Planet of the Apes

Planet of the Apes

4.5 7
Director: Franklin J. Schaffner

Cast: Charlton Heston, Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter


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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Gregory Baird
Simply put, Planet of the Apes is a great film. The various film and TV sequels, the collectable lunch boxes, and the lingering visions of thespians emoting through simian-shaped latex can't obscure that fact. Like the Pierre Boulle novel that inspired it, the film has just enough satirical wit to carry the day. Three American astronauts, including Charlton Heston, crash-land into an upside-down world where the apes are civilized and humans are wild. Heston's overblown performance as George Taylor is legendary -- his delivery alone makes for great one-liners. The actors playing apes are also riveting: Roddy McDowall and Kim Hunter shine through their makeup (which won a special Academy Award) as a pair of scientists who befriend Taylor. Also chewing the scenery is Maurice Evans, who, as Dr. Zaius, sees Taylor as a threat to the ape status quo. Sharply directed by Franklin Schaffner, the film features some stunning scenery and a superb score by Jerry Goldsmith. But the real fun comes from such throwaways as "Human see, human do" and "I never met an ape I didn't like" (The Twilight Zone's Rod Serling was one of the screenwriters). Good to the last shot, Planet of the Apes also boasts one of the best endings in cinema history. You'll laugh. You'll cry. You'll groan out loud.
All Movie Guide - Dan Jardine
Mike Wilson and Rod Serling's script plays heavily (and sometimes simple-mindedly) on the conflicts between faith and science, while the paradoxically inverted relationship of man to apes allows the filmmakers to drive home some rather pointed attacks on racist behavior and intolerant attitudes on our planet. Charlton Heston's performance is not particularly subtle, but, between contorted grimaces and hollered epithets, he does create sympathy for his lost and angry character. The most compelling performance is by Roddy McDowell, who must spend the entire movie hidden in an ape costume. Director Franklin J. Schaffner (Patton, Papillon), along with his set designers, art directors, and makeup artists, creates an intriguing alternative world, with rabbit-warren-like habitations and cold, clinical ape masters. Planet of the Apes has an undeniable camp appeal -- several lines of dialogue are both intentionally and unintentionally hilarious, gender roles are badly dated, and the ape costumes have not aged well -- but the final scene holds up as a stirring and evocative moment of self-realization. John Chambers won an honorary Oscar for his innovative makeup.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
20th Century Fox
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Feature commentary by Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Natalie Trundy and makeup artist John Chambers; Feature commentary by composer Jerry Goldsmith; Feature text commentary by Eric Greene, author of "Planet of the Ape as American Myth"

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Charlton Heston Taylor
Roddy McDowall Cornelius
Kim Hunter Zira
Maurice Evans Zaius
James Whitmore President of the Assembly
James Daly Honorius
Linda Harrison Nova
Lou Wagner Lucius
Woodrow Parfrey Maximus
Jeff Burton Dodge
Buck Kartalian Julius
Robert Gunner Landon
Diane Stanley Female Astronaut
Norman Burton Hunt Leader
Wright King Dr. Galen
Paul Lambert Minister
Harry Monty Actor

Technical Credits
Franklin J. Schaffner Director
L.B. Abbott Special Effects
Mort Abrahams Producer
John Chambers Makeup Special Effects
William J. Creber Art Director
Art Cruickshank Special Effects
David Dockendorf Sound/Sound Designer
Hugh S. Fowler Editor
Jerry Goldsmith Score Composer
Morton Haack Costumes/Costume Designer
Arthur P. Jacobs Producer
William Kissell Asst. Director
Emil Kosa Special Effects
Herman Lewis Sound/Sound Designer
Ben Nye Makeup
Norman Rockett Set Decoration/Design
Walter Scott Set Decoration/Design
Rod Serling Screenwriter
Leon Shamroy Cinematographer
Jack Martin Smith Art Director
Dan Striepeke Makeup
Michael Wilson Screenwriter

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Planet of the Apes
1. The Long Sleep [3:01]
2. Main Titles [:24]
3. Crash Landing [1:56]
4. The Expedition [:22]
5. The Seekers [5:49]
6. Life [4:22]
7. Scarecrows [3:02]
8. The Clothes Snatchers [2:09]
9. The Hunt [3:32]
10. Zira [1:29]
11. Dr. Zaius [1:39]
12. Cornelius [3:11]
13. "My Name Is Taylor" [4:59]
14. "It's a Stunt" [:10]
15. No Escape [1:54]
16. "It's a Madhouse" [4:47]
17. The Hearing [3:08]
18. New Identity [:12]
19. Talking Heresy [1:50]
20. Zaiuz' Fear [5:38]
21. The Abduction [2:28]
22. The Forbidden Zone [3:59]
23. On the Beach [2:15]
24. The Cave [1:09]
25. The Hostage [7:17]
26. Saying Goodbye [1:14]
27. The Revelation [:46]
28. Cast of Characters [3:37]


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