I was ultimately surprised by how much emotional depth is put into place by the actions & interactions between the vast array of both ape & human characters. Add to that some visually pleasing action sequences, unpredictable twist & turns, and strong narrative, we have yet another excellent summer blockbuster.
The thing that really caught me off guard is just how much emotional depth they are able to bring to screen, even with the apes. The different apes each portray different kind of personality and vision, and seeing them like this gives them a very human character, both good and bad. So to see them interact with one another, with very strong emotional background, in turn results in such believable actions by each characters. Such conflicts & tensions then arise, and much alike what happened within the human circle. Each have their own reasons for being who they are and do the things they do. All this gives us such a great emotional story to invest in for two strong hours.
Initially it seems like the narrative was going to be straightforward. But what in fact happened is that there are twist and turns along the way that takes the story into directions we rarely expect. With good & bad characters on both sides, it certainly feel a bit more complex. But with characters to root for on either side, tension & suspense is kept throughout as they interact with one another trying to achieve their respective goals.
The strong emotional delivery is in no small part thanks to the amazing cast. Credit certainly due to the apes motion capture actors, especially Andy Serkis. But my personal commendation is to human character actor Gary Oldman. Though he has only a small amount of screen time, but his performance was (as always, perhaps) brilliant. The way he shakes when he himself feels scared after encountering the apes, and when he grieves at the loss of his family, gives us a convincing portrayal of a character.
Technicality-wise, the action sequences were excellent, and so are the visual effects they were presented upon. Very strong emotional plot becomes the key to why this is such a great movie. But it could be improved upon with more humour and light-toned scenes added into the mix. Nevertheless, it is such a great movie on its own and really is yet another wonderful summer blockbuster.
Good: Strong emotional depth, Excellent narrative, Brilliant cast, Amazing action sequences, Great visuals
Bad: Lack of humour