Worst to First: Ranking the Planet of the Apes movies
1. Planet of the Apes (1968)
RT Score: 90%
Box Office: $32,589,624 (#4)
BO (Adjusted for Inflation): $219,917,800 (#3)
McDowall or Serkis: McDowall
Summary: As good as the new Apes movies are, there’s no topping the original. At the time, the set design and make-up effects were astounding. They are still impressive today, but the reason the movie holds up is that it tells a terrific story. Charlton Heston stars as an astronaut who lands on a planet where humans are subservient to talking apes. He suffers all kinds of indignities as he rails against an ape society that parallels our own.
The original Planet of the Apes could be enjoyed as a straight-up sci-fi adventure. But what makes it stand out is the social commentary on war, science, religion, social justice and race relations. By masking the movie in simian make-up, Planet of the Apes was able to deal with all kinds of lightning rod issues which are still controversial today much less in 1968. The twist ending is just the coup de grace topping off a near-perfect science fiction story.
The series is unlikely to ever match the greatness of the original. But it’s really impressive that nine movies in, so many entries in the franchise are worth watching. With the exception of the Burton remake, even the worst movies in the series are worth checking out if you’re a fan.
Posted on July 14, 2017, in Movies, Worst to First and tagged Andy Serkis, charlton heston, james franco, Kim Hunter, Mark Wahlberg, planet of the apes, roddy mcdowall. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.