Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
2014
***
Director: Matt Reeves
Cast: Andy Serkis, Jason Clarke, Gary Oldman, Keri Russell, Toby Kebbell, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Nick Thurston, Kirk Acevedo, Enrique Murcian, Terry Notary

Ten years after the Simian Flu wiped out most of humanity, the ape colony come across a group of human survivors, who hope to fix the nearby hydroelectric dam in order to restore power in the city. Caesar, the leader of the colony, reluctantly allows access to maintain peaceful relations, but some of the other apes are not equally open-minded. Rise of the Planet of the Apes was a terrifically gripping and intimate character portrait of Caesar. The sequel is a more traditional science fiction spectacle which deals with racism with big showy battle scenes. However, these scenes are low in drama because I am not invested in the characters on either side of the warring parties. Technically the movie is flawless. The mix of motion capture and digital effects is impressive.