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Movie Review: Kingdom Of...The Apes 2024-05-13 16:23:25



The Planet of the Apes series never convinces me that a virus could just mysteriously transform non-human primates into chatterboxes.


Physiologically, what makes our speech possible is the arguably unique human larynx, which plays a pivotal role in phonation, allowing us to produce voiced sounds. *  Additionally, Broca's and Wernicke's areas in the human brain are vital to language processing, enabling us to comprehend and generate complex linguistic expressions.

It is therefore not really surprising that Mae, the human protagonist, is so verbal while the virus is supposed to have muted her. She happens to be a genius, of course. No genius, no science fiction.

Interestingly, Proximus Caesar, the tyrannical ape king, already has a human scholar enslaved as his brain trust. Talented Mae naturally becomes his fresh "headhunting" target, so to speak. Knowledge is power. Ambitious Proximus might want to win the chip war one day. Just kidding. He falls when he thinks he is infallible.

Meanwhile, I must say I truly admire Raka, an orangutan, who impresses me as a simian humanitarian, a gem in a dark age.

This movie impeccably blends computer-generated imagery (CGI) with the ape characters whose intricate facial expressions and mannerisms come across as human. On top of that, the eerie yet serene post-apocalyptic scenes can easily take one's breath away. So, if you're a big fan of top-notch visual effects, this flick is a must-see in IMAX theaters.


Author: renqiulan


* One may find a contrarian view in "The phonetic potential of nonhuman vocal tracts: comparative cineradiographic observations of vocalizing animals" by W.T. Fitch in Phonetica (2000).




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