Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes Image

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes

By Alan Ng | May 8, 2024

For fans of the rebooted Caesar trilogy in the Planet of the Apes series, it’s time to take a deep breath and start a brand new chapter in Wes Ball’s Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes. Caesar is dead, and the world has fast-forwarded in time for several generations. Apes have evolved rapidly in intelligence, and man has grown dumber and lost the ability to speak. Humans are essentially animals grazing the field.

The apes have splintered off into their own factions primarily based on species. Our tale follows a troop of Chimpanzees who have established their own village and raised and trained eagles to hunt for food, such as fish. Noa (Owen Teague) is the son of the troop’s old and wise leader, Koro (Neil Sandilands). His best friends are the fearful Anaya (Travis Jeffery) and his crush, Soona (Lydia Peckem).

Life in the village changes forever when the troop is attacked by the evil gorilla, Proximus Caesar (Kevin Durand), and his men. The result is all of the troop’s leaders, including Koro, are killed. Trying to protect his father, Noa is quickly defeated and left for dead. The rest of the troop, including Anaya, Soona, and Noa’s mother, Dar (Sara Wiseman), are rounded up as slaves.

“Apes have evolved rapidly in intelligence, and man has grown dumber…”

Determined to free his people, Noa goes on a journey to take down Proximus. He is joined by the wise orangutan Raka (Peter Macon), who is the last keeper of the legend that was Caesar, and a human animal, Nova (Freya Allan). The three must work together to find Noa’s troop…except Proximus is hunting Nova himself, and the trio’s movements are under a watchful and sinister eye.

I actually enjoyed Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes…at least for the first two acts. The final act, I predict, will be the center of discussions and arguments once everyone has seen it. I was OK with the ending, but I know many people will hate it.

I hate heavily CG movies or what I call live-action cartoons. That said, WETA builds a beautiful world of the Apes that blends CG-motion-captured actors seamlessly into natural environments. Everything about this movie is beautiful and exceptional, and the primate characters are meticulously built and animated to look as real as you can get. I wish other movies put out by Disney followed their newly captured Fox production and applied this amount of excellence to their storytelling.

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes (2024)

Directed: Web Ball

Written: Josh Friedman

Starring: Owen Teague, Freya Allan, Kevin Durand, Peter Macon, Lydia Peckham, Neil Sandilands, William H. Macy, Travis Jeffery, etc.

Movie score: 6.5/10

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes Image

"…I'll say this about the third act. It goes crazy town."

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