Movie Talk,  MovieMuse Reviews by Erin

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes (2024) – On the whole, we have enjoyed the new prequel series of movies for the Planet of the Apes franchise. The first two, Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014) were definitely the best, though the third one – War for the Planet of the Apes (2017) had some nice moments. But Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes felt a little off. It’s possible that this perception is simply due to the time jump and the lack of Andy Serkis/Caesar in the film, who has always been such an amazing and compelling presence. I also very much like director Matt Reeves, and I think the absence of his distinct style and “touch” that was clearly evident in the previous two films (he did not direct the first one) also hurt the film. And I am incredibly annoyed that they revealed one particularly key detail during the previews/commercials! That *never* should have been known until it occurred in the movie. (If you’re a fan of the series, including the original, then you can probably guess what I mean.)

Please do not get me wrong, Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes is a perfectly decent movie. I’ve seen many that were far worse! (Like the terrible 2001 Planet of the Apes; please do yourself a favor and pretend that one doesn’t exist.) But by the same token, this movie was merely… fine. There wasn’t anything especially distinctive or compelling about it, and it felt like they were trying too hard in a few places. It makes me wonder if they really can keep it going until it “comes full circle” and connects up with the original 1969 movie. In my opinion, they’ve been doing okay so far and heading in the right direction, but they need to hurry up and get there (probably in the next movie, IMO) before the whole thing comes crashing down like a spaceship from the distant past.

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