One of the summer’s biggest blockbusters (and quite possibly one of its best) is going to be Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes, if the thrilling trailers and posters we’ve seen for the post-apocalyptic sci-fi flick are any indication. When it comes to studio tentpoles, there’s a certain balance that needs to be struck between popcorn-friendly spectacle, gripping storytelling and strong acting for a movie to truly succeed. Rupert Wyatt’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes struck that same balance well, and I’m hopeful that Let Me In helmer Matt Reeves will bring equal excitement and intelligence to this follow-up.
The final trailer for Dawn has hit the web today, fleshing out the film’s story in a more thorough way than we’ve seen up until this point. Taking place ten years after the simian flu unleashed at the end of Rise began to decimate the human population, Dawn picks up with head ape Caesar (Andy Serkis) leading a growing nation of advanced apes. When his army encounters a group of human survivors led by Dreyfus (Gary Oldman), a man determined to wipe out the apes, tension quickly builds. However, Caesar’s friendship with human survivor Malcolm (Jason Clarke) allows the groups to reach a delicate peace. As you can tell from the trailer, that peace turns out to be unfortunately short-lived.
I’m curious to see how the apes speaking English will work within the context of Dawn – these are more advanced apes than we ever saw in Rise, each demonstrating knowledge of firearms, horseback riding and political gaming. Hopefully the visual and sound effects on Dawn will be strong enough that Caesar and his comrades speaking won’t come across as gimmicky. Something tells me though that with the amount of time and money that went into this project, that won’t be a problem.
In addition to Serkis, Oldman and Clarke, Dawn stars Keri Russell, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Judy Greer, Toby Kebbell, Jocko Sims, Terry Notary and Karin Konoval. It opens in 3D and regular on July 11th.