by Roy Runnels
Special coupon for Dinuba Platinum Theatre at the end of this review.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes isn’t what you would call a typical sequel. When you see a sequel to Iron Man you have a general idea of what you’re going to get. Not so with Dawn. Dawn would be the equivalent of taking a film like Mean Girls, and making the sequel a horror movie. That’s how vastly different the two Apes movies are from one another. Where Rise of the Planet of the Apes was a slow build to a huge climax, Dawn begins with its foot on the gas and it never lets up.
It’s extremely difficult to discuss Dawn without giving away spoilers, so I’m going to tread very lightly on the subject matter. The only characters that were in the previous film are all apes. There is Caesar, played by the amazing Andy Serkis, who is not only the proud leader of the apes, but easily the main character. We got to see plenty of back story in Rise, but in Dawn we get to fully explore the emotional depth of the character. The other standout is Koba, played in this film by Toby Kebbell, and comes incredibly close to dethroning Serkis as best motion capture actor. Just as a refresher, Koba was experimented on by humans in the first film, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that he’s not exactly the most trusting. The way Serkis and Kebbell play off of each other is wonderful, and I loved seeing the chain of command of the apes.
I haven’t mentioned the human characters yet, and there is a reason for that. It’s not that they are terrible, the characters are actually great, I just want to make it clear that this movie is about the apes. The main characters are apes, and it just wouldn’t be right not to give credit where it is due. That said, the human characters are fantastic as well. Something that should be known is, unlike what all the trailers and ads make you think, Gary Oldman isn’t the main human character. In fact, his character is in maybe 15 minutes of the whole film. The actual main human is Malcolm, played by Jason Clarke. It’s a wonderful character, and has some of the best scenes with Caesar.
One last thing before I wrap this up. It’s not required to have seen Rise of the Planet of the Apes to see Dawn, but I highly recommend it. Seeing where the apes started really helps see where they are coming from in some decisions they make. I can’t wait to see where the franchise is heading, and I will definitely be lining up to see any future sequels.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is currently playing at Dinuba Platinum Theatres 6. Showtimes can be found on their website. Platinum Theaters Dinuba 6 now proudly presents digital quality films in 2-D and 3-D with 5.1 Dolby digital surround sound to maximize your movie experience.