Muscat Daily - - FEATURES -

Direc­tor Matt Reeves con­structs the con­flicts of the hu­man heart in an evan­gel­i­cal spi­ral. There is more than a dash of ec­cle­si­as­ti­cal ex­hil­a­ra­tion in the ape-hero Cae­sar’s jour­ney from ir­re­deemable loss to hard-earned re­demp­tion. The jour­ney is so well-charted by the bril­liant screen­play (by Mark Bom­back, Matt Reeves) that the vis­ual man­i­fes­ta­tion of the writ­ten words be­comes a faith­ful ren­di­tion of im­ages that must have seemed nigh-im­pos­si­ble to put on screen.

For those fa­mil­iar with the Planet Of The Apes se­ries, Cae­sar’s pained jour­ney across an epic land­scape to avenge the mur­der of his wife and son, would seem like a rou­tine vendetta saga where hu­man be­ing are re­placed by apes. Woody Har­rel­son, plays the rene­gade army of­fi­cer, sim­ply called the Colonel. The moral con­flicts be­tween Cae­sar and the Colonel are riv­et­ing not only be­cause of the thought pro­vok­ing dis­course on the de­struc­tion of civil­i­sa­tion but also be­cause the two ac­tors ar­gue their points of view with dis­con­cert­ing con­vic­tion.

Both Andy Serkis and Woody Har­rel­son lend a pow­er­ful ten­abil­ity to their roles, pitch­ing the metaphor of Good and Evil at a deci­bel where their voices res­onate across the cos­mic order. The nar­ra­tive revels in height­ened emo­tions and drama. The char­ac­ters are not ashamed to shed tears at the de­struc­tion of civil­i­sa­tion. The film’s mag­nif­i­cent maudlin­ism is a great en­ergy booster for the plot. Mag­i­cally the sad­ness that we carry af­ter the film, en­er­gises our moral val­ues and re­news our faith in hu­man kind.

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