Rise of the Planet of the Apes is the prequel to the whole ‘planet-Ape’ franchise: Planet of the Apes (1968), Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970), Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971), Conquest of the Planet of the Apes (1972), Battle for the Planet of the Apes (1973), a remake Planet of the Apes (2001), and this the most recent one – and by far the most expensive. It may be the best of the lost, though most of them are fairly weak, so that’s not saying much.
So this one tells how it all started: the cure for Alzheimer’s gone wrong. You know the drill. Brilliant scientist (James Franco) cutting through the red tape by experimenting on a human subject prematurely. In this case his father who is failing fast from dementia. It works for a while, but then “the drugs effectiveness is outpaced by the antibodies”. Shit happens.
The success in the animal world however is spectacular. Caesar is the leader of the pack and ultimately liberates a whole slew of great apes with the police in hot pursuit. Make sure and catch the credits because there is a clue there showing how we got from there to the original take off point of the whole shebang.
Silly, but entertaining in spots. All the bad guys get their just deserts.