Planet of the Apes Reviews
Look, it's easier said than done. Remakes and reboots have a lot of pressure and usually wind up being a waste of time. But there was serious potential here. With Tim Burton coming off a few solid films with Johnny Depp and box office success with Batman, you'd think he would have a grapple on what to do with the Apes franchise. Sadly, it was the exact opposite.
The original 1968 classic was thought provoking and lead to a couple really well done sequels, but Burton's take is disappointingly more creepy and awkward than it is cerebral. I'm sorry, but I just don't care for seeing Mark Wahlberg have a strange romantic relationship with a female ape. Or, rather, an equally dull relationship with a human, played by Estella Warren. No chemistry between the two, whatsoever.
But there are a few redeemable qualities surprisingly. Instead of a massive Statue of Liberty reveal at the end, Burton makes a few middle act changes that actually benefit the story in the long run. Having the very cause of the apes taking over earth being due to Wahlberg's mistake was interesting, but I'm just not sure it was earned. Something else that wasn't earned is the entire third act. Talk about an atrocious piece of mess, the third act tries to propose so many ideas and take twists and turns that it just all feels tiresome. Unfortunately, by the time the big battle comes around, you just don't care.
It's easy to look at a film in hindsight and say it shouldn't have been made, but seriously, this Apes entry should not have been made. It wasn't yet the time where visual effects offered up the opportunity to do great motion capture or picture perfect-looking Apes (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, 2014) and using old make-up was the wrong choice. It's nice for the 60's but using it in 2001 is a completely different entity. But the main problem is that the characters and story are second to an attempt to build out impressive set pieces. Tim Roth's one-note villain and the film's choice for romances make for one brutal viewing.
+Some interesting subtle changes
-Lack of reinvention
-No reason for 2001 to be the time for a remake