Rise of the Planet of the Apes Reviews

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David Thomson
The New Republic
June 24, 2013
Caesar [the main ape] is the reason to see this daft, breathless picture.
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David Denby
New Yorker
August 30, 2011
Rise of the Planet of the Apes is spectacle with a kick: the transcendence of the normal in creatures so like ourselves is both an entertainment and a needling rebuke to human vanity.
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Bruce Diones
New Yorker
August 22, 2011
The action scenes (particularly a battle between humans and apes on the Golden Gate Bridge) are inventively spectacular, and the story at the movie's core is evocative and engaging.
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Nigel Floyd
Time Out
August 17, 2011
Distinguishes itself from other ill-conceived reboots in general, and from Tim Burton's disastrous 2001 remake in particular, by looking with fresh, simian eyes at its core conflict between human and primates.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Richard Roeper
Richard Roeper.com
August 6, 2011
A well-crafted B movie with astonishingly effective motion capture CGI technology.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
August 5, 2011
Tthe movie has some plot-point missteps. But it seldom puts the brakes on a story that moves toward a furious ape-human rumble, not in a jungle, but atop the Golden Gate Bridge.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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August 5, 2011
A creature feature of disappointing stupidity, Rise of the Planet of the Apes replaces the sociopolitical underpinnings of the original film and its sequels with a limp warning about the evils of animal testing.
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Tom Long
Detroit News
August 5, 2011
Pass the bananas.
Full Review | Original Score: B-
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Christopher Orr
The Atlantic
August 5, 2011
[H]alf good and half bad, and the primary dividing line is by genus.
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Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
August 5, 2011
Since the only really good Planet of the Apes movie was the 1968 original with Charlton Heston, I've always wondered why filmmakers can't just leave well enough alone.
Full Review | Original Score: C-
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Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
August 5, 2011
What isn't here are any of the joys of the classic film.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
August 5, 2011
It's faint praise to say that this is the best of the "Planet of the Apes" movies, because the evolution of special effects and makeup was predictable. But the unexpected strength of the film is its heart.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
August 5, 2011
The running time is efficient, the direction is clean, the story is simple but resonant, the effects are understated yet impressive, and the near-wordless star of the show puts on an acting clinic.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Kyle Smith
New York Post
August 5, 2011
They probably should have called it "Beneath the Dignity of the Planet of the Apes," but "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" is tolerable if you'll just keep in mind that the original feature was an overachieving B-movie.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
August 5, 2011
The filmmakers seem to have spent so much attention and, presumably, money on getting the primates right that they completely forgot about the people.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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Eric D. Snider
Film.com
August 5, 2011
Sweet fragrant bananas, Rise of the Planet of the Apes is a blast.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Chris Vognar
Dallas Morning News
August 4, 2011
Conjured through the ever-expanding magic of performance-capture technology, the apes are easily the most compelling elements of Apes.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Chicago Reader
August 4, 2011
The first half (presumably where most of the narrative scenes were excised) is frustratingly arrhythmic; more satisfying is the ape revolution of the final half-hour, a scary and deftly handled passage.
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Claudia Puig
USA Today
August 4, 2011
With its skillful blend of live action and motion-capture technology, it's a handsomely made prequel to familiar monkey business.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
August 4, 2011
It is not what could be fairly called a bad movie, but neither is it fine enough to be a good one, with its lineup of dull characters and a limp story that functions like a conveyor belt.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
August 4, 2011
Rises above its dramatic deficits, boosts the collective IQ of this summer's movies and swings into flights of kinetic fantasy that blow the collective mind.
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Dana Stevens
Slate
August 4, 2011
This movie is a worthy claimant to the simian throne and the rare summer blockbuster that gets more, not less, fun as it goes along.
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Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
August 4, 2011
Swift and nimble, like the rising ape at its center, "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" is gratifyingly free of the usual big-budget blockbuster weight and volume.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
August 4, 2011
"Rise of the Planet of the Apes" is first-class entertainment, packed with clever, unsettling and even inspired ideas.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
August 4, 2011
As both a simian simile and a wonder of technology, Rise of the Planet of the Apes deserves to be in the company of the great original Kong.
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
August 4, 2011
"Rise of the Planet of the Apes" does it right. Smart, fun and thoroughly enjoyable, it's a model summer diversion that entertains without insulting your intelligence.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
August 4, 2011
Rise of the Planet of the Apes rises and, at times, even soars - all thanks to what human actors in league with computer technology can now achieve to bring the apes to life.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Ty Burr
Boston Globe
August 4, 2011
You may, like me, skulk into the new "Rise of the Planet of the Apes'' expecting the worst. And you may, like me, be genuinely surprised by where this movie takes you.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
August 4, 2011
In the oeuvre of Planet of the Apes pics - four sequels to the original, and the 2001 Tim Burton-directed remake - Rise is certainly not the most interesting, nor the most inventive. But it's not risible, either.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Alonso Duralde
TheWrap
August 4, 2011
Everything Burton's movie wasn't -- smart, exciting and thought-provoking, while operating in the realm of the movies' great misunderstood monsters.
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Nick Pinkerton
Village Voice
August 4, 2011
Caesar's prison conversion to charismatic pan-ape revolutionist is near-silent filmmaking, with simple and precise images illustrating Caesar's General-like divining of personalities and his organization of a group from chaos to order.
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James Berardinelli
ReelViews
August 4, 2011
The central problem with Rise of the Planet of the Apes is that it feels more like a piece of something larger than a complete motion picture.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
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Glenn Kenny
MSN Movies
August 4, 2011
...very nearly close to completely awesome, and is the best sci-fi blockbuster of the summer, in a walk, even.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Manohla Dargis
New York Times
August 4, 2011
Precisely the kind of summer diversion that the studios have such a hard time making now. It's good, canny-dumb fun.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
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Todd McCarthy
Hollywood Reporter
August 4, 2011
Strong action, special effects and by far the most credible ape "performances" yet seen will spell box office to inspire chest-thumping in all markets.
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Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
August 4, 2011
I kind of enjoyed "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" despite its evident silliness and the fact that nobody's likely to remember it three weeks from now.
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Keith Phipps
AV Club
August 4, 2011
Wyatt ... keeps the action compelling whether focusing on apes as they run amok or as they quietly contemplate their next move.
Full Review | Original Score: B
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Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
August 4, 2011
An odd blend of silly popcorn entertainment and sometimes startling poignancy.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
August 4, 2011
One never knows exactly where the human ends and the effects begin, but Serkis and/or Caesar gives the best performance in the movie.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Peter Howell
Toronto Star
August 4, 2011
Wyatt's version, scripted by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (who previously teamed for The Relic), pays tribute to the original series without being bound by it.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
August 4, 2011
"Rise of the Planet of the Apes" is this summer's best popcorn flick.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
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Peter Debruge
Variety
August 3, 2011
Rise of the Planet of the Apes makes for an impressive, if predictably downbeat prequel to a franchise famous for unhappy endings.
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Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
August 3, 2011
Rarely has a story about the end of the world seemed so boring.
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Christy Lemire
Associated Press
August 3, 2011
This seventh film in the Planet of the Apes series rises to such ridiculous heights, it's impossible not to laugh out loud -- in a good way, in appreciation.
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Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
August 3, 2011
If you've ever seen or heard about a "Planet of the Apes" movie, you know where this is leading. But that doesn't make the trip any less enjoyable.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
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Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
August 3, 2011
It's just an apes-on-the-rampage creature feature, with a decent setup, a wobbly second act, and a glorified-videogame urban-action payoff.
Full Review | Original Score: B-