Planet of the Apes
by Mark Rivers
As the release date for the 2001 version of Planet of the Apes approached, I heard
some scuttlebutt about a protest surrounding the original version in the 1960's. It seems
that some uppity negroes didn't like the way apes were portrayed in that movie; that it
hit them a little too close to home.
This is exactly the case in the updated version of Planet of the Apes. The apes are
distinctly negroid in word and action. The little ones run around playing basketball and
being obnoxious, the teenaged ones stand around the street corners and drink while loud
music plays, the adults fight and jump around screeching, and nearly all of them are
Despite the presence of Jews (co-writer Mark ROSENTHAL), this 2001 version of Planet of the Apes has the distinction of being the
only one of Hollywood's recent films that I actually recommend.
Paul Giamatti plays an ape who is a Jew-like slave trader. He treats the humans like
filthy animals, but later, when he is cowering at the humans' vengeful wrath, he quips
"Can't we all just get along?" It's just the sort of last-resort humility a negro would
feign as the noose is slipped around his neck.
As soon as I realized that I loved watching this movie, my suspicions were aroused: why
would the Jews allow such a movie to be made? If director Tim Burton's intentions were to
show negroes as they really are, he cleverly disguised the fact by playing up a few
typically "touchy-feely" scenes, namely:
1) Helena Bonham Carter's character, Ari. She, like Dr. Zera in the original, tries
to convince her fellow apes that humans can live among them as equals. A few points of
equality and brotherhood are touched upon, but the bottom line shines through; apes are
apes, and we humans are better than they are. Also, Ari isn't motivated by science and
compassion so much as she is by lust and curiosity.
2) There are negroes living amongst the humans. Get ready, I'm about to spoil part
of the ending. Unlike its 1960's predecessor, the 2001 version of Planet of the Apes
begins with Leo Davidson (WAHLBERG) on a space station orbiting Saturn. Various apes are
used as test pilots for potentially dangerous missions.
When Leo's favorite chimp pal, Pericles, disappears into an electromagnetic storm, Leo
charges in after him. He goes through a wormhole and crash lands on a distant planet (NOT
Earth). The human/ape switcheroo still happens, but its origin is drastically
You see, when Leo crashes, his ship comes to rescue him and also crashes. The difference
is, the ship crashes onto the planet in the present. Leo crashes onto the planet several
centuries in the future.
When the ship crashes, the crew and monkeys get along fine at first, but then the monkeys
revolt and take over. The humans are eventually reduced to the slave class they are in
Leo's time. What it amounts to is this: Leo's rescue attempt results in an entire
planet becoming populated by oppressive, semi-literate apes, ruling the humans through
terror and tyranny (that sounds familiar).
Since the humans in Leo's time are the descendants of his crew-mates, it doesn't make sense
that there are negroes among them. Even assuming that there were, say, several hundred
people on board, it seems unlikely that a bubble-lipped negro would still exist in the gene
pool centuries later. It's more likely that the population would be a slightly tainted
So, they threw a negro into Leo's human defiance party, and he fights side by side with Leo
and the rest of the human freedom fighters. Still, they don't elevate the negro beyond
that of a secondary role. He is violent and brutish, and in the final battle scene,
he is snapped in half by an ape.
The only other negro I saw was an extra in a human crowd scene. There were also an Asian
woman and a dot-head man, but they were both subservient "house humans."
3) The tree-sized negro Michael Clark Duncan plays a fervently religious gorilla in
the ape army. When General Thade (Tim ROTH), driven by greed and lust for power, goes too
far, the noble gorilla changes his tune and realizes that if we all just pray hard
enough, we can get along.
So, despite its couple of negro-pacifying moments, this 2001 version of Planet of the
Apes is one of the absolute best movies for capturing the true nature of the negroes.
It also serves as a bit of a cautionary tale. WARNING: here comes another spoiler...a big
At the very end of the movie, Leo gets in a space pod (the one previously occupied by
Pericles) and blasts off for Earth. He touches down in Washington, D.C., where he sees the
Lincoln Memorial bearing instead the likeness of General Thade. Scores of apes descend
upon him, this time driving police cars and flying helicopters.
This ending has not only left room for a couple of sequels (plus a double cheeseburger, a
blue whale and the annotated works of Charles Dickens), it makes a grim commentary on the
state of our capital, our country and our planet.
Think about it: Abraham Lincoln, for freeing the apes, has now been replaced in memory,
holiday and celebration by a descendant of one of those apes. Washington, D.C. is overrun
with apes. This is not fiction; this is what is happening RIGHT NOW, and Tim Burton has
somehow managed to give us warning, whether it was his intent or not.
We must heed this warning, and act accordingly. Not only should you see this 2001 version
of Planet ofthe Apes, you should recommend it to everyone you know, and explain why
you think it is such a winner.
Do you have a comment on this review? Your own opinion about this movie? Send it