Visible cues point out that Proximus Caesar’s kingdom is modeled partly on the Roman Empire, with its colonizing affect and its intention to brush the riches of the traditional human world — its historical past, its labor, its expertise — into its personal coffers. By telling his model of Caesar’s legacy, Proximus Caesar makes the apes consider they’re a part of some mighty, unstoppable drive of historical past.

However after all, historical past has a behavior of repeating itself, whether or not it’s historical Rome or Egypt, and in Proximus Caesar’s proclamations one detects a little bit of Ozymandias: Look on his works, ye mighty, and despair! “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” is ready sooner or later, however like a whole lot of science fiction — “Dune,” as an example, or “Battlestar Galactica,” or Walter Miller’s “A Canticle for Leibowitz” — there’s a realizing sense that every one this has occurred earlier than, and all it will occur once more.

That’s what makes “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” highly effective, ultimately. It probes how the act of co-opting idealisms and changing them to dogmas has occurred many instances over. What’s extra, it factors straight on the immense hazard of romanticizing the previous, imagining that if we might solely reclaim and reframe and resurrect historical past, our current issues can be solved. Golden ages have been hardly ever truly golden, however historical past is affected by leaders who tried to make individuals consider they have been anyhow. It’s an effective way to make individuals do their bidding.

There are some hints close to the top of “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” of what is perhaps subsequent for the franchise, ought to it’s fated to proceed. However the uneasy enjoyable of the sequence is we already know what occurs, finally; it was proper there within the first film, and the warning it poses stays bleak.

Initially of the 1968 movie, the star Charlton Heston explains, “I can’t assist pondering someplace within the universe there must be one thing higher than man.” You might need anticipated, from a film like this, that “higher” species can be these apes. Nevertheless it seems we’d should maintain trying.

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes
Rated PG-13, for scenes of peril and woe and a few humorous, delicate swear phrases. Operating time: 2 hours 25 minutes. In theaters.



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