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Showing 1-10 of 436 reviews(4 star, Verified Purchases). See all 2,379 reviews
on July 21, 2014
Rise of the Planet of the Apes is a coming of age for the franchise. Essentially starring James Franco and motion capture go to man Andy Serkis, it is a very creative look at how we treat sentient beings who are different from "us", whoever the word us represents. Clever in its representation of how we treat whom we think is inferior, who we think needs protection, who we think we need to help.
Franco is Will Rodman, a scientist experimenting with a drug to help Alzheimer's patients, who creates a serum that begins to give the ape, Bright Eyes, amazing cognitive skills, for an ape. After a violent episode the experiment is scrapped, but Dr Rodman discovers and takes in Caesar, Bright Eyes's male offspring. Caesar proves to be a very special simian, and Rodman is a sort of pet owner/parent to the surprisingly intelligent Caesar. As Caesar grows, he starts to question his place in the world. I found the small scene of Caesar's encounter with a leashed German Shepherd most telling. Caesar notices an aggressive dog's leash and collar, then touches his own collar. We know Caesar has a collar to protect him from humans who won't understand a loose ape in a park, but Caesar asks if he is a pet. And from all he sees, he begins to notice he is not the same as his caretaker and the people in his life. It is from here that Caesar discovers where he belongs and begins a road to freedom that is fast paced and exciting.
Caesar's coming of age is superb story telling utilizing amazing special effects, and Andy Serkis's motion capture acting carry the story. It is excellent fantasy with a meaningful connection to our world today, and it is how great science fiction should be. This a great set up for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes- a super movie in itself.
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on October 11, 2013
Given that most of the sequels to the original Charlton Heston "Planet of the Apes," a chance was taken in ordering this film. Surprise, surprise... it was actually... good! Ah, yes, there are some who may quibble about some of the "science" behind the aromatic infection of the apes themselves, following the lead of the.. well, lead ape, but the cinematics were extremely well done. The apes in films of this genre in the past seemed to lack that human quality present with these lead animals... and, they performed extremely well under the adept direction of Rupert Wyatt. Lithgow's performance was also well handled by this lead character actor, as his mental state rose and fell with the script. What can truly make a movie is to watch those in supporting casts... one expects finished performances from the lead actors, and, unfortunately, many in this category are without merit in some of the latest films. The neighbor is played well, with the correct amount of angst and anger. The extras were obviously were not simply told to mill about... they were, or so it appears, actually directed and added the flavor of confusion, threat avoidance, horror and fear. This is a good, solid flick and one of its most outstanding elements was the lack of animal violence committed upon the duplicitous, dippy humans... unless, of course, the latter were involved in the slaying of apes, baboons, orangutans and the like. If they did, then they paid the price. One of the letdowns were the scenes involving the California Highway Patrol and their high flying chopper... I simply could not believe they were that stupid or given orders by someone who was not involved as an officer with their agency. All in all, a better film than one might have expected... just make certain you have plenty of bananas on hand if the going gets rough.
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on March 4, 2014
WOW! I saw the first trailers and immediately thought not to see it so it wouldn't ruin the classic original, but I was really wrong. I've always been a fan of James Franco, though there are few, and always wished he'd get the recognition I thought he deserved. He beautifully did "127 Hours," which was sad, deep, and a wonderful movie, but it simply didn't have the right demographics. This move, however, appeals to all kinds of viewers, and in doing so, earns a good bit of dough and a good movie to watch a few times. The CGI is pretty good, for the sci-fi guys, and the acting was really well done. Though Andy Serkis is "the man behind the mask," playing Caesar, I really like him. He's played Smeagle/Golemn, King Kong in Peter Jackson's version, and now Caesar. With him comes a certain familiarity of the creature no one really understands, but is always looming above them. Obviously, without Caesar, there would be no movie (or a really bad planet of the apes with no apes), but I think he sort of made the movie for me. Anyway, I do believe that this film was really well done and is absolutely worth watching.
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on July 10, 2017
Good- unbelievable animation/graphics/CGI- however the apes were done!
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on July 21, 2017
with a great cast and great effects Rise of the Planet of the Apes shows that this will be a great franchise. Though it is only a good set up and not nearly as good as it's sequel Dawn I still recommend this film
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on August 5, 2014
If I had rated this movie when it came out in 2011, I would have given it 5 stars. But now that I have seen "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes", this movie has been demoted to 4 stars. There is nothing wrong with this movie; this is a great movie. But part of the reason it was an AMAZING movie in 2011 is because CGI apes doing ape things was unique. We had never seen anything in cinema like it before. With the release of "Dawn of the planet of the apes", audiences can see CGI apes taken to the next level. So when going back to "Rise of the planet of the apes" for a re-watch, the CGI ape novelty is gone, and only the story and characters remain. So though this movie is great, it is certainly not 5 stars.
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on June 24, 2014
The CGI is good, the action is cool, the movie is fun to watch. But I thought in the originals apes either revolted because they had evolved to be man's domestic servants and slaves. Or man wiped himself out first and then the apes evolved. This movie offers a modern short cut to all that. I am sure it is the best of all the later PotA movies. Still love the first one with Heston though. Damn dirty apes!
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on December 13, 2016
Rise of the Planet of the Apes is the first of the reboot films for this venerable franchise that shows how a scientist's desire to make a cure for mental deterioration had unforeseen consequences for apes and humans alike! The special effects that bring this story to life are astounding and only get better as the series progresses. Try to see this film and NOT root at least once for Caesar and the other primates striving for identity and independence. Protip: You can't!
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on August 9, 2016
My movie reviews ultimately let you decide if movie is good or not. All I want to share is that I did enjoy this movie, the CG was good and it was better than most of the recent POA movies.
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on July 14, 2013
"Rise of the Planet of the Apes" is a decent movie - it's exactly what you'd expect; no more and no less. The performances are just fine (John Lithgow is a standout), and the performance capture work for Caesar (a fantastic Andy Serkis) and the other apes is emotive and convincing. There are some nice touches, such as when Caesar communicates with another captured ape through sign language. Little touches like that and attention to detail elevate this far above the diminishing returns of the original Apes sequels...and probably caused me to raise my rating from three stars to four. The narrative isn't surprising, though. Just your typical "well-intentioned scientist plays 'God,' results run amok" story. The title pretty much gives it away...

Amazon's streaming presentation of the film was fine - the HD presentation was crisp and clear, and I didn't have any problems with loading times or pixelation. The presentation did seem a little too smooth - there was no film grain that I could see, but that may have been a result of the original production. Entertaining and worthwhile viewing for a rainy afternoon.
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