The quality that always brought audiences to science fiction is what if question. What if there is life in outer space, what beings would we possibly encounter? What if we can travel through time, how would that affect history and the future?
In 1968, a new science fiction film premiered. Based on the book of the same name, Planet Of The Apes was the story of astronaut George Taylor’s (Charlton Heston) experience on a new planet. After his ship crash lands, Taylor discovers that the dominant species are apes and humans are second class creatures. Unable to communicate because of damage to his throat, Taylor is roped in with the rest of the humans. Cornelius (Roddy McDowall) and Zira (Kim Hunter) soon realize that Taylor is not the average human. Will Taylor regain his voice and his liberty or will he spend the rest of his life in subjugation to the apes?
In 2001, Tim Burton took the helm of the reboot. Starring Mark Walhberg as Captain Leo Davidson and Helena Bonham Carter as Ari, one of the more benevolent apes, Burton and the rest of the creative team attempted to put their own spin on Planet Of The Apes while still retaining most of the elements of the original films and the novel.
While the 1968 film has the underbelly of the social and political unrest of the late 1960’s, the 2001 film is less political, but not as Burton-ish has one might expect.
Do I recommend them? The 1968 film, yes. The 2001 film, that depends on how loyal the audience is to the film in its previous incarnation.