Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes
Outstanding. To me this was much more engaging than Rise, which I also really liked. Dawn is a much darker film and story. Set ten years after Rise, it's a completely different world out there. This is about how I would expect things to go in a situation like this. Fear and panic driving many decisions. The phrase often mentioned when discussing this is "an uneasy peace". That's actually a perfect description of the entire film. Everything about it is uneasy and tense.
The film is very much a story seen from the apes' point of view. Humans in this case are the secondary players. They don't really need names because they aren't important to the ape world or nearly any of the apes themselves. It's not unlike the 1968 film where they're just a generic species to the apes. They're just humans.
It's reminiscent of the structure of Battle for the Planet of the Apes. Obviously done on a much larger, much darker, and much more realistic scale. It had a few scenes that reminded me of particular scenes in Battle. That's not a criticism. This film feels like a Planet Of The Apes film.
A part of that is the score, which also deserves a mention. Giacchino did a fantastic job. It's a deliberate nod to the 1968 film and fits perfectly in what is now, like the 1968 film, an ape society.
Saw it in 3D and was again very happy with it. Not at all distracting, and really made me feel like I was in the film.
No doubt about it, I'll see it again in the theater and have it on DVD as soon as it's available. Already have the soundtrack. Listening to it now, in fact.
Dawn gets an easy 5 out of 5 messenger bags.