August 3rd, 2001


Planet of the Apes

I was kinda frustrated in USA due to the fact that "Planet of the Apes" opened July 27, and I were going home July 26. Tim Burton has been a big favorite all the way since "Beetlejuice", and.. heck.. my cat is even named Edward Scissorpaws..
I feared that it would take long before it opened in Sweden.. Sometimes, it can take some 3 or 4 months for movies to get to this part of the world. But I were kinda relieved when it had European premiere in Sweden and opened already August 1, and I saw it yesterday.
Kinda hard to say, actually.. Weren't that satisfied with it. If it's because of the movie, or because of my expectations, I don't know.. I thought I wouldn't have that high expectations, but.. it's hard to know if you have or not, really. One fact that should bring it down, is that Tim Burton himself, if you read between the lines, aren't the most happy about the movie, with too much studio control involved. Obviously, the studio hopes to create a new series of planet of the apes movies.. 2 or 3 of them, and if they throw some $100 million to make a movie, they sure want it to be.. well.. "safe".

As for the movie. It sure looks great, which is the least one could expect from a Tim Burton movie today. With a budget of 100 million and a lot of those going into the Ape-suits, you can't expect less than perfect "apes". I'm not entirely happy with the Gorillas that much tho.. I don't know. They kinda doesn't look like Gorillas. Then Helena Bonham Carter.. Well.. she's really cute in real life, as well as an ape, but the problem is.. they haven't dared making her an ape. She is on the humans side, and a love interest, and maybe because of that, more looks like a cross between ape and human. While the bad guy/ape, is the most ape-like creature in the movie.

As for the story. Well, what $100 million movie today has a story? In fact, the more a movie costs, the less story it seems to have. Probably because with those big movies, they try selling a concept rather than a movie.
Planet of the Apes is no exception. It's strangely straight. He crashes, then he makes some allies in his attempt to get off the planet again. The main idea behind the movie, the general theme, is an allegory on the colonisation in the name of Christ some 100 - 500 years ago, with the stealing of land from the American Indians etc, but that's something that, in the movie, happens just a little on the side of the general action. Instead it spends more time by cheap humour trying to show human characteristics in apes, intended to make us laugh everytime we reckognize a human behaviour in the monkeys, as they have toupés, say grace at dinner etc..

In the end, it's a movie that's too streamlined for it's own best. You're able to see it, without suffering too much, but.. it's basically only spending 2 hrs of time, nothing more.
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