Dawn of the Planet of the Apes Trailer: We Need to Speak to Caesar

You still doing 2013 year-end best-ofs? I’m onto 2014, dawg. And there are eight words atop my list: Dawn. Of. The. Planet. Of. The. Goddamn. Apes. No, no, I haven’t actually seen a rough cut of the hopeful summer blockbuster or anything. It’s just that I was completely, exuberantly sideswiped by the surprise genius — from its transcendent cookie-based group-psychology teachings, to its unimpeachable helicopter-death-by-flying-monkey ways — of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and so I’m already betting the bank on the sequel.

We are now eight years in the future, time spent, we are told in this teaser, in equal measure “fighting that virus” — that make-monkeys-super-smart virus, presumably — and “fighting each other.” Now the apes have a stronghold, and Jason Clarke — last seen in Zero Dark Thirty, demonstrating the less palatable, more waterboard-y elements of our government’s counterterrorism efforts — has taken over for James Franco as the humans lead point of contact with the simians. (We have a new director, too: Unfortunately, yeah, Rupert Wyatt, who did such a smashing job the first time, is out; thankfully, onboard is Matt Reeves, whose Cloverfield credentials speak highly.)

It’s a tricky game they’re playing here with these prequels. The audience both knows of the inevitable Monkey Revolution to come, and is supposed to root against it. Usually, that might not be hard: Humans do have that whole self-survival instinct pretty well wired and all. But we are dealing with one preternaturally charismatic Monkey Revolutionary here. So, sorry, mankind: Hail Caesar!

Filed Under: Trailer of the Day

Amos Barshad has written for New York Magazine, Spin, GQ, XXL, and the Arkansas Times. He is a staff writer for Grantland.

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