So, here we are. In the most likely scenario, War for the Planet of the Apes connects the classic and modern franchises, meaning we aren’t going to get any more films unless another reboot is on the way. So, really, they had a lot of responsibility on their shoulders to make this a great end to the series as well as believably connect the last film to the first film back in the ’60s. Big shoes to fill, if you ask me. Could they do it? Did they do it? Let’s get into it, starting with the plot.
Caesar and his apes are forced into a deadly conflict with an army of humans led by a ruthless Colonel. After the apes suffer unimaginable losses, Caesar wrestles with his darker instincts and begins his own mythic quest to avenge his kind. As the journey finally brings them face to face, Caesar and the Colonel are pitted against each other in an epic battle that will determine the fate of both their species and the future of the planet. – 20th Century Fox
There’s a lot to love about this film. The first thing you should know is that this movie isn’t really what you would expect, especially with that title. Th war in question refers to a double meaning of the word. Yes, there is an all-out war going on, but that’s not truly what this film about, nor is it the focus. Instead, what the war is mostly referring to is an internal one fueled by revenge and hatred. I can’t really divulge any more information, as that would spoil some pretty major plot points. Past that, I will say that the film does an incredible job answering some pretty major questions for the classic series that were never answered. Those answers really helped the two series merge into one, which is pretty great.
These are just my first impressions, though. Let’s go ahead and break down War for the Planet of the Apes to interpret the stars!
TITLE – War for the Planet of the Apes
Year – 2017
Genres – Action, Drama, Sci-Fi
Possible Awards – Sequel, Visuals
PEOPLE SCORE – 10/10
Acting – 2|Characters – 2|Casting – 2|Importance – 2|Chemistry – 2
First up, we have the people category, starting off with the subcategory of acting, and thankfully, the acting was noticeably great. These characters were diverse, unique, and most importantly, memorable. I am convinced that nobody else can play these characters. They are perfect for these roles. Absolutely every character in this film seemingly had an important role adding to the direction of the plot, I was impressed. They had a reason, they had a purpose, they had a history, and I love it. Everyone in this film really worked well together. Their chemistry was off the charts.
WRITING SCORE – 9/10
Dialogue – 2|Balanced – 1|Story – 2|Originality – 2|Interesting – 2
Next up, we have the writing category, starting off with the dialogue, which was actually really well thought out. There’s a lot of memorable lines, and just the way people speak is hard to forget. Now, this film isn’t as well-balanced as it could’ve easily been. It loses its own focus here and there, making the film feel a little bit longer than it should normally feel. When it comes to the story, this film knows what it’s doing. Not only is the story alone interesting, but it sticks with you because it has meaning and purpose. In my opinion, I also think this film feels fresh and pretty darn original. Was this movie interesting? Of course it was, don’t be silly. I was all-in for this one.
BTS SCORE – 9/10
Visuals – 2|Directing – 2|Editing – 1|Advertisement – 2|Music – 2
Next up, we’re taking a look behind-the-scenes, starting with the visuals, and the visuals were pretty darn great here. Somebody knew what they were doing. The director actually did a really good job here. Completely based off of what they did, the movie looks and feels great and authentic on a different level. Well done! Nothing challenging or difficult in the editor’s desk, folks. They stitched the movie together just fine, but there’s nothing else to report here because even a kid could probably do it. As with most films, I consider this film to be exactly as advertised, which is good. This doesn’t happen often, but I’m awfully glad when it does. The music in this film is pretty fantastic. So good, in fact, that I really wouldn’t mind listening to a soundtrack of the film just to hear them again. Yep, yep, yep!
NARRATIVE ARC SCORE – 10/10
Introduction – 2|Inciting Incident – 2|Obstacles – 2|Climax – 2|Falling Action – 2
Next up, we’re chugging right along into the narrative arc category, which is one of the easiest categories to score highly in. First up, we’re looking at the introduction, which did perfectly. By the inciting incident, we knew who everyone was, the basic setting, and what’s going on in these people’s lives. How about the inciting incident? That was perfectly clear and set the rest of the film up for a good ride. How were the obstacles? Totally fine. There were plenty of clear obstacles in the way, just as you’d come to expect. How was the climax? The climax was perfect. It felt like a perfect culmination of everything else put together, just as it should. Lastly, we’re gonna talk about the falling action, which was really great. It had a nice little calming down moment and a definite returning to a new norm moment as well, so that’s good.
ENTERTAINMENT SCORE – 10/10
Rewatchability – 2|Fun – 2|Impulse/Buy – 2|Impusle/Talk – 2|Sucks Audience IN – 2
Next up, we’re asking if this film is any good to be considered entertaining when all is said and done. First up, we ask if it is rewatchable, to which I say…yes! I would have no issues checking out this movie again! Is this a film I would consider fun while watching? Oh yeah, absolutely. Whatever technical problems the movie may or may not have, it is definitely fun, and that’s something no one can take away from it. Is this a film I would consider buying? Totally, I would love to buy this movie! What about talking to somebody about the film that hasn’t heard of it? Oh, totally. People need to know this movie exists, even if they only watch it the one time. Does this suck you in, though? Oh, definitely. I never once had a problem getting lured into everything that was happening in this film.
SPECIALTY SCORE – 50/50
Action/War – 10|Drama – 10|Sequel – 10|Franchise – 10|Halfway Decent – 10
Now, we move onto the specialty questions I asked before seeing the movie. First of all, I wanted to know about the action of the film, or the war in question. Before seeing the film, I had my own idea of what that would be and I was wrong; furthermore, I am happy I was wrong. This isn’t a film that should be easily predicted. Even though we know how things will ultimately turn out because of the first film decades ago, but we don’t know what turns they will take to make it there, and I liked the route they took. The action and war in this film, like I mentioned before, were personal and I love it. Next, can this potentially explosive final film in a trilogy have enough drama to get full points for that genre? Totally. There are enough moments here to warrant that. Next up, I wanted to know how this fit in with the franchise and if it added anything as a sequel. In both instances, it worked out better than expected. The things they added for the sequel are the very things that helped it feel more and more like Planet of the Apes. Full points on both counts. Finally, is it halfway decent? You kidding? Of course.
TOTAL – 98/100
Score # – 199