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The evolution of the evolution of the apes in Planet of the Apes has been miraculous. Archeologists refer to this sort of sudden spurt of advancement as punctuated equilibrium, and lately, since the newest reload, we’ve seen what is a virtual Cambrian Explosion of special effects in film. Back in the murk of the Paleolithic epoch, circa 1968, the make-up artist John Chambers won an Academy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Make-up for the original film (Franklin J. »
- Dr. Garth Twa
While the average audience member might not automatically process this, the overall sound of a film is pivotal to our enjoyment. When it comes to composers, it's almost as if they're engineering their own films away from the filmmakers, with elevated action, moody drama and swooning romance. What's unique is hearing the music of the film, then heading home and hearing it on your own. The mark of a great composition is that it complements the movie perfectly, but on an independent listen, it creates new images all its own inside your head. This week, we listen to Michael Giachinno's score for Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes, currently the number one movie in America. The Apes movies have a long legacy of significant scores from the likes of Jerry Goldsmith and Patrick Doyle, the latter who composed Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes. But, more importantly, this »
It's the 1969 Academy Awards, and Walter Matthau and a tuxedo-clad chimp present John Chambers with an honorary Oscar for his work on Planet of the Apes. Viewed in retrospect it's one of the more surreal presentations in the ceremony's history, but this was something of a landmark event for the industry. It was only the second time the Academy had dished out a prize to make-up artists (William J Tuttle won four years earlier for 7 Faces of Dr Lao), and it highlighted the growing importance of Hollywood's backstage creative artists.
Fast-forward 45 years and prosthetics are giving way to digital pixels - for characters that require a complexity of movement and expression, performance capture technology gives a director the scope to execute their vision by marrying an actor's performance with visual effects. In its basic form, the actor will strap on a bodysuit that's wired up to a computer. All their »
Warning: Spoilers for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (and all of the Apes films, for that matter) When Battle for the Planet of the Apes ended the franchise’s first cinematic run in 1973, it concluded the series with something of a whimper instead of a bang. While many of the original Apes sequels are enduringly fascinating in their expanding narratives, trenchant topicality and surprisingly bleak endings, they were also assembly line products rushed through production annually, with nearly each successive entry’s budget slashed in half – a series constructed on a model of diminishing returns. Most of the normal creative team were not available for the fifth entry, so The Omega Man’s married screenwriting team of John and Joyce Corrington were hired to helm Battle despite being unfamiliar with the series. After inter- and intra-species conflict, Battle ends with a flash-forward (a bookending device) showing a monument of Caesar (Roddy McDowall) with a tear »
- Landon Palmer
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is now upon us, bringing with it the best computer-generated enhancements this long-running franchise has ever seen. Sean tackled Cinema Blend's official review of the Matt Reeves tent pole that has Andy Serkis reprising his role as the smarter-than-the-average ape Caesar. But with a cinematic spectacle this big, it seemed the perfect time to further explore the response this adventure elicits with a Gif review. What follows is a diary of my reactions (and overreactions) watching Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Be warned: Slight Spoilers Lie Ahead! Like many moviegoers, I grew up with Planet of The Apes movies. It was kind of unavoidable. Every few years, some cable channel would decide to marathon them all. And who can turn away from the strange appeal of Roddy McDowall's lovable monkey Cornelius? Oh. Right. Anyhow, with this deeply instilled love and »
Starring Andy Serkis as “Caesar,” the movie opens later tonight at theaters nationwide and the highly-anticipated sequel already represents more than 70% of Fandango’s weekend ticket sales.
According to a Fandango survey of more than 1,000 “Apes” ticket-buyers, 81% of them are Serkis fans and 74% contend that the Apes and Hobbit star should be considered for an Oscar for his motion capture performances.
Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes concluded with the apes breaking free from their human captors – just as a deadly human-created virus spread globally. Caesar, the benevolent ape leader, »
- Michelle McCue
Some movies, no matter how old they are, never age a day. Their situations and themes remain as relevant now as when they were first released. Watching them today, they reflect and comment on our present in ways they couldn’t possibly have anticipated. Every month we’re going to pick a movie from the past that does just that, and explore what it has to say about the here and now. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes arrives in theaters tomorrow nearly fifty years after the release of original Planet of the Apes. It’s a perfect excuse to take another look at the 1968 classic and see what it may have to say about us in 2014. Sometimes it can be hard for allegorical science-fiction to resonate past its then-and-there. Planet of the Apes, not surprisingly, doesn’t have that problem. For a film made fifty years ago— set millenniums in the future and on a »
- Alexander Huls
When a film franchise lasts for more than four decades, it’s bound to collect a few odd moments along the way, and the “Planet of the Apes” series is no exception. As the eighth film in the popular saga arrives in theaters July 11, here’s a look at some of the strangest riffs on simian cinema.
Animal acts were a staple of Johnny Carson’s 32 years on The Tonight Show, and none were more memorable than when singer Paul Williams took the stage in full orangutan makeup and crooned a bluesy ballad to promote his role as Virgil in “Battle for the Planet of the Apes.” The lit cigarette in his hairy hand helped add to the surrealism.
During the second season of this CBS variety show, Cher dressed in a loincloth and appeared with a group »
- Matthew Chernov
I didn't necessarily dislike Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, but I became increasingly aware and annoyed by just how predictable and redundant it was. It got to the point a member of my screening audience sitting behind me said, "I knew it was going to be him," and I wanted to turn around and say, "Yeah, we all knew it was going to be him... about an hour ago." Outside of a couple of instances, there isn't a moment in this film you won't see coming and what's most disappointing about that is how well made it is, how great the performances are and how utterly great some of the scenes are. Picking up ten years after the events that followed 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes, a disease ironically dubbed the "Simian Flu" has wiped out the majority of the human population save for a »
- Brad Brevet
The first press screenings have taken place for Fox's "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" and reviews have started popping up. Almost all are gushingly positive, saying it is the film of the Summer, and 'Rise' is to 'Dawn' as "Star Wars" is to "The Empire Strikes Back". Here's some of the reaction:
"An altogether smashing sequel to 2011′s better-than-expected 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes,' this vivid, violent extension of humanoid ape Caesar's troubled quest for independence bests its predecessor in nearly every technical and conceptual department, with incoming helmer Matt Reeves conducting the proceedings with more assertive genre elan..." - Guy Lodge, Variety
"A gripping account of inter-species conflict, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes manages to do at least three things exceptionally well that are hard enough to pull off individually: Maintain a simmering level of tension without let-up for two hours, seriously »
- Garth Franklin
Apes and ghosts and comics, oh my!
That’s right, now that you’ve all got your heads happily buried in FM 274, it’s time to tease our upcoming issue so you completely lose your foc—I mean—get super excited for what’s next. Debuting at Sdcc in July, #275 features a massively epic cover by Jason Edmiston:
It’s time to revisit Planet Of The Apes! Fox’s reboot of the classic franchise surprised us all when Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes proved to be a quality movie that made motion-capture CGI apes into sympathetic creatures with personalities. Now we get Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes—the trailers for which look terribly exciting and harken back to classic adventure Sci-Fi from the 60s and 70s. In honor of these new movies, FM will revisit the original series with articles that detail the history and social context of the films, »
- Holly Interlandi
Around here we're still kind of shocked that Rise of the Planet of the Apes turned out so well. Recently we caught up with sequel director Matt Reeves to see if his Dawn of the Planet of the Apes will continue that trend!
Dread Central: Planet of the Apes takes place in a post-apocalyptic world so I’m wondering: What would you miss most if civilization were to fall in your lifetime?
Matt Reeves: If civilization fell, what I would miss the most is... I have a son who is almost 3. I would miss getting texts and videos from my 3-year-old when I am working. But I guess if civilization fell, I wouldn’t be working. (laughs)
DC: Have you always been a big fan of Planet of the Apes?
Mr: As a kid I was obsessed with Planet of the Apes. I think that it is such a »
- Staci Layne Wilson
If you don't have plans for Memorial Day weekend, it will be a great time to tune in to Reelz. The weekend will feature not only a Bomb Girls marathon and the premiere of the Reelz original movie Bomb Girls: Facing the Enemy, we'll also be airing the National Memorial Day Parade on Monday at 2p Et/ 11a Pt. Of course if you need even more ways to commemorate the sacrifices of our nation’s veterans, it's a great weekend to watch some movies about real-life war heroes. Throw some popcorn in the microwave, turn on the A/C and check out our list of movies about real heroes making real sacrifices in defense of our nation’s freedom.
The VicMu Girls Are Coming Back
Sergeant York (1941)
Alvin York (Gary Cooper) was a simple man from Tennessee who hoped to avoid action in World War I because of his religious beliefs. »
- BJSprecher Sprecher
Last month, we thought it would be fun to reach out to a few of our friends in the genre, in order to bring you readers an article all about our favorite horror scores. The reception and the contributions exceeded our expectations, so when it was mentioned that “you should do a sequel to that article”, naturally, the next step would be just that: Sequels. So, we asked a few more friends, as well as some of the Icons gang, to give you a few words about our favorite scores to horror sequels. Enjoy! -Jerry
Rob G. (Co-Creator, Icons Of Fright; Host, Killer Pov): Psycho III
For me, Carter Burwell’s original score for Psycho III is one of the best film soundtracks to a sequel ever. Bold words, I know! After all, considering the history of composers behind the Psycho franchise. You can’t think of Psycho without »
- Jerry Smith
Franco and "Spring Breakers 2" producers have been engaged in a public war of words since the sequel was first announced, with both sides slinging pretty harsh zingers at the other. Franco's beef lies with producers' choice to move forward with a follow-up without the involvement of director Harmony Korine, who Franco said was the creative visionary behind the 2012 first film. He released the following rant on Instagram:
Statement About Spring Breakers 2: This is not being done with Harmony Korine or my consent. The original was wholly Harmony's creation and these producers are capitalizing on that innovative film to make money on a weak sequel. I want everyone to know that whoever is involved in the sequel is jumping on board a poison ship. »
- Katie Roberts
With their Muse Productions company hanging on such edgy fare as “American Psycho,” “Freeway,” “Buffalo 66″ and “Spring Breakers,” producers Chris and Roberta Hanley are no strangers to controversy, however there’s something in the spring air this year that has gotten them more than their share of colorful press.
Earlier this month, former business partner on the Harmony Korine-directed hit pic “Spring Breakers” Wicks Walker sued Muse and fellow producer Jordan Gertner of Hero Entertainment for breach of contract.
This week, as the Hanleys and Gertner were landing in Cannes to start tubthumping several projects, including the upcoming sequel, “Spring Breakers: The Second Coming,” their star of the original picture took to Instagram to denounce the sequel as “not being done with Harmony Korine or my consent,” acidly adding, “it will be a horrible film.”
The Hanleys and Gertner spoke to Variety exclusively about this Franco dustup, giving back »
- Steven Gaydos
One of the most critically panned science-fiction films in history is Dune, directed by David Lynch in 1981. The rights to the film version of Frank Herbert's novel changed hands several times before Lynch's adaptation, with potential producers including Arthur P. Jacobs (Planet of the Apes) and Dino De Laurentiis.
In 1975, arthouse cult filmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky secured the rights the Frank Herbert's Dune and began working on what would have been the most epic science fiction film ever created. Jodorowsky assembled creative geniuses and cultural icons from all over the world for the cast and music, creating his personal group of "spiritual warriors" for a two-year massive undertaking. Unfortunately, Jodorowsky's planned film and his story never truly made it beyond the storyboards until now.
- Debbie Cerda
In this installment, we learn that change is gonna come for some key characters in “Mad Men.” But others — not so much.
Spoiler Alert: Stop reading now if you haven’t seen “Field Trip,” episode 3 of the first half of “Mad Men’s” final season.
Matthew Weiner warned us that the scripts in these seven episodes of season 7-a would be densely packed, and he wasn’t exaggerating.
“Field Trip,” written by Heather Jeng Bladt and Weiner and directed by longtime series d.p. Christopher Manley, was overflowing with great lines and moments. But overall it felt like a more subtle delivery in many respects than the first two episodes. Jon Hamm’s performance was incredible, even by his mile-high standards, and Jessica Pare and January Jones were right up there with him.
Had the Don-Megan and Don-returns-to-the-office moments not been so powerful, I could write 800 words on Betty. »
- Cynthia Littleton
Sunday evening saw Apes on horseback in the first TV spot for Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes.
Today, 20th Century Fox released the 5th poster showing a softer side of Caesar (possibly comforting baby Cornelius?) for the upcoming sequel to Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes.
In the new film, a growing nation of genetically evolved apes led by Caesar is threatened by a band of human survivors of the devastating virus unleashed a decade earlier. They reach a fragile peace, but it proves short-lived, as both sides are brought to the brink of a war that will determine who will emerge as Earth’s dominant species.
For the die-hard fans of the franchise, including yours truly, this sounds similar to the fifth film of the original series – 1973′s Battle For The Planet Of The Apes.
Set in “North America – 2670 A.D.”, this sequel follows the ape leader, »
- Michelle McCue
Twentieth Century Fox rediscovered the sizzle that's been missing from the annual CinemaCon convention on Thursday , kicking off the company's presentation with a samba-tinged rap performance from “Rio 2” featuring Ester Dean, B.o.B and lots of showgirls before launching into a summer slate filled with big-budget sequels to its “X-Men” and “Planet of the Apes” franchises. Through its partnership with DreamWorks Animation, the studio will also distribute “How to Train Your Dragon 2” this summer, giving it three big tentpoles in one of its strongest slates to date. “Ever seen samba dancers at 10 o'clock in the morning?” asked Chris Aronson, »
- Brent Lang
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