Review: Rise of the Planet of the Apes

My girlfriend and I had great fun watching this, and I have no hesitation in recommending it as the basis for a fun evening at the cinema. Admittedly, a lot of my own fun came from deeving my geneticist other-half afterwards whether human-ape hybrids were biologically feasible.

Rise of the Apes charts the origin of the story many will know, about a planet where humans and apes end up with their role reversed. The movie it is intended as a prequel to the story in general, with an illustration of how apes came to take over the world with developed, heightened intelligence. The story revolves around Caesar, a chimpanzee who develops exceptional intelligence following his mother’s exposure to a pinoeering Alzheimers drug. The story charts his development, growing up with scientist Will Rodman (James Franco), and his ultimate rebellion against human authority.

Franco’s acting is pretty decent, though he won’t be winning any oscars for this one I don’t think. As with many films aimed at a younger audience, his character is one-dimensionally good, contrasted with money grabbing boss Jacobs (David Oyelowo) and heartess John Landon (Brian Cox) who mistreats his simian charges at the ape refuge. Naturally, you find yourself siding with the apes.

It’s an entertaining film, with plenty of action and a novel take on an old story.