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Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The Planet of the Apes prequel trilogy doesn’t seem to get enough credit. They took a classic existing franchise (all the way from 1968) and, thanks to current technology, were able to give us a fresh film series that’s never felt cheap or suffered from “prequelitis.” The first film Rise of the Planet of the Apes introduced us to Caesar (Andy “Just Give Him His Damn Oscar Already” Serkis). The second film Dawn of the Planet of the Apes showed the start of a war between humanity, and the now highly evolved apes. It was one of the most clever (anti)war movies of recent memory, and this weekend, the third film in the trilogy, War for The Planet of the Apes is hitting theaters, and is already getting a lot of positive buzz (94 per cent on Rotten Tomatoes). Some are even saying that the third movie is making this trilogy one of the best ever made.

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Director Matt Reeves is back in the saddle for War of the Planet of the Apes, the third film in the rebooted Apes franchise and recently tweeted out the first on set production picture you can check out below. It’s uncertain if that is Andy Serkis as Caesar on the horse, although that would be my best guess at this point. Why the beach though? (more…)

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At the beginning of the year, it’s only natural to start re-evaluating where you are and where you’re going, and to start making plans to change course and get to that new place. We call them New Year’s Resolutions, and a great many of us make them every January 1. Should we expect movie studios to be so different? In the game of “Musical Chairs” that is the major studio release schedule, we’ve got some old favorites making some new moves. 20th Century Fox has announced several big moves for major releases over the next couple of years, included among them are a couple of comic book franchises, a video game movie, and a continuation of a major science fiction series. (more…)

The Top 10 Nerdy Movies of 2014

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As we say goodbye to 2014, we also say goodbye to an interesting and provocative year for movies that appealed to the nerd base. Amongst the genres of sci-fi, fantasy, action and horror, there were a number of very excellent contenders for the Best of the Year, all covering a wide range of themes, styles, and ideas which were brought to the screen by some very talented filmmakers, actors and artists. Amongst this year’s top choices was a return to space, both serious and adventurous. We also saw aliens who come to Earth, and future versions of Earth where humans are an endangered species. We saw vivid worlds imagined, and vivid worlds that never came to be. And we took a trip through the crime-soaked back alleys of Jakarta and the possibility-fueled streets of the Great White Way. Before spinning off into 2015, which may be the biggest year for nerdy movies ever, let’s take a look back at the Best Nerdy Movies of 2014. (more…)

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When motion capture performance became a thing at the beginning of the 21st century, Andy Serkis was at the forefront, and it was his dedication and talent playing Gollum in The Lord of the Rings trilogy that made people realize this was an extremely effective tool in creating a new kind of performance on film. Still, like most technological evolutions in Hollywood, there has yet to be a lot of love for it from the establishment, and by that we mean major awards consideration. There’s been talk before of Serkis getting a nod for Lord of the Rings or other roles where his performance has been motion captured, but Twentieth Century Fox is now apparently getting ready to make a serious push for Serkis to get an Academy Award nomination for his work in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. (more…)

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Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is something of a miracle.

Ostensibly a remake of J. Lee Thompson’s Battles For the Planet of the Apes (the fifth film in the original series), Matt Reeves’ refashioning of that picture is nothing less than a stirring marvel of a movie, brimming with emotion and style in equal measure. Daring in ways many modern big budget franchise films would never dare, Dawn is the result of putting cinema and character first, a rarity in an age where commitment to brand is usually priority number one for studios when expanding upon previous summer cash cows. But beyond showcasing Reeves as being one of the most exciting directorial talents in mainstream American filmmaking, the second installment in this new series of Apes films yet again proves that Andy Serkis is a God working amongst mere mortals, pushing the craft of performance capture acting into uncharted qualitative territories. In short, it’s the movie of the summer and will easily end up being one of 2014’s best. (more…)

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Who would have guessed that three years ago we’d be eager for more Planet of the Apes movies? Yes, Rise of the Planet of the Apes was a tremendous success both critically and commercially, which means that the next film, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes from director Matt Reeves is highly anticipated. It’s about a month and a half till the film hits theaters, but if your one of those overly-eager types, there’s a new Japanese trailer for Dawn below. If you saw the latest American trailer, it has a lot of the same footage but there’s a bit more focus on the action. It looks like Man versus Ape will take on a whole new meaning this summer…. (more…)