Worst to First: Ranking the Planet of the Apes movies

2. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014)

RT Score: 90%

Box Office: $208,545,589 (#1)

BO (Adjusted for Inflation): $228,127,100 (#2)

McDowall or Serkis: Serkis

Summary: Things get complicated in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.  Humanity is down, but they are not out.  Caesar just wants to be able to live in peace with his fellow apes but his leadership faces threats both from remaining humans and within his own community.  It turns out that things aren’t as simple as just man vs. ape.  While both sides strive for peace, there are forces pushing for inevitable war.  Although the apes seemingly have the upper hand (the title provides a clue as to the conflict’s eventual outcome), Caesar knows that war comes with costs even if you win.

There was little reason to hope that a sequel could build on the better-than-it-should-have-been Rise.  But Dawn managed to be a crowd-pleasing spectacle with a brain and a beating heart.  Once again, the new movies exceeded expectations.  And based on the reviews for War of the Planet of the Apes (which again I haven’t seen) it sounds like the new movie raises the bar again.  Where the original series was a case study in steady decline, the new movies have shown continued improvement which is an extremely rare thing.

Next: Planet of the Apes


Posted on July 14, 2017, in Movies, Worst to First and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Planet of the Apes – Sequels/ Reboots

    A speed review of all the Planet of the Apes sequels/reboots.

    We’re going ape about Planet of the Apes! The crew sit down to discuss the original Planet of the Apes series. We ran out of time, so we couldn’t discuss Tim Burton’s relaunch. We did a little mini review, but we had some technical issues, so we’ll need to re-tape it again in the near future.


    • Every Planet Of The Apes Movie Ranked From Worst To Best

      Which one is king of the apes?

      A triumphant Planet of the Apes reboot trilogy has just come to a close.

      Less than a decade ago, the notion of such a thing existing was utterly bananas, but they did it. They reinvented a dormant franchise and helped it reclaim its crown.

      Prior to the release of 2011’s surprisingly good Rise of the Planet of the Apes, the world hadn’t seen a competent new addition to the series in decades, so what Caesar and his CG simian army have achieved is remarkable.

      Despite the franchise’s woes over the years, the Charlton Heston original remains a classic, but with a stellar new trilogy to compete with, how does it stack up in 2017?

      And where does Tim Burton’s ill-advised attempt to remake it rank on a list of movies which has swelled to nine entries since the turn of the decade?

      Battle For The Planet Of The Apes (1973)

      This was one battle too many for the Planet of the Apes and it left an ugly scar on the face of the series for years to come.

      A slashed budget was Battle For The Planet Of The Apes’ worst enemy and the results made its simian masks and costumes look like something from the bottom of the bargain bin at a backstreet fancy dress store.

      This is a shame, because Battle is one of the most ambitious installments, daring to take things a shade darker by having the apes face off against an army of post-apocalyptic humans (or the closest thing to them the FX resources would allow).

      The subtext about the value of freedom and equality is in place and series mainstay Roddy McDowall is as reliable as ever in the role of Ceasar, but he’s about the only thing in the movie that is convincing.

      The large-scale conflict the series was building towards goes off with a whimper, and the photography and editing reek of cut corners.

      Rounding off the original series, Battle paid out in chimp change.


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