We'll say this much: At least they didn't try emulating the humans-in-furry-makeup look of those old Planet Of The Apes movies starring Charlon Heston.
Set in a near-future San Francisco, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes finds driven scientist Will Rodman (James Franco) working hard on what he hopes is an effective cure for Alzheimer's disease. Thinking that he's hit upon something revolutionary that will cure other debilitating brain conditions and even boost brain power, Will's test subject, a bright chimp named Caesar (played via performance capture by Andy Serkis) starts thinking a little too much. And gets angry, and forms a posse of other apes. And that's when shit hits the proverbial fan.
The visual effects take centerstage here, with money-shots galore of the progressively smarter apes ice-grilling folks with menacingly human eyes, swarming the trees of suburbia and, finally, turning the Golden Gate Bridge into a playpen. Everything that's non-ape feels a bit underwhelming (Franco's bizarre casting, the blatantly Inception-like sound design), but those EFX sure do look impressive. If nothing else, we're in store for some uneven yet enjoyable popcorn entertainment.
Directed by Rupert Wyatt, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes also stars Freida Pinto, for your always-needed eye candy purposes. The primates will raise hell in theaters starting on August 5th.