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Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971)

 -  Action | Sci-Fi  -  21 May 1971 (USA)
6.2
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 18,261 users  
Reviews: 86 user | 66 critic

The world is shocked by the appearance of two talking chimpanzees, who arrived mysteriously in a U.S. spacecraft. They become the toast of society; but one man believes them to be a threat to the human race.

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Most likely will be titled War of the Planet of the Apes.

Director: Matt Reeves
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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E-1
Jason Evers ...
E-2
...
Harry Lauter ...
...
Aide
Roy Glenn ...
Lawyer (as Roy E. Glenn Sr.)
Peter Forster ...
Cardinal
Norman Burton ...
Army Officer
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Storyline

Following the events in "Beneath the Planet of the Apes", Cornelius and Zira flee back through time to 20th Century Los Angeles, where they face fear and persecution similar to what Taylor and Brent suffered in the future, and discover the origins of the stream of events that will shape their world. Written by Marg Baskin <marg@asd.raytheon.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

ape | future | fear | spaceship | spacecraft | See more »

Taglines:

A New Generation Of Incredible Apes In The Most Exciting Suspense Film Of Them All See more »

Genres:

Action | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 May 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Secret of the Planet of the Apes  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Filmed November 30, 1970-January 20, 1971; all of the sequels were shot during the winter. See more »

Goofs

In a close-up during the interrogation scene, Kim Hunter's own mouth and teeth are visible beneath the make-up of Zira's face. See more »

Quotes

Chairman of the President's Committee of Inquiry: [referring to Cornelius] Does the other one talk?
Cornelius: [indicating Zira] Only when she lets me.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The 20th Century Fox logo does not appear on this film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dilbert: The Takeover (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Paradox of the Apes
21 May 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Following the cataclysmic finale of Beneath the Planet of the Apes, there was only one logical direction for the series to go---> back to the future. The result is an illogically conceived and satirical prequel that will amuse and delight and ultimately devastate with its bleak Shakesperean tragedy.

When Taylor's spacecraft unexpectedly splashes down in 1973 and is retrieved by a military envoy, the three astronauts that emerge from the capsule are not revealed to be Taylor, Landon and Dodge, but rather the astonishing simian ape-chimps Cornelius, Zira and Milo... the third of which is a completely disposable character who is appropriately killed off very early by a caged zoo gorilla who was probably jealous that the talking simian chimpanzees were getting all of the attention. With Milo out of the picture, the story focuses on the relationship between Cornelius and Zira in ways that were not afforded the opportunity in the two previous films and is filled with tongue-in-cheek episodes inspired by Pierre Boulle's original novel as Cornelius and Zira go around "aping" 20th century human culture (a subtle and clever mockery of our own) in an attempt to make themselves fit in to our society.

While Cornelius and Zira make themselves at home as cultural "celebrities" they are being carefully monitored under the watchful auspices of the nefarious Dr. Otto Hasslein played by recognizable character actor Eric Braeden (of Young and the Restless fame) who listens with great interest to what the talking chimps have to say about where they came from during a Presidential Inquiry and how they managed to arrive in Taylor's spacecraft as Cornelius explains that the capsule was found when it washed ashore and was repaired by Milo -- an implausibility which is the film's glaring continuity error since Taylor's spacecraft sunk into the depths of the Forbidden Zone it is a far fetched conclusion that they somehow managed to not only find, retrieve and repair it (even if they had repaired Astronaut Brent's crashed spacecraft from Beneath which was overlooked as well) with engineering far in advance of their own intellectual ape intelligence (which Milo only "half-understood" as Cornelius describes it) but managed to do so and escape within a very small window of time before the planet was obliterated by the shock-wave of destruction catapulting them backwards in time and arriving at roughly the same destination and era as Taylor's original point of departure (it could be argued that these narrative inconsistencies support evidence of "Hasslein's Observed Time Curve" which suggest that a predestination paradox created alternate intersecting timelines as illustrated by the incongruent timeline of events between Conquest and Battle). Nevertheless, once you get past the major plot hole and just go with it, Escape is a fun and dramatically intense film but is my least favorite second only to the weakest link in the evolutionary Apes chain; Battle For The Planet of the Apes.

When Zira announces that she is pregnant, the film takes a dark and conspiratorial turn when the government realizes the consequence a race of intelligent talking apes will have on the future of our human society. In an effort to protect their newborn, Cornelius and Zira find refuge with Armando, a sideshow circus entertainer played by the extravagant Ricardo Montalban who gladly welcomes the simian family with open arms, but it isn't long before Dr. Otto Hasslein picks up the fugitives' trail and hunts them down in a tragic and inevitable climax that sets up the paradox of the entire Planet of the Apes chronology.


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Message Boards

Recent Posts
Should've been called 'Exposition of the Planet of the Apes' theb1927
Hate the retcon of the backstory keithbalbi
Dr. Zira is pregnant and they give her Alcohol (Grape Juice Plus)! ChristopherDrews
How the heck did he draw that conclusion? TheTitan101
Isn't it obvious that Zira switched the baby?? Valentino55
Makes no sense? Shaunster88

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