Battle for the Planet of the Apes (1973)


Dave’s 3-Word Review:
Nothing good here.

This film was selected from ‘The 250’

Sometimes it’s just not difficult to understand why a series ends where it ends. From all across the board, Battle for the Planet of the Apes makes sense as a final film in both good ways and bad. Unfortunately, most of those reasons are in fact bad. At first, you just think this film is unnecessary, but it gets worse than that. It’s unnecessary and executed improperly for what they did do. We’ll get to that in a bit, but let’s first talk about the plot.

The last film was actually one of the best, as it shows the actual rise of the apes, which is incredibly important for the series. It also had some great performances all around, but by the time it ended, you feel as if that really should have been the last one, because you can use your imagination on where they go from there. But no, here we’ve got a sequel, complete with the most ludicrous plot. To make it brief – the apes rule, but it takes place sometime before the first film when both humans and apes spoke alike.  When Caesar wishes to see a video of his parents made in the third film, he goes back to the bombed city and runs into a bunch of mutated humans, who don’t like the fact that they trespassed, and thus ensues a war between the races.

Here’s why this film is bad in a nutshell: after the apes rise to power, our mind is smart enough to fill in the spaces between films. They came to power, and gained the upper hand needed to rule the planet. Great. This film was…I don’t even get it. The war was all started because Caesar wanted to watch a video of his folks…and then it had the beginnings of those mutant humans that live underground…it was just a really pointless war. The movie itself was pointless, don’t get me wrong, but they could have at least made a better story, seriously. There is nothing remotely interesting about this film. I wasn’t expecting it to be so bad, but I’m disappointed.

On the other hand, I’m glad they at least attempted to have the series come full circle, explaining everything. There were some things we didn’t need explanations of, though, like the really dumb mutant people. Keep them locked away in the second worst film in the franchise.

Our mind is a tricky thing. It can easily connect dots, but can only guess at what the next dot itself will be. That’s why we want a sequel to Rise of the Planet of the Apes, but didn’t want this. We already knew where this series was headed, but the re-imagining is technically a new series and we don’t exactly know where it’s heading. So two very similar movies, one needs a sequel badly, the other didn’t need one at all.

You know what I’m mostly upset about beyond what I already stated? The classic series just began having a really dark tone, something it really needed. It actually was the only film in the franchise to get a PG rating, while the rest are just G. Back then that doesn’t mean much, but slinking back to G for the final film is honestly kind of pathetic. The dark tone is gone, the performances suck again…it seems really forced all around. If you were me, I’d stay away from this one, guys. You can watch the whole series and be happy without seeing this one. Just saying.

The Good:

Refer to my 3-Word Review

The Bad:


One thought on “Battle for the Planet of the Apes (1973)

  1. Funny you should mention the rating system. So much about it has changed over the years. What’s PG nowadays was included in the G rating back then while G is pretty much reserved for the tamest kiddie flicks.


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