Planet of the Apes has always dealt with the darker side of humanity. Divided societies and social alienation have featured heavily in the films and this is no different with the current reboot. Caesar is constantly battling for the freedom of his people. This constant struggle for dominance, as well as a need for understanding between humans and apes make the films very relevant.
Caesar is raised by humans, so he holds a deep connection with them. However, the closing events of the last film see much of the apes’ home destroyed by a faction of humans. This, of course, puts the leader of the apes in a difficult position in this up-and-coming instalment. In an interview with Collider, Andy Serkis, the man behind Caesar, explains:
“So two years have passed and the ALZ drug has continued to enable Caesar to develop. He’s there now living in a situation where both apes and humans are at war. There’s a sense that this is the crux, this is the climactic moment where both species are under huge threat and it’s pretty apocalyptic.
“You’ll remember Caesar as a character — one of his main characteristics, having been brought up with human beings, was to be empathetic to both sides but an event happens at the beginning of this movie that sets him off on a track that almost eats him up…”
According to producer Dylan Clark:
“He goes on a dark quest because he thinks… Caesar believes if he can kill Woody [Harrelson’s character – the main human antagonist], the apes can win this war and start anew. It doesn’t work out that way. Caesar, on his own, gets caught in his own thing…”
This then sets Caesar on a more unstable path, as Serkis explains:
“[It’s] a revenge mission after this event happens without giving too much away. He goes through this incredible journey going to the dark heart of himself, probably the darkest he’s ever encountered. This voyage of self-destruction… “
War of the Planet of the Apes premieres on July 14, 2017.
Image: 20th Century Fox