Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is the next film in sequence. It’s another remake of the earlier films.

Dreyfus (Gary Oldman – Harry Potter) leads a gang of humans to fight the apes, who are led by Caesar (Andy Serkis – Lord of the Rings). Caesar was in the last film, now he leads a group of apes living in the forest.

It was very dark and dismal. The sets were very grim, as humanity has been battered by some type of virus. Only those immune to it have lived. Cities are run down and there’s not much order about. The tone was very downbeat.

The humans need a water pump thing, which is in ape territory, and now things are so tense that they cannot enter. There’s already been one incident where an ape has been shot by a human.

Things didn’t improve in the ape camp, bickering and fighting between Caesar and Koba (Toby Kebbel) gets worse. It reaches boiling point when Koba attacks Caesar and tries to frame the humans, this inciting the war needed for the apes to destroy humans and have their dawn!

I saw the some of the early Planet of the Apes films and preferred them. It wasn’t all doom and gloom, people and apes living in run down cities, ready to fight at a moments notice.

I did like the home footage included from the previous film where Caesar was growing up. However, although Malcolm (Jason Clark) and Elle (Keri Russell) were good as the couple out to befriend the apes, the events were far too glum for them to lift the spirits.

Films like this do so much damage to the image of apes, yes they have a savage streak but they wouldn’t survive in the wild if they didn‘t. The animal kingdom can be rich and lively – but it contains a deadliness.

I felt this film centred far too much, on what was bad. Even the ending for me did not dispel the horror of the implications. This is where there’s too much CGI and the script suffers for it.

5/10 from me. A tale mismanaged from the start. Tales of the future should inspire not deflate!

Image reproduced from Ronerds.com
Trailer reproduced from Fresh Movie Trailers

Film Review: Robocop 2014

Robocop 2014
Robocop 2014 is a remake of the 1987 film, where Peter Weller played the title role. It was directed by Paul Verhoeven

This new take on the tale is directed by José Padilha. With Joel Kinnaman’s turn to play the cyborg cop.

There are quite a few differences in the story but a fair bit has stayed the same too. Alex Murphy (Kinnaman) is nearly killed by a car bomb, planted to take him out. He was closing in on the corrupt network of police officers dealing with a local gun merchant Antoine Vallon.

Dr Dennett Norton selects Alex to become the cyborg Robocop, after the first few selections were unsatisfactory. Norton has been asked by Raymond Sellars head of Omnicorp to make a cyborg, as he cannot yet put a complete robot model on American soil. An act being upheld by the Senate denying fully AI robots for deployment.

After a few possible are selected they are not ‘desirable’ enough for Sellars to proceed. Interim Alex’s planted car bomb goes off, he is badly injured and might die. He gets the attention of Dr Norton who thinks he is a good match for the cyborg program.

His wife must agree to the procedure or watch him die. So she accepts the operation. The only things left of Alex is his hand, lungs and head. One eye has a computer chip. As he’s mostly robotic, the term Robocop is apt.

This movie was simply great for me. It has emotion, depth and politics. All very intriguing. Joel Kinnaman was great, playing Alex as a person and as a robot, you saw the change. Can the man remain inside the machine? Can his humanity survive or will the computers override him?

Michael Keaton did an impressive turn has the villainous head of OmniCorp CEO Raymond Sellars , he made me think at times – was he the real villain? Where did the good intentions go wrong? Do heads of companies do what they do for improvement or money? Are they tied to what, we as consumers, will buy? Are they forced into dark decisions because they need to match a product to demand?

It isn’t long before Robocop is called to bring the people who tried to kill him to justice. More twists and turns ensure this is not boring. A fabulous movie. A reboot that brings new dimensions to the franchise rather than alter everything because it’s ‘new’.

I know a lot of people may not like the human emotion scenes being played out or that Robocop has a lot of interaction with his wife and son; which I don’t think those were present in the original. But I felt they made him more of a 3D character.

A well deserved 9/10 from me.

Image reproduced from wikipedia.com
Trailer reproduced from CBMTrailers