Beneath The Planet Of The Apes


Beneath The Planet Of The Apes

Critics Consensus

Beneath the Planet of the Apes delivers more action than its predecessor -- unfortunately, at the expense of the social subtext that elevates the franchise's best entries.



Total Count: 32


Audience Score

User Ratings: 23,790
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Movie Info

Sometime after the events of the first Planet of the Apes, the climax of which is repeated frame for frame at the beginning of this sequel, another set of astronauts arrives on the far-future Earth that is the titular planet. This time it's Brent (James Franciscus) who survives the crash landing and learns that evolved simians have taken over the world, post-apocalypse. After hooking up with Nova (Linda Harrison), the mute, fur bikini-clad beauty who spent the first film being squired by astronaut Taylor (Charlton Heston), Brent confers with Zira (Kim Hunter) and Cornelius (David Watson, giving Roddy McDowall his only break during the five-film series), the ape scientists whose adherence to scientific principles makes them friendly to the possibility of intelligent human life. Something of a military coup has taken place among the apes, who dispatch an army to the desolate "Forbidden Zone" where Taylor has coincidentally disappeared. With the apes and the humans both rooting about in the ruins of 20th century civilization, it's only a matter of time before they all find out what happened to the other survivors of the nuclear holocaust. ~ Brian J. Dillard, Rovi


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Critic Reviews for Beneath The Planet Of The Apes

All Critics (32) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (12) | Rotten (20)

  • The whole movie is often frightening in the wrong way -- not by force of satire but by weight of attitudinizing.

    Mar 18, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Hokey and slapdash.

    Jun 4, 2007 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Top Critic
  • This first sequel to Planet of the Apes isn't bad, but already shows the way the original conception was to degenerate into routine comic strip adventure.

    Jan 26, 2006 | Full Review…

    Tom Milne

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • As the apes close in and the mutants squeal their annoying noises, it's hard to care which side wins or loses, and that is a great disappointment after the excitement of the first film.

    May 12, 2001 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • There's no question that with its mishmash of half-baked ideas, lack of strong characterization and clear budgetary issues, Beneath represents a steep drop in overall quality from the magnificent Planet of the Apes.

    Mar 26, 2019 | Full Review…
  • The ending of Beneath the Planet of the Apes has shock value, but it's hollow.

    Mar 26, 2019 | Rating: C- | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Beneath The Planet Of The Apes

  • Jun 29, 2014
    In one of the biggest sequel letdowns I have ever seen, "Beneath the Planet of the Apes" follows another astronaut who crash lands on the same planet as Taylor from the first film while searching for him. He learns about the planet's true identity very quickly and the first half just feels like it borrows heavily from the script of the first. It is very lazy screenwriting and when they eventually do explore beneath the planet, it just becomes bizarre and laughable. I did not care what happened to any of these characters, because their motivations are manipulated throughout and you cannot latch onto anything that is happening. I really wanted to like this film, but it just flat out drops the ball. Terrible writing, horrible effects, and lukewarm performances, "Beneath the Planet of the Apes" is not worth your time at all. Although I do applaud a few nice touches, this film is a piece of garbage.
    KJ P Super Reviewer
  • Mar 31, 2014
    I was a great fan of all the Planet of the Apes movies, but because I watched them as a child, I decided to revisit them and write the reviews. First one I got from the series was this 1970 film directed by Ted Post and written by Paul Dehn. It is the second of five films in the original Planet of the Apes series produced by Arthur P. Jacobs. The film stars James Franciscus, Kim Hunter, and Linda Harrison, and features Charlton Heston in a supporting role. What a disappointment! In this sequel, another spacecraft crashes on the planet ruled by apes, carrying astronaut Brent who searches for Taylor and discovers an underground city inhabited by mutated humans with psychic powers (real boring creatures). Beneath the Planet of the Apes was a success at the box office but it wasn't anything special! Following the events of Planet of the Apes, time-displaced astronaut Taylor (Charlton Heston) and the mute Nova (Linda Harrison) are riding on horseback through the desert of the Forbidden Zone... the start was like out of nowhere, directing was really atrocious in those first few minutes! Without warning, fire shoots up from the ground and deep chasms open. Confused by the strange phenomenon, Taylor investigates a cliff wall and disappears before Nova's eyes. It looked like everything was hurried, and had no feelings or substance. Later, the directing improves but you can see in almost every shot that Ted Post is a TV director, not ready for a cinema... yet. Acting was almost identical to the original movie, I would not spend too much time there - good is the word! The most outstanding part of this movie was the music part. Taking over for Jerry Goldsmith, composer Leonard Rosenman retained the neoprimitive musical underpinnings of the ape world while creating a score very much written in his own, inimitable style. Rosenman's approach is in its way diametrically opposed to Goldsmith's-composed of vertically-stacked layers of sound, clanging, metallic effects, bristling, rambunctious chase music and a perverse, chaotic march for the ape army. Add to this some striking electronic effects and a bizarre choral mass written for the atomic bomb-worshipping mutants, and you have the recipe for one of the most original science fiction movie scores ever written. Sadly, not even that could save the movie from the negative score!
    Panta O Super Reviewer
  • Jul 04, 2012
    has some interesting points but by the end it all comes to a poor conclusion. charlton heston is wasted in a minor role and is replaced with a poor clone. the idea was a good concept but sadly it doesn't work after a while
    Brendan N Super Reviewer
  • Mar 10, 2012
    Beneath the Planet of the Apes is a fairly good sci-fi drama, but lacks the craft of the original. The story follows Brent, an astronaut sent to rescue Taylor, who ends up marooned on the same planet, but is taken captive by human mutants who live in the Forbidden Zone. James Franciscus, Linda Harrison, and Kim Hunter lead the cast and give solid performances. However, the poor effects hinder the film and (with the mystery of the planet revealed in the first film) it's hard to recreate the same suspense again. Still, the film finds an interesting place to take the story and expands the mythology. Ultimately, Beneath the Planet of the Apes fails to deliver on the promise of first film, and instead delivers a mediocre sequel.
    Dann M Super Reviewer

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