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The West Wing
PLANET OF THE APES, 2001
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Tim Roth, Helena Bonham Carter and Paul Giamatti
Tim Burton’s remake of the 1968 film of the same name sees Mark Wahlberg as an astronaut who is sent into the distant future where Apes rule over an enslaved human race.
This film is a classy remake of a classic film, I won’t deny that it got its flaws, but the originality and creativity far outweigh any of the negatives. In some cases elements of this film are both good and bad at the same time!
Leaving the original film aside for a moment, Tim Burton’s ‘Planet of the Apes’ really is a very original and entertaining film. Whilst the story does leave you asking some questions, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. And allegedly a lot of the questions would have been answered in a sequel. Which I for one wish they had made. But alas they are rebooting now instead.
Set in the not too distant, but highly advanced, future, Captain Leo Davidson (Mark Wahlberg) is aboard a space station; their mission is to train apes to pilot space shuttles. This is very frustrating for Captain Leo as he wants to fly a shuttle.
A massive electromagnetic spatial anomaly approaches the station and Captain Leo’s favourite chimp, Pericles, is sent in to scout out the situation. When Pericles loses contact with the station, Captain Leo breaks regulations and orders to go in after him. The storm sends Leo hundreds of years into the future, where he discovers that the world is now ruled by apes. Humans are enslaved by the apes who live in a quasi-primitive society.
From here Leo struggles for his freedom and the freedom of all humans as well as struggling to discover what exactly happened to create this Planet of the Apes.
Now let’s hit this straight on, it’s not as good as the original, but what remake is. But there are some ways in which it has to be admitted that this version is superior to the original. The make-up is amazing and truly does bring the characters to life. Unlike in the original where the actors’ muzzles moved only slightly when they talked and hung open most of the time when they were not talking. The make-up the actors in the remake wore was so good it moved with every facial movement.
The special effects in general are of course better as now we have CG effects and no longer do people have to build massive statues of Liberty. Although the sets are pretty detailed, as with all Tim Burton films extra care has been taken for the artistic look of the film and it really does a lot for the film.
But what it does lack is the killer ending that the original had. It has its own twist but it’s nowhere near as good or even as dramatic as the original. Nor does it wrap everything up, which isn’t always that bad, but this is one of those times that it is pretty rubbish. I think this is because this film was intended to reboot the franchise and that didn’t end up happening.
Anyway I still recommend this film if you are a fan of the original franchise or if you are a fan of Tim Burton’s work or if you are even a fan of Mark Wahlberg’s ‘acting’.
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