8 Reasons Why “War for the Planet of the Apes” is the Best Sequel of 2017 (So Far)

By Bennett Ferguson

In the eerie opening scene of Matt Reeves’ wonderful new film “War for the Planet of the Apes,” a pack of human soldiers hides in a forest, waiting to attack a group of horse-riding apes who look strange, even menacing, from a distance. Yet from harrowing start to moist-eyed finish, “War” draws us close to its highly evolved title characters, daring us to look into their eyes and declare that they’re less civilized, cunning, and compassionate than we are.

Typically, sequels don’t dare audiences to do anything besides sit back and stare at stale, zombified genre tropes. But 2017 has hardly been a typical year for movies (any year that plays host to “Dunkirk,” “The Lost City of Z,” “Song to Song,” and “Wonder Woman” is off to a scorching start) and “War for the Planet of the Apes” is hardly a typical franchise installment. It’s too brutal, honest, and heartfelt to deserve that classification.

It is, in other words, the finest sequel of 2017 so far (note to “Blade Runner 2049” director Denis Villeneuve: your move). Here are eight reasons why.

1. It offers an unforgettable and insightful portrait of a post-apocalyptic Earth

By the time that “War of the Planet of the Apes” begins, humankind has become a specter of itself. The scientific exploits of Will Rodman (James Franco) may have unleashed ultra-smart apes like the noble chimp revolutionary Caesar (Andy Serkis, who leads a cast of ape portrayers who act via motion capture so bedazzling that “seamless” is too crude a descriptor) in “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” (2011), but they also led to the creation of the so-called Simian Flu, which decimated a vast swath of the human race. As a result, our species has been apparently been reduced to little more than → continue…

From:: Taste Of Cinema