[Carchmudgeon (not dead yet)] Shark Goes Ape (no spoilers)

edited July 2001 in General Discussion

Comments

  • edited December 1969
    Zilla mentioned that he really wasn't all that impressed with Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes. Your enjoyment of the movie may depend on how much of an Ape geek you are. Or maybe he was just sour because the best monster movie of all time stars a giant guy in an ape suit (King Kong) not a giant guy in a lizard suit. ;-)

    I'm such a Planet of the Apes freak that on my 13th birthday I had a big party with a bunch of friends to watch the premiere of the Planet of the Apes TV series. Waaay back in September 1974. Woo!

    Overall, I quite enjoyed the movie. In addition to being a big Ape freak, I'm also a big Tim Burton fan. His take on this story was as unique and Burtonesque as Batman. Oddly enough, the best performances in the movie were turned out by the actors with all the makeup on! Marky Mark's performance was a bit flat. Most everything else, though, was delicious -- especially the comic relief slaver character and Tim Roth's deliciously evil General Thade. Michael Clarke Duncan wasn't half bad either, but most of his role consisted of standing around looking powerful. And he had the best line in the movie ;-)

    The plot was typical pulp fare. There was one interesting sociological difference between the original and this film, emphasized by the role of Helena Bonham Carter's character ... but more details about that could be construed as spoilers.

    Most of the folks in the theatre clearly had not seen the original movie; I was the only one laughin at several of the funny back-references.

    I give this one a full-on $30.00 rating (full ticket + video price). No need to wait for a matinee or video release... and I'll certainly be picking up the DVD when it's released.

    But like I said ... I'm a Planet of the Apes fanboy!

    _/ C

  • edited December 1969
    Ack, I disagree (spoilers)

    ack!!

    ER.. *insert female chimpanzee sex crazed howl from the movie here*

    Ok.. even the few moments that I could immerse myself in this film, the badly placed references to the first movie pulled me right back out and let me know that I was watching guys in ape suits do a bad saturday night live skit. The scene (which was obviously added late in script writing) of Charlton Heston as Ape God decendant had me hitting my head audibly in the theatre. Yes, this current president of the NRA hands his son a hidden human gun, speaks of the horrors of human destructiveness, and then dies, with his final words being "Damn them, damn them all to hell *gasp*". Can you BE more trite?

    Humans escaping apes, trying be secret about it decide that the fastest way through the city is to run though every (to this point in the movie) known ape's home interupting their 'every day' lives like the "Just a Gigalo" David Lee Roth video. A female chimp walks in and complains of 'A Bad Hair Day"?!?! This is a joke I'd expect to see on a cast and crew outtakes reel, and placed there it would have been funny. That this one liner was performed by a character named Nova played by Burton's wife Lisa Marie makes it even more silly.

    Hell even Estalla Warren was, in all her beauty, boring to look at and have on screen. Other than her being a woman of appropriate age, was there ANY rason given to feel sexual tension between these two? Was her part originally written for a mute supermodel? Mark Wahlberg actually had me entertained, I enjoyed following his trek and his reaction to events was highly beleivable, but even the best ape acting was highly stereotypical. Instead of feeling for these characters, I wanted them all to just go away. Even the boring humans. You can't tell me that when the humans came out at the end that you wanted to save them at all. How did this sorry crew ever survive in the forest let alone repel an ape attack with sharp sticks and a good speech??? OH and the line... Mark says "Tell them to go back" and Estella says "They can't go back, they left their homes to be with you". Uh.. ok.. then have them go back to their homes, or could I be less clear?

    Oh, and the ending... the ending... lame lame lame. It defies even the loosest logic developed by the film. The only way you can make sense of it is to make excuses FOR it. Grrr.

    I love Burton films, his treatment of Batman was supurb, Sleepy Hollow still has my mind warped, Edward Scissor Hands was supremely beautiful and emotional. Planet of the Apes trips over it's technical hurdles and a badly written script trying too hard to do too little. In fact, the only Burton-esque aspect of this film I could find was the art direction. The Ape Armour was sight to behold. See. the little artistic details were marvelous. The symbol they branded on humans was a glyph derived from the shape of the space station. Neat huh? The shape of the crashed space station looked alot like the Statue of Libery's headpiece (get the subtle reference?). The Ape's body motions and pure visciousness, had me honestly very very afraid of them. Cinematography was pretty!

    Grrrrrrrrr. But everything else ruined it for me:

    If it has two moons, it's an alien world. If it is an alien world, why are there horses running around? If it is earth, is it earth in the past, and if it is earth on the past why would an exact duplicate of Washington DC be created? Why did the monkey's space suit have no gloves? (or Mark's for that matter). Why would the Ape's entire social culture evolve to be so human like? Dinner parties, lipstick, dancing to rock music in the streets, odd ape sex on square beds. Was it neccesary to cast only large black men in the Gorilla roles and White men in the Chimpanzee roles? Burton films are usually very internally consistant, and that is very very cool. You set up rules that are freaky and follow them to the letter. This creates a believable breathing world to slip into. Unfortunately for every painstaking effort to create this world of the Apes, there was an obvious 'this is just a movie' line or action that removed any possible suspension of disbelief for me.

    I was a huge fan of the first Planet of the Apes movie, my brother even made an extreamly expansive (and popular) MUD out of it that I lived in for a while. This movie tries to pay homage to this legacy and extend it into the present. These two ideas tripped messily over each other and left me wishing it had all been a dream.

    -Santa


  • edited December 1969
    Re: Ack, I disagree (spoilers)

    Well, I haven't seen the movie BUT a few of the things you complain about can be explained if you ever read the book.

    Grrrrrrrrr. But everything else ruined it for me:

    If it has two moons, it's an alien world. If it is an alien
    world, why are there horses running around?
    According to the book, the planet follows Earth's evolutionary path, hence horses and stuff. Weak, maybe, but that's hot it is.

    If it is earth, is it earth in the past, and if it is earth on the >past why would an exact duplicate of Washington DC be created?

    Why would the Ape's entire social culture evolve to be so human
    like? Dinner parties, lipstick, dancing to rock music in the
    streets, odd ape sex on square beds.
    If you read the book, you'll see it's quite a bit diffrent than the first movie. Whereas in the first movie, its earth in the future, in the second book, its another planet. But the key shocker in the end of the book comes when the apes discover how to awake dormant memories in the mute humans by stimulating their brains. Thus, the mute humans begin to talk about how their trained apes are starting to mimic their actions, speech, and many other things. Finally, the apes just take over the human's homes and continue on with the humans' lives. Thus, thats how the apes got to be so much like humans. The reasoning being that humans had taken the evolutionary path as far as they could, and it was time for a new species to have a chance. But anyway, in the end of the book, the main character escapes and gets into his spaceship and blasts his way back to earth (the only big deal being that while it gets close to the speed of light, time passes slowly for him, but it passes quickly for the rest of the universe) where he lands, and finds that earth is a planet full of walking, talking, intelligent apes.

    Anyway, that was more about the book than the movie, but it may give ya an idea of why they tried to mesh so many things together.

    Fox
  • edited December 1969
    Yah.. the book was verra interesting...

    Thanks for the words Fox *8)

    We have a bonified lover of the book in our office in the form of Chris Jacobson, and he even told us the whole book's take on the universe and stuff before we went. If this movie had been true to that, I'd be cool with it. It's when lines like "Can't we all just ... get along" get thrown into the mix that I start to roll my eyes. (How many times can this line be thrown into a Tim Burton movie and still be funny anyhow?) There are at least 10 moments that deserve a da dum dum *ching* drum roll after them, like a bad stand up routine.

    I would have really really enjoyed this movie if it had taken itself a bit more seriously, if the ape world was wicked and self consistant (liek the very successful armour and house exteriors), and made little immediate sense to humans, and you perhaps felt truely displaced, instead of some episode of that Honeymooners Dinosaur Sitcom (forget the name).

    Please go see the movie and see if you agree.

    Oh, and as far as earth following a similar line of evolution, in the end there is a specific reference to the alien planet's Evil Ape General (in the form of Lincoln in the Licoln Memorial), as though he were also an incarnation on earth. It's a huge "WTF?!?!" I heard guys in the restroom afterwards saying what a huge load of crap it was, offering possible nonsensical reasons it could have happened.

    An alternate ending we thought of that would have at least continued the humorous, though obvious, homage to the first movie: Our hero crash lands in New York instead of DC and swims out of his sinking spacecraft to see the Statue of Libery looming above, with an ape face. OR... He crash lands on a future mars (which was the unknown alien planet at some point in the past all along) and he flies over and sees that the Face of Mars is actually a huge Ape Monument. yada yada... (incidently, Mars has two small moons)

    Seriously, before you think I'm the ranting fool I am, go see the movie. *8)

    If you walk out without at least once, audibly, saying "that was lame..." I'll apologize profusely. *smile*

    Cheers!

    -Santa


  • edited December 1969
    Re: Shark Goes Ape (no spoilers)

    Saw it today myself and have two comments about it (beyond the fact that I did quite enjoy it).

    1) I think I can safely say about the ending (without revealing anything that hasn't already been said) -- Serves his fool ass right! :)

    2) Even in full ape makeup, Helena Bonham-Carter is STILL hotter than the blonde walking wallpaper they cast in the human woman role. Woo! Hot monkey luuuuuvvv!! =)

    (there, that should mess with their heads)

    Stormtalon
  • edited December 1969
    No ranting fool...

    Seriously, before you think I'm the ranting fool I am, go see
    the movie. *8)

    Nah, you're no ranting fool... you just felt that...

    I would have really really enjoyed this movie if it had taken
    itself a bit more seriously, if the ape world was wicked and
    self consistant (liek the very successful armour and house
    exteriors), and made little immediate sense to humans, and you
    perhaps felt truely displaced, instead of some episode of that
    Honeymooners Dinosaur Sitcom (forget the name).

    And in fact that is how the movie had been promoted! In reality, Apes was yet another Tim Burton farcical romp through a silly but fun Fantasy/SF premise. A'la "Batman", "Mars Attacks!" and (dare I say it) "Pee Wee's Big Adventure".

    Have another look at those movies and see if you don't agree...

    Tim Burton is just a strange, silly man... with the occasional foray into the "serious" (Sleepy Hollow, Edward Scissorhands--my favorite Christmas movie, am I twisted or what?).

    _/ C


  • edited December 1969
    Re: No ranting fool...

    And in fact that is how the movie had been promoted!

    I dunno... all the previews make it look like a very serious, scary, action sci-fi flick.

  • edited December 1969
    That's what I meant ...

    I dunno... all the previews make it look like a very serious,
    scary, action sci-fi flick.

    Santa was expecting a serious, scary, action sci-fi flick, because the movie has been promoted as a serious, scary, action sci-fi flick. (I shoulda trimmed the last sentence of his quote ...)

    _/ C

  • edited December 1969
    My quoting error

    I dunno... all the previews make it look like a very serious,
    scary, action sci-fi flick.

    That's what I meant to say ... Santa is neither ranting nor foolish, because the Apes trailers & print ads set expectations for a tense action movie. I meant to refer to his expectations, not the silly tv show bit.

    ...ken

  • edited December 1969
    Actually...

    That's what I meant to say ... Santa is neither ranting nor
    foolish, because the Apes trailers & print ads set
    expectations for a tense action movie. I meant to refer to his
    expectations, not the silly tv show bit.

    ...ken
    Put that way, it kinda reminds me of the Episode I trailers.. I mean, large beasts comming out of the mist.. a voiceover saying: "For every story, there is a beginning...". And then.. we see the movie and are surrounded by Jar Jar.

    Very similar to Apes, where the most moving lines (from the end of the movie) are used to build the tone as some very intense, interesting, deep place. And then we get the nice slave trader who sells asperin to loving children.

    You know.. I just remembered what I said as I was walking out of the theater, post-Apes... "You know, if they could only write movies like the write previews."

    *8)

    -Santa
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