War for the Planet of the Apes (2017)

War for the Planet of the Apes (2017) movie poster

director Matt Reeves
viewed: 07/22/2017 at CineArts @ the Empire Theater, SF, CA

War for the Planet of the Apes is the final in the prequel trilogy, a surprisingly decent threesome of films. Though the creators are apparently discuss additional films in this line, so who knows?

I have to say that this film didn’t quite work for me as well as it has for others. Director Matt Reeves isn’t the least bit subtle in his homages and cultural references. And though Andy Serkis and the technology team do a great job with Caesar, the emotional heft of the story was sort of limited.

The Steve Zahn chimp? The film is very dour and dark, but throwing in a stock comedy character is so Hollywood playbook, I don’t know what to say.  For all the good in it, and it is good, the film shows its weakness in Woody Harrelson’s scene that does all the explication and backstory.

There is a lot to appreciate too, I don’t mean to sound harsh. But I didn’t find it as good or interesting as the others and in trying to tease out why, these are the things that I come upon, clichés and other storytelling weaknesses.


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