|In the third installment of the PLANET OF THE APES prequel series -- which depicts the events that led to the primates taking control of Earth -- simian leader Caesar (played via motion capture by Andy Serkis) is horrified when his family are killed during an attack by humans on his community. Caesar soon plots revenge on the Colonel (Woody Harrelson), the human military leader behind the assault, which threatens to ignite all-out war between the two species. Directed by Matt Reeves.
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3.5 stars out of 4 -- "A stunning amount of WAR is silent...so Giacchino’s score becomes as important as the compositions for pre-sound films in the way it conveys emotion and even internal conflict. It’s phenomenal."
RogerEbert.com - Brian Tallerico (07/14/2017)
"It’s a rollicking old-fashioned warm weather entertainment juiced with the most cutting cutting-edge effects." -- Grade: B+
Entertainment Weekly - Chris Nashawaty (06/26/2017)
"Reeves spins a gripping, visually stunning and emotionally complex tale of otherness -- one that examines, against its us-vs.-them subtext, not just what it means to be human, but also humane."
Washington Post (07/13/2017)
"When digital cinema captures texture as sensuously and as precisely as this, a film can be a treat not just for blockbuster adepts but for the most rarefied aesthetes too."
Film Comment - Jonathan Romney (07/13/2017)
3.5 stars out of 4 -- "Serkis plays the charismatic chimp -- a born leader of monkeys -- again with a resonant power and depth of feeling that's nearly Shakespearean. Oscar, get busy: Serkis deserves the gold."
Rolling Stone - Peter Travers (07/10/2017)
"Mr. Reeves, who also directed DAWN, has a dark vision, but also a light touch when necessary, and, above all, a commitment to creating a world that is coherent as well as fantastical."
New York Times - A. O. Scott (07/12/2017)
"The moist dark greens of the apes' adopted habitat have once again been intoxicatingly captured by cinematographer Michael Seresin....The sheer beauty of the film is intense..."
Hollywood Reporter - Todd McCarthy (06/26/2017)
"The film’s imagery is impressively bleak..."
The Atlantic - David Sims (07/12/2017)
4 stars out of 5 -- "Wowing with its verisimilitude and dazzling with its subtlety. The apes have never been more expressive, and while most still sign rather than speak, the emotion conveyed by their furrowed faces are worth a dozen pages of dialogue."
Empire - James Dyer (06/26/2017)
"The motion-captured ape characters are the bleeding edge of digital effects, rarely short of impressive."
A.V. Club - Ignatiy Vishnevetsky (07/07/2017)
"If you already find yourself on the side of the APES enthusiasts, then WAR will likely be a mind-blowing experience, upping the ante via both its bleeding-edge visual effects and the grim self-seriousness of Reeves’ approach."
Variety - Peter Debruge (06/26/2017)
"More serious and much darker than most big-budget mid-summer blockbusters....And a whole lot more captivating."
Chicago Sun-Times - Richard Roeper (07/11/2017)
"It would be hard to overstate just how singular this picture feels in its seriousness of purpose and in its cumulative power to enthrall and astonish."
Los Angeles Times - Justin Chang (07/12/2017)
"Serkis’s Caesar is a robust, conflicted, full-bodied creation, a reluctant leader who finds himself fighting his inner beast as the movie progresses."
Boston Globe - Ty Burr (07/12/2017)