Conquest of the Planet of the Apes (1972)
October 18, 2022 6:13 AM - Subscribe

In the futuristic world of 1990, mankind has embraced ape slavery. Caesar (Roddy McDowall), the son of the late simians Cornelius and Zira, surfaces after almost twenty years of hiding out from the authorities, and prepares for a slave revolt against humanity.

Also starring Don Murray, Ricardo Montalban, Hari Rhodes, Severn Darden, Lou Wagner, Natalie Trundy.

Directed by J. Lee Thompson (Guns of Navarone). Written by Paul Dehn.

55% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.

Currently available for digital rental in the US on multiple outlets. JustWatch listing.
posted by DirtyOldTown (6 comments total)
Still posting Planet of the Apes movies...

This one gets a bad rap. I actually think it's pretty good. Caesar goes all Nat Turner. What's not to like? McDowall and Montalban are both terrific here. J. Lee Thompson is an actual action director and he brings the goods. He also makes terrific use of brutalist and modern architecture at Century City and UC Irvine to represent the future on a budget. Thompson staged every scene with attention to detail, such as highlighting the conflicts with color: the humans wear black and other muted colors, while the apes' suits are colorful.

The first film in the newest reboot series is essentially an uncredited remake of this film
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:16 AM on October 18, 2022 [1 favorite]

My favorite scene is when our ape is given the opportunity to "name himself" by being handed a reference book, with the presumption being that he's illiterate and will pick a random word.

Our guy can read though, and calmly flips to and selects "CAESAR." Badass.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 2:16 PM on October 18, 2022 [3 favorites]

The timeline of the Apes movies sometimes baffles me, but overall I enjoyed this one. The design and aesthetics made it visually interesting.
posted by davidmsc at 2:49 PM on October 19, 2022

This one is in my #2 slot of Apes films. The time spent in the human society with apes as tortured slaves has you totally rooting for Caesar's side at the revolutionary climax, which creates the world of the first film. McDowall is great in this one.
posted by mediareport at 6:53 AM on October 22, 2022 [1 favorite]

This thread got me rewatching Ceasar's mind-blowing final revolutionary speech - here's the last 4 minutes of the movie with that scene. McDowall's eyes, his posture, his voice, the way he commits to bloody fervor when asked if ape rule will be "for better or for worse"'s a fantastic and very grim finale and he sells it perfectly.

Totally agree this one doesn't get the respect it deserves. Shame that so few folks get this far in the series. The ending sets up the first film and completes the series nicely right here.

5th movie? What 5th movie?
posted by mediareport at 5:17 PM on October 22, 2022 [1 favorite]

Agree that this should have been the end. I mean, essentially all the fifth one is is "So, like the ape revolution happens and set up this future but these apes were still alive in their own time for a while, and they fought a couple three more times."

Caesar's final speech was created in ADR after shooting. He originally gave a bloody militant speech and they changed their minds and rewrote it. Since his mouth is never that clear anyway because of the makeup, they were able to re-edit the existing footage and dub over it.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:11 PM on October 22, 2022

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