Rise of the Planet of the Apes Parent Guide
Like the previous productions in the series, this one contains strong moral messages about the definition of humanity and the subjugation of those deemed to be of a lower ranking.
Parent Movie Review
It says something about the developmental process when the first word spoken by a monkey in this movie is "no". That’s been the first word of a few toddlers I know. But Caesar’s (Andy Serkis) cognitive skills far exceed those of a human 2-year-old thanks to an experimental drug injected into his mother before his birth.
Driven to reverse the ravaging effect of Alzheimer’s Disease, Will Rodman (James Franco) is the scientist behind the brain-enhancing medication. And his father’s (John Lithgow) battle against the memory-stealing malady causes him to rush through the trial process. But during a presentation to prospective investors, he and a company executive (David Oyelowo) discover potential side effects after their test ape goes berserk and demolishes much of the laboratory before breaking into the boardroom.
As a result of the incident, Will’s program is shelved, the remaining lab animals are euthanized and Caesar becomes the only link to his research. When chimp handler, Robert Franklin (Tyler Labine) refuses to give the newborn a lethal injection, the young scientist sneaks the chimpanzee out of the building. At home, Will, unwilling to give up on his pharmaceutical study, attempts to revise the drug’s molecular makeup and uses his ailing father as a human guinea pig.
Meanwhile, Caesar grows from an adorable infant into a turbulent teen. Along the way he masters sign language, intricate puzzles and challenging mental exercises.
However, his exceptional intelligence doesn’t prevent him from ending up in a primate shelter after he attacks a belligerent neighbor who is berating Will’s dementia-riddled father. Locked away in a facility with abusive animal attendants (Tom Felton, Brian Cox), Caesar suffers indignities along with the other abandoned animals. (Why a pound exclusively for primates would be needed near San Francisco is never explained.)
But unlike the gorilla (Richard Riding) and a discarded performing orangutan (Karin Konoval), Caesar has the smarts to initiate a prison break and the emotional connection to make audiences cheer him on. He begins by reordering the hierarchy on the premises, establishing himself as the leader. Then, after exposing the other primates to a stolen dose of Will’s experimental antidote, Caesar mounts an attack on the humans.
Billed as an origin’s story, this remake of the 1972 film Conquest of the Planet of the Apes, features motion-capture performances and CGI primates created by the digital wizardry of Weta Digital, the company behind the Avatar characters. Many of the cheesy effects of the earlier movie are thankfully lost, although the zoo bars break off the cages so easily that one wonders why the animals didn’t let themselves out a long time ago. But the interactions between humans and beasts are significantly more violent with characters being shot, beaten, electrocuted and subjected to testing procedures.
Like the previous productions in the series, this one contains strong moral messages about the definition of humanity and the subjugation of those deemed to be of a lower ranking. But while the apes certainly prove the inadequacies of mankind, they have yet to demonstrate that the new order of primates will be any more principled.Directed by Rupert Wyatt . Starring James Franco, Andy Serkis, Freida Pinto . Running time: 105 minutes. Theatrical release August 5, 2011. Updated July 13, 2016
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Rating & Content Info
Why is Rise of the Planet of the Apes rated PG-13? Rise of the Planet of the Apes is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for intense and frightening sequences of action and violence.
Violence: Men capture wild animals using guns and nets. Characters are subjected to drug testing, shot and killed, imprisoned, electrocuted, tortured and beaten. Characters threaten and yell at others. Apes attack humans on numerous occasions. A man is bitten and others are exposed to blood and untested drugs. Apes fight among themselves. Depictions of violence include gunfire, explosions and the use of clubs. Numerous corpses are seen along with some bloody injuries.
Sexual Content: A couple kisses. They are shown asleep together in bed.
Language: The script contains over a dozen profanities including scatological slang, terms of Deity and mild expletives. A strong sexual expletive is cut off mid-sentence.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Tranquilizers and other drug therapies are used on animals. One man is subjected to drug testing.
Page last updated July 13, 2016
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Parents' Guide
Once they are free from their cages, how do the different primates react to the humans? Why do some seem more intent on enacting revenge? Are their reactions very humanlike?
What are the dangers of drug development? What are the advantages? How can companies ethically test their products? Should animals be used in that process? What are the alternatives?
How does this movie tie itself to the previous Planet of the Ape films?
The most recent home video release of Rise of the Planet of the Apes movie is December 13, 2011. Here are some details…
Home Video Notes: Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Release Date: 13 December 2011
Rise of the Planet of the Apes releases to home video on December 13, 2011, with the following bonus extras:
- The Pre-vis for The Future
- Ape Facts (Chimpanzee, Gorilla, and Orangutan)
- Character Concept Art Gallery
- Three Theatrical Trailers
- Capturing Caesar – Script to Screen
- Audio Commentaries
- Studying the Genius of Andy Serkis
- Deleted Scenes
- Multi-Angle: Rocket Cookie Scene
- A New Generation of Apes
- Breaking Motion Capture Boundaries
- Breaking New Sound Barriers: The Music and Sound Design of Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Home Video Notes: Planet Of The Apes: Caesar’s Warrior Collection
Release Date: 2 December 2014
Planet Of The Apes: Caesar’s Warrior Collection releases to home video (Blu-ray/DVD) with the following:
- Copy of Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2 Discs)
- Copy of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2 Discs)
- Caesar Ape Head (outer box dimensions: 12” wide by 11.5” deep by 14.5” tall)
- A 32-page “Planet of the Apes: Building an Icon” booklet
- Four collectible battle-ready ape character cards.