Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes parents guide

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes Parent Guide

The movie is better than it should be, with high quality computer animation and a coherent story.

Overall B-

Theaters: In the generations since Caesar's reign, apes have become the dominant species on Earth, with humans reduced to hiding in the shadows. As a new king seeks to expand his kingdom, a young ape starts to question the history he's been taught.

Release date May 10, 2024

Violence C
Sexual Content A
Profanity B-
Substance Use A

Why is Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes rated PG-13? The MPAA rated Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence/action

Run Time: 145 minutes

Parent Movie Review

With the war for the planet won, ape leader Caesar (Andy Serkis) guided his new civilization into an oasis where he eventually died. In subsequent generations, small clans split off and spread across the world, gradually forgetting Caesar and the fall of humanity.

Noa (Owen Teague) lives peacefully in one of these distant settlements – until one day, the village is razed to the ground, the entire tribe abducted, and Noa’s father killed by a group of brutal apes claiming to work for Caesar. Noa sets out after the killers and finds along the way an orangutan named Raka (Peter Macon) who tells Noa about the real Caesar – not the petty tyrant Proximus (Kevin Durand) who now uses his name. The two also meet Nova (Freya Allan), a wild human who’s been following Noa since he left home. The three of them hope to find and rescue Noa’s tribe, but Proximus isn’t easy to find…and once he’s found, even harder to manage.

I’ve been pleasantly surprised by every single film in this franchise reboot. Every time one comes out, I see the trailer and think “That looks almost as fun as giving yourself a swirlie”. And then I end up watching it and, without fail, have a good time. I’m not arguing that these movies constitute the nucleus of some new movement in film, they’re just consistently interesting sci-fi action movies with an intriguing approach to their source material.

Now, if you’re new to the franchise, don’t worry: this is a good place to drop in. The film takes place “many generations” after the end of the last one and gives you all the information you need to understand the plot. This is helped by that story being absurdly familiar – it’s that great monomyth again, the hero’s journey beat for beat, and it doesn’t take much to figure out where things are going. The plot’s simplicity also makes the movie’s nearly two-and-a-half hour runtime completely inexcusable. It’s not a difficult story to tell.

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes is carried by the incredible performance capture technology used by Weta FX on the previous three films, which allows a cast composed almost exclusively of apes to give staggeringly human performances. These characters, despite being both non-human and entirely digital, emote so clearly with their eyes and body language that it gives the film more warmth than you would expect given its computer-based pedigree. Frankly, this technology offers more captivating performances than I’ve seen in many mediocre human-led productions.

The only area of concern for parents is violence but there is much less than would be found in the average Marvel movie, making this a pretty soft PG-13 film. The almost total absence of issues in other categories is pretty remarkable – I guess the complete collapse of human civilization has really killed the market for sex, drugs, and profanity. The apes do, eventually, learn some good old-fashioned human cussing, but it only gets used three times – burying, once and for all, the term “rude apes”. They’re better behaved than most kids.

Directed by Wes Ball. Starring Owen Teague, Freya Allan, Kevin Durand. Running time: 145 minutes. Theatrical release May 10, 2024. Updated

Watch the trailer for Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes
Rating & Content Info

Why is Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes rated PG-13? Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for intense sequences of sci-fi violence/action

Violence: Characters are beaten, electrocuted, stabbed, drowned, and shot. A character is violently attacked by large eagles.
Sexual Content: None.
Profanity: There are three scatological curses in the script.
Alcohol / Drug Use: None.

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Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes Parents' Guide

The apes were vulnerable to domination because they forgot the facts of their history. How does forgetting history affect humans? Have you seen tragedies in human history that could have been prevented if people had learned the lessons of the past?

Home Video

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This reboot of the Planet of the Apes franchise starts with 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes, followed by Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and War for the Planet of the Apes. Weta’s impressive digital work can also be seen in the hideously over-long Avatar: The Way of Water. Another recent take on a monkey monarchy is in Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire.