other Gorillas to carry out justice.
Meanwhile, a group of radiation-scarred human rebels who live amongst each other out in the desert, far away from Ape City and any Apes, and are lead by a crazed, Ape-hating fanatic named Kolp have plans to invade Ape City, rebuild society, and put the Apes back into slavery. What will happen when two civilizations go to war and battle for control of the Earth?
MY THOUGHTS -
This is a film that does not tell you who the heros are or who the villains are, and suggests to you that you think for yourself. When I watched this film, as well as read the book that was based on the screenplay of the film, I honestly did not know who to cheer for. One of the reasons why I like the movie is because it doesn't really pick a side. It lets the viewer have his or her own opinion, and doesn't really "tell" you who to root for. The movie respects it's audiences intelligence and leaves the end very thought provoking.
I didn't appreciate Aldo's remarks about humans, or how he treated them and what his plans were for them. But then when Kolp was on the screen, I did not care for his pretentious attitude, as well as his condescending comments about Apes. While I do not enjoy seeing humans enslaved, and mistreated, and was hoping that Aldo and Apes like him would get their comeuppance, I also did not enjoy how the Apes were treated in "Conquest" by Kolp and humans like him, and Kolp desires to bring back the old ways.
Like the previous Ape films, this one is also anti-racism, and is full of political, historical, and social parables. The thing about parables in films is I believe plenty of filmmakers desire to make films about current events going on in the world, but can't without offending too many people and thus getting bad press, so for decades now, they create stories that are similar to the events going on in the world, and they change the people involved.
One example I can think of the top of my head is "Predator" - A film about U.S. Soldiers going into a jungle, and facing an enemy they assume is weak, but also an enemy they know nothing about, and they soon discover this enemy is far more powerful then they ever realized. - I just described the Vietnam War in just a few short words.
There are plenty of other examples as well. To get even more touchy - Let's say an Al Qaeda sympathizer desires to make a film about U.S. troops invading the Middle East - He could never make such a film without causing a riot and getting himself killed, so instead - He makes a film about Native Americans in the 1800's getting invaded by U.S. troops, and this Al Qaeda sympathizer could put in all his opinions on the subject on the War on Terror, only change the role of the Al Qaeda to any Native-American tribe. No feelings would get hurt then because we live in a very White-guit society when it comes to the topic of Native Americans.
In the Battle for the Planet of the Apes - The conflict between characters like Kolp and Aldo reminds me of the feud between the Ku Klux Klan and the Black Hebrew Israelites. Two opposite sides of the same coin.
Then (again) there was the Vietnam War - Many Americans in 1973 were against the war, and saw it as a conflict between two power-hungry tyrants much like the conflict between the human mutants and the Gorillas was a battle for power and control.
I also could not help but think of the Reconstruction Era of the United States of America - The U.S.A. freed the slaves, and some former slaves became violent with some White people as a result, so a large number of Whites formed the KKK to defend themselves, and attack former slaves.
Well, in the Ape series, the humans had Apes as their slaves, until the Apes turned the tables on them, and now rule the world. Now Kolp plans to get humans together to fight the Apes and repress them, much like the KKK tried to do in the 1860's when they began attacking former slaves.
On another topic - In Ape City, the Apes (of all ages) are getting educated on a variey of topics such as reading and writing by going to a school taught by a white human schoolteacher. Because there are no Ape teachers, and because the more intelligent Apes are too busy doing other things to help build the city, Ape leader Caesar had no choice but to bring on a human teacher to do the job of educating the other Apes. The school is the final and only place where a human has any type of authority over Apes.
There is a moment where the schoolteacher inadvertently says to Aldo - "No, Aldo, no!" - This is met with shocked silence by everyone - Apes and humans. It turns out one of the first laws enacted in the new Ape civilization was that no human may say "No" to an Ape.
The reason being is because a long time ago when Apes were learning how to be slaves to humans at a place called "Ape Management", one of the things Apes were forced to do was lay down on a table while being electrically shocked over and over again while a recording of a human saying the word "No" was repeated on a speaker. This was done so that the Apes would learn to fear the word "No".
And when an Ape became a slave to humans, if an Ape did something wrong, their human masters would shout "No" and that quickly put the Apes in an act of fear and submission. Humans said "No" so much to Ape that is scarred the Apes emotionally, and now, in this new society where Ape rules over Man, a human's right to say the word "No" to an Ape is a highly offensive crime.
Try to imagine a White man calling a Black man the "N" word - The same shock and anger can be applied in this film when the teacher tells Aldo "No". Which leads to another parable - The N word - One of, if not the most offensive word in the English language.
And why is it a bad word? (I'd like to answer it because by answering it, I am also answering the question of why saying "No" was so upsetting to the Apes in greater detail.) I'm an American History buff, and the N word, among some other comments that in the here and now are consider racist terms, was the most commonly used word to describe black people during slavery days. White people back then thought nothing of it - It was simply what they were called.
What's interesting in "Battle" is that it's okay for an Ape to say "no" to a human, but a human must never say "no" to an Ape. Much like how today, it's okay for an African-American to call another African-American the N word, and it's even okay for a Black person to call a White person the N word, but for any White European-American to say the N word to a Black person is highly offensive. Not even rap star Eminem has never said the N word in his songs, even though the phrase is popular in the gangsta lifestyle. I, the reviewer, and also a white man, do not even dare type the word out, and will always refer to it as the N word.
I believe the word is so offensive because it's a disturbing reminder of how things once were in the U.S.A. for Black people. They were enslaved for their color alone. No reason. The phrase can mean a lot of things. It can mean that it's bad to be Black, it can mean a lower-class of a person, it can be being submissive, etc. It can mean all those things, and more. And it's a powerful word, and a very hurtful word. Black people were slaves for two-hundred and forty-six years. They have only been free for one-hundred and fifty years, and have only had equal rights for fifty-one years. Compared to just how old the world is, Black people have not had equal rights nearly as long as White people, so it's not shock that it's still a sensitive topic.
Another example - The term midget is offensive to little people. I apologize to even little people that may be reading this, but sadly there are a lot of people who still do not know the word is upsetting towards little people. Reason being is because in the 1800's, the only type of work dwarfs could get was with circus's, and they were called "midget" so much that it appears the term later came to mean "short people put on display for public ridicule and sport." The word "midget" thus reminds little people of a bad time for their people' history. The appropriate terms are either dwarf since that is part of the word to describe their disability, and "little people".
So I thought that was an interesting topic the Planet of the Apes makers took on by making it clear in the city of Apes, for a human to say "No" was very inappropriate.
So more parables worth mentioning -
During World War II, Japanese-Americans were taken from their homes, and placed in internment camps by the U.S. Government. In "Battle for the Planet of the Apes", when the mutant humans were about to invade Ape City, the humans living in Ape City were placed in a locked corral by the Apes.
The year was 1973 when the film was released, which was around the same time Whites and Blacks started going to school together, so I thought the issues in the classroom scene were touching on the topic of the tensions that were going on in schools all across the U.S.A. There's also a scene where Kolp and the mutant humans invade Ape City via a school-bus, which was symbolic of the time when Whites and Blacks were being bused together.
Kolp and his men go into Ape City in the school-bus, and given what they planned to do, the bus represented hate and violence. Was something being said about the school-buses in real life? The buses full of White kids that were going into Black schools were no doubt full of hate and violence, and the buses were going to places where they were unwelcome, much like the Apes certainly did not welcome Kolp and the humans.
And for example - Blacks at black schools saw the Whites on the buses going into their school, and assumed the Whites were violent and were going to cause trouble. In the Apes films, Kolp and the humans *were* going to Ape City to cause trouble. And there was a firefight between the humans on the bus, and the Apes outside attacking the bus. So the bus is indeed a very symbolical item to appear in the film, and I think the presence of the bus subconsciously reminded audiences of the racial tensions going on in their very country, and gave the scene a more creepy atmosphere for audiences since actual acts of violence were going on, and a school-bus was largely connected to all of it.
FINAL THOUGHTS -
I mentioned earlier I did not know who to cheer for and who to be against in "Battle for the Planet of the Apes". - Characters like Aldo and Kolp are both faces of rebellion. Dark faces. Characters like Caesar and MacDonald are the light faces of rebellion. But all four characters are indeed rebels who are against the system, and in most cases, it's always the system that is the true villain. What is the system in the Planet of the Apes films? - Tyranny.
Any kind of tyranny, no matter who is pulling the strings, is wrong. All that live deserve....to indeed live and be free to be who they with to be, and not be repressed all because someone does not understand them.
Hate is a horrible and contagious disease that can spread and scar you forever, and turn you into the very thing you hate. We see an example in the New Black Panther Party and the Black Hebrew Israelites - Their people were so horribly treated that now they too are racist, and desire to enslave White people, not realizing they are only spreading the disease of hate.
Hate must be stopped, and it's up to all of us to be the cure. What makes the world so great I believe is the diversity. I believe the world would be a boring place if we were all the same. And we defeat hate with love, compassion, and understanding.
All and all, I enjoyed "Battle for the Planet of the Apes" very much. It is wonderful, and entertaining. It's full of parables that will appeal and educate the subconscious mind. The film could only hope future generations would learn from the mistakes of the past. As I write this in 2015, I can say that while this country is not nearly as bad as it use to be as far as racial violence goes, we as a society still have some more evolving to do, and the mistakes previous generations made in the past still haunt the here and now, but with each generation, we clearly improve, but I believe and hope that one day, the garden of Eden will rise again.