Culture & Society · Pet Peeves

A Cynical Review of the Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Perhaps I am too cynical, but I initially position myself on the edge of my seat when I go to watch a Hollywood movie as I wait to absorb the politically correct statement or message that is sure to come. Gone are the days of going to the theater to sit back, relax, eat some popcorn, and enjoy a well thought-out drama, musical, or light-hearted comedy. Hollywood mongrels are determined that contemporary movies promote a politically correct message and liberal agenda. It is predictable, and it is wearisome.

The Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is no exception. Sandwiched between 5 minutes of creative action of outraged apes riding bareback on black horses firing AK-47s, and 125 minutes of trying to follow boring monkey sign language and meaningless human dialogue is The Message. The Message is simple, and it is depressing so I shall summarize The Message in six words: apes are good, humans are bad.

For those who might want a little more information about the movie, I can, with a clear conscience, provide that having properly given the warning of a “spoiler alert.”

Let it be known that humans are bad, because they have hurt apes by using them in scientific experiments. When one of the experiments goes awry, most of humanity is destroyed by a deadly virus, which, no doubt, is primate karma. The destruction and disintegration of human civilization following the outbreak of the simian virus provides the opportunity for the apes to multiply and seize the rule of a large portion of the planet.

The legitimate right of the apes to the whole planet is implied for the movie ends with all the apes bowing before Caesar, the most ruthless and most powerful of all the apes. With paws outstretched before Caesar, the apes collectively pledge war on all humans. The Message is that it would have been better had Homo sapiens not emerged so long ago because it has done no good. The miracles in medicine, the great strides in technology, all the exalted expressions of the soul in the arts and literature, are rendered meaningless due to the cruelty of science to animals. Homo sapiens are going to be destroyed by the apes, and rightly so. The earth shall once again be known as, The Planet of the Apes. If that is not a depressing message, I do not know what is.

In contrast to The Message of the Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and all the other politically correct messages of Hollywood’s elite society, is The Message of Jesus Christ. It is a message of hope. It is a message of redemption. It is a message that proclaims a glorious future for a redeemed humanity and a renovated heaven and earth. The world can insist on promoting its pessimistic view of the future in the name of entertainment, but we, as Christians, can, according to the promise of Christ, “look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness” (2 Pet. 3:13). I like that message much better. “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof,” not the apes (1 Cor. 10:26).

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