Friday, May 10, 2024

Kingdom Of The Planet Of The Apes

Phew, thank you God!

Good news! Kingdom is a very good follow up to War and is a strong movie on it's own. It actually crosses into the rare territory of a sequel where you don't need to have seen previous installments to get. Set many generation from the ending of War we see apes of a certain clan in particular Noa take up a quest to rescue his family from an invading much more hostile section of apes, along his travels he frequently has run ins with a human named Mae and a wise sage orangutan by the name of Raka who broadens Noa's mind of the before times, before facing off against the king of the coast Paximus Caesar. First and most crucial thing I gotta bring up is the worldbuilding set up here is so interesting and you may find yourself with more questions by the time end credits roll, but I do not see that as a negative. Because the movie is set most likely hundreds of years in the future that gives the filmmakers such a wide sandbox to play with, and the details you are given whether newcomer or experienced viewer is interesting stuff. The fact alone that it's been so long the events of Caesar's life is legend puts it all into perspective. Apes while still vocal in speech still use sign language and are not super fluent in english. Humans who can speak are practically a myth with most more resembling cavemen from the Paleolithic period. The biggest and most fascinating fact to me anyway was just a tidbit of information, that Paximus has been brought up on roman history and so many pieces click together from hearing that! That's worthy of a movie all on it's own, an intelligent ape who is well read in ancient roman history, that has no right to be as cool as it is! And the performances carry so much whether it's Owen Teague as Noa still young and learning but has an iron will, Kevin Durand as Paximus who doesn't fully slip into the tyrant role but clearly he's no good, Freya Allan as Mae has a lot more going on with her than just a slightly more intelligent human, and Peter Macon selling me once again on why the orangutans are my favorite of the subspecies carrying a lot of history and wisdom with good bits of humor as well. Obviously the visuals have not degraded since War, you get a lot more emphasis on environments both natural and dilapidated human structures and it all looks mighty good. I feel the emotional connection while it can't match the intensity of the last two films can easily be built upon for our new cast, I do want to see where this could go and I was wondering how was this movie going to end. I figured they would try for a continuation but also could have seen the movie end relatively contained. It's pretty good, I'd rank it between Rise and Dawn which is already damn good company to be within, and you can either catch it this weekend or pick it up on video in the future depending on how sold you are on this now continuing saga. I give it 3.5 stars, 7.5/10, and the work is coming along for next week with one show down and one to go.

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