July 11, 2014, - 8:59 am

Weekend Box Office: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Hellion

By Debbie Schlussel

Nothing worth paying to see among the new offerings at the movies, this weekend:


* “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes“: With a human male and an ape male nearly kissing toward the end of this movie, methinks the only thing the next sequel can do to top the absurdity of this one is interspecies erotica followed by an interspecies baby who faces extreme prejudice from humans. You know that’s coming soon.

The message of this PETA-esque movie is: apes are people, too. Humans and apes are morally equivalent in this movie, and, actually, the apes are maybe better, since the humans interrupt and partially destroy the apes’ peaceful way of life. The late Charlton Heston can rest easy: his original “Planet of the Apes” movie still reigns supreme. Not that this is a surprise.

The movie was incredibly long, boring, and repetitive. And it couldn’t have been more uninteresting. Despite the fact that this movie is heavily marketed to kids, it’s also extremely bloody and violent, with the apes throwing another ape off a balcony, and you are treated to a loud splat!. Then, there are the apes machine-gunning humans to death. But, still, we are told that the apes are the good guys who are just responding after the humans invaded and killed an innocent ape boy. I felt like I was watching CNN coverage of the “innocent” HAMAS Palestinians weeping over their dead boys while nobody gave a crap or remembered the three Israeli Jewish teens who were kidnapped and murdered for no reason.

The movie takes place ten years or so after the first “reboot” of the “Planet of the Apes” movies, “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” (read my review), which I didn’t think was all that great, but is a masterpiece compared to this. A virus has wiped out most of the human race, and there is no electric power. Humans live in one area (and most of civilization is overgrown and abandoned), and apes live in the woods. The apes are a super race of apes because of the experimentation that’s been done on them by the evil humans ten years earlier.

Soon, humans decide to invade ape territory because they want to fix a dam in order to restore electricity. But an evil human murders an ape son, and it breeds hatred of humans within the ape population. Only the peaceful head of the apes, Caesar, holds the apes back. But his rival, Koba, hates humans after the killing, and he tries to murder Caesar and frame the humans for it. This starts a war, with the apes invading the human area and killing and imprisoning them.

Sounds like an anti-ape movie, right? Nope. Even with all this, it is “all the humans’ fault.” Like I said: CNN HAMAS coverage or Trayvon Martin coverage. And I’ve had enough of that in real life news. I don’t need to pay to see it in a dark movie theater in a long, boring silver screen diatribe.

And neither do you (but if you must, do not pay extra to see it in 3D – the 3D stinks). Thanks, Rupert Murdoch.

I had to laugh as the audience at the screening I attended applauded this tripe at the end. Americans are suckers easily sated with bread-and-circuses cinema despite its disturbing content and messages, just as they are with bread-and-circuses presidents. After all, they gave us eight years of Barack Obama and George W. Bush.


Watch the trailer . . .

* “Hellion“: This is supposed to be another “breakout” movie for “Breaking Bad” star Aaron Paul. And it fails miserably. It’s low-budget and it shows. And the story and movie were pointless and a complete and total waste of time.

Paul plays yet another in the long string of irresponsible, careless dads brought to us by anti-male Hollywood. He’s a working-class father whose wife died, and he is left to raise two sons. But he leaves them alone for weeks while he gets drunk and works on a vacation home that the family is about to lose to foreclosure. The older son, a young teen, is a vandal and criminal, who gets caught. But he is let out and he influences the younger son to get involved in the life of crime, too. Soon, Paul loses custody of the younger son to his sister-in-law. And the life of crime of the older son continues. It all ends in worse violence involving a gun. The end.

Like I said, a pointless waste of time.


Watch the trailer . . .

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32 Responses

Debbie…we saw this movie at Sundance Film festival last January..I just finished reading your critique to my wife, she just turned to me and went, ” geez , thats exactly what you said about it “….ha

HK: Great minds think alike. But what were you doing at Sundance? That’s liberal movie nirvana. DS

HK on July 11, 2014 at 9:29 am

    yes,yes I know. My daughter did some producing for the Sundance Festival 2014 and is a small fry muck a muck over there. Oh well. haha

    HK on July 11, 2014 at 10:11 am

It’s the human’s fault because the apes are the underdogs, that’s all.

Dakuan on July 11, 2014 at 9:57 am

People must be conditioned to root for the underdog just like Pavlov’s original underdog so liberals can return balance to the force.
Even if it kills us.
And that’s the way the story goes

Dakuan on July 11, 2014 at 10:15 am

“[Luke:] I can’t believe it. [Yoda:] That is why you fail.”

(just to be annoying)

Dakuan on July 11, 2014 at 10:20 am

Does Aaron Paul get to say “bitch” ala Jesse Pinkman in the movie as well?

ebayer on July 11, 2014 at 10:33 am

Thanks for the reviews Debbie. However a movie starring Michelle Obama and her relatives or another movie about one of Hollyweirds favorite whipping boys (irresponsible dads) is not worth my 10 bucks. Besides I have cool cop shows like Taxi Brooklyn and Longmire to catch up on.

[From Debbie: I want to point out to my readers and visitors to the site that Ken b is Black, which needs to be indicated given this comment. DS]

Ken b on July 11, 2014 at 10:54 am

Thanks for killing my buzz. I was looking forward to the ape flick. When I was a kid growing up in the 70’s I would LIVE for the next ape movie to come out. I know , other than the original the others were tripe too, but I didn’t care. Apes on horseback shooting guns? I was in nirvana. To this day I still want a pet monkey.

john on July 11, 2014 at 10:58 am

    that buzz goes for $7.99

    Dakuan on July 11, 2014 at 11:32 am

The Planet of the Apes franchise should have ended in the 70’s. Hollywood loves its retreads, and retreads of retreads. As for Hellion, it sounds like the sort of recycled tripe that has been served up since the late 1960’s. Hollywood regurgitates more than it produces these days.

Worry01 on July 11, 2014 at 11:27 am


This would be hilarious if it weren’t so true. But I had a good laugh anyway, as this particular prediction is going to take some time (I think?) to be a reality.

Ralph Adamo on July 11, 2014 at 11:49 am

“With a human male and an ape male nearly kissing toward the end of this movie, methinks the only thing the next sequel can do to top the absurdity of this one is interspecies erotica followed by an interspecies baby who faces extreme prejudice from humans. You know that’s coming soon.”

This would be hilarious if it weren’t so true. But I had a good laugh anyway, as this particular prediction is going to take some time (I think?) to be a reality.

Ralph Adamo on July 11, 2014 at 11:55 am

    Not exactly as overt but this kind of topic has already been addressed in movies like The Island of Dr. Moreau so it wouldn’t really be much of a leap at all.

    Dakuan on July 11, 2014 at 1:47 pm

Just got some nature videos out of the library. Will watch this weekend. They’re much more interesting than hollywierd movies.

David on July 11, 2014 at 12:43 pm

I’m rather partial to the Tim Burton reboot of “Planet of the Apes,” which came out in 2001. Very underrated.

Seek on July 11, 2014 at 1:29 pm

Okay, here is the real story.

The original “Planet of the Apes” was a really good movie; however, liberals saw this movie, which came out about 1968(?) as a racist metaphor, with the black people being apes, and the white people being the humans. In the original movie, the apes were basically savages who copied and twisted what the humans had created, and took credit for anything the humans had done (Kind of like “The Wiz v. The Wizard of Oz” debate). It takes a liberal to call black people apes, but no one at the time picked that up. These same liberals saw the 1933 King Kong as representing the oppressed black man in America (ignoring the fact that Kong went after the white blonde girl).

In today’s liberal environment, the apes (representing the blacks) are the higher, more intelligent and more ethical species, and it is the humans (Western society) exploiting the apes.

Have I got this wrong, Deb?

JEG: Yes, some say that the apes in the movie are supposed to represent Blacks, but since that is incredibly racist, I know Hollywood would NEVER EVER do such a thing. Right? DS

Jonathan E. Grant on July 11, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    Movies that reasonate with the public, like the Planet of the Apes franchise, are ALWAYS based on current events, and the better ones also say something about where things are going. For some interesting insights on this franchise, see “Planet of the Apes as American Myth: Race, Politics, and Poular Culture,” by Eric Greene. http://www.amazon.ca/Planet-Apes-American-Myth- Politics/dp/0819563293

    Ralph Adamo on July 11, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    Right back @ JEG…

    Let’s take this metaphor one step further and see the Original “Planet of the Apes” movie as a story about the aftermath of a socialist revolution, the rank-and-file apes being the proletariat while the the higher level (non-human) primates represent the Comintern.

    Everyone has a spin on whatever pop-culture release gets thrown at them. I enjoyed the POTA series as a kid. Would I enjoy them the same way as a jaded adult? I’ll have to binge-watch them to find out.

    The Reverend Jacques on July 12, 2014 at 9:08 am

    Jonathan: you got it.

    Fits the liberal SOP too. Poor innocent non-whites victimized by evil whites, and then every evil action by the non-whites from now until infinity is the fault of the evil whites.

    Or think of the evil whites as Western Civ, and the Apes as Every-Other-Culture-That-Has-Lost-The-Contest-To-Western-Civ.

    PitandPen on July 13, 2014 at 9:08 pm

I see the ape movie is being pushed in certain supposedly conservative circles.

skzion on July 11, 2014 at 2:37 pm

I don’t like summer blockbuster reboots for the simple reason that they seem to be made for tax-writeoff purposes.

After all, cocaine can’t buy itself.

The Reverend Jacques on July 11, 2014 at 2:41 pm

I guess millennial/hispter – types really liked/fantasized about being the “Jesse Pinkman” character in “Breaking?” Because he was an annoying, one-dimensional, and shallowly – acted one, for sure. Oh… I guess that explains why they identified with him.

DS_ROCKS! on July 11, 2014 at 3:10 pm

Man, DS…you always kill a nice, liberal, movie making buzz. And for that, I love you more each day. I am tired of trying to explain to my black friends that Hollywood is pimping you. They take your money, your best actors and turn them out and mock the true and living God, weekly, at the box office.

From Tyler Perry movies to Spike Lee joints, STOP THE MADNESS! We are not monolithic, robotic or collectively anyone’s anything.

Step back and read your bible, history books and then your bible again. No one is real in Hollywood. Nothing is real there either. The few decent movies that slip out of there, get condemned by liberal reviewers and media. Save your money and stop wasting your time…it is far more precious than you realize.

PaulTheDeacon on July 11, 2014 at 4:33 pm

Alrighty, then if people can make such superior apes, why couldn’t they have then “evolved” themselves into a higher state too? After all, the anatomical similarities are pretty close. Right? I tired of these stupid “people are evil” movies. The apes were superior to Hama though.

Rudemeister on July 11, 2014 at 4:37 pm

    Hey Rudemeister, a shout out to you for posting the face of one of the funniest men to grace the silver screen. Nyuk, Nyuk, Nyuk.

    Jonathan E. Grant on July 11, 2014 at 5:27 pm

      Shemp was always my favorite.

      DS_ROCKS! on July 11, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    @Rudemeister…..a little Brighto will make those old monkey bodies new..

    HK on July 11, 2014 at 9:22 pm

    Actually, Koba’s the main villain. And it’s made quite clear that letting his anger get the better of him turned him into a monster WORSE than the humans.

    By the end of the film, the Apes and humans are inevitably heading toward a war that neither side wants.

    Adam Sherman on July 12, 2014 at 2:56 am

It’s the humans’ fault for wasting AP in a flopper like that.

William Baranowski on July 11, 2014 at 8:29 pm

Yet, all the other critics I’ve happened to read LOVE this movie, especially the special effects. I rely on Debbie’s reviews. We don’t go to the movies much, it’s mostly a great waste of time and big bucks.

JeffT on July 12, 2014 at 3:24 pm

A few comments: Thank you, thank you, thank you, Debbie, for printing this review. I now know that those movies are garbage and not worth my time (Unfortunately, I did NOT get to Fargo to see the RIFFED version of Sharknado, which WOULD have been worth my time. As in MST3K riffed.), which is useful when going to the movies can run,with “snacks,” easily up to $50-$60 for a family of 4 in rural Minnesota.

Regarding the Stooges: actually, Moe was really a gentle paterfamilias, who invested well and took care of his brithers AND Larry Fine when ill health overtook them. A true mensch. But Shemp had the most artistic genius of the 3.

Occam's Tool on July 12, 2014 at 3:28 pm

Debbie I always love your movie reviews even if I do not agree with them. I especially love your take about the latest schlock of the Planet of the Apes movie being a Hollywood version of a CNN coverage of the news.

I have noticed all those movies in the last twenty years as being humans=bad, nature=good. When I talk to these advocates of the enviroment, I notice a talk of “humans are destroying the enviroment, humans cause extinctions, humans are not worth living on this planet, etc”.

My question to these fools is, Do you include yourself as part of the human race? Somehow these people believe they are not human but either some other “advanced life form” of some kind, that is observing humans bad behavior. These people act so detached to reality to the point they do not even acknowledge they are human beings. Oh and they love to anthropomorphise(give human features and characteristics to something) animals which defeats their argument that they are not human.

Mario on July 12, 2014 at 9:32 pm

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