Monkeying Around with Rise of the Planet of the Apes – Review by Jamie Gilcig – August 12, 2011 – Cornwall Ontario

Cornwall ON –   Yes, I actually bought that Signet paperback book as a young un.   We had this country place in Cumberland Head NY.  Rocky Point community, and while picking up some groceries on a rainy Sunday I grabbed this off the spin rack.   Loved that A&P!   I was hooked and watched all of the Ape films so I was trepidatious about the new Ape flick Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

No Roddy McDowell, no Chuck Heston, no leather outfits.   A producers dream; lots of CGI and no A list stars!

There were a few fun tips of the hat to the Ape movies of lore; a clip of Mr. Heston, the “take your dirty stinking hands off me line” but this movie was different.  It wasn’t like the shiteous one done by Tim Burton and it wasn’t a classic Ape movie.   The sequel promises more than what this flick offered.

James Franco proved to me that the Oscars were no fluke and that he can’t carry a film.  His character is a switch from the one played by Ricardo Montalban in the original series Conquest of the Planet of the Apes.   My friends thought Mr. Franco was terribly good looking, but his acting was a bit….lacking and that was the only drag to this movie.     The CGI monkey out acted most of the cast.

It was nice to see John Lithgow and Brian Cox, and Frieda Pinto spoke a heck of a lot more than Linda Harrison did in the first Ape movie, but what was missing was character.   Character arc is very important for audiences.  We really do need to connect with why a good guy or bad guy is doing what they’re doing.

There were oddly enough no female apes in this flick?  No Kim Hunter balancing things off.    And where did San Francisco get so many Apes from?     I don’t want to give anything away from the movie and our local multi-plex was great.



Would I recommend Rise of the Planet of the Apes?   Sorta yes.   I’m just a sucker for Ape movies.   It wasn’t a bad film.   I’m seeing more and more movies cut so short and fast that they lose a lot of richness.   Character is sacrificed for explosions and how many times can we show this in a day?   I think that’s what’s missing from this flick, but compared to what else is out there it’s worth the ticket.

Planet of the Apes is playing as of this review at The Galaxy theatre in Cornwall Ontario and fine theatres near you!


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