I love apes. They are most certainly my favourite group of animals along with cats. My favourite Disney movie? Tarzan (tied with The Lion King, but whatevs). My favourite novel? Congo, by Michael Crichton. My favourite documentary? The ape/human episode of Life of Mammals.
I remember when I was a kid I would run around the house pretending to be a mountain gorilla, or a common chimpanzee, or a Bornean orangutan and would only speak to my siblings or parents if they used the sign language I had learned by reading about Koko, Washoe and Chantek and all the other signing apes. I loved it. Every time I see an ape I'm reminded of my freedom when I was kid of just running around like an ape whenever I wanted. And climbing on everything. I miss that. I love climbing on stuff. Any chance I get I will make an excuse to climb. Trees are the best though. Nothing beats climbing a big ass tree to the point where the branches don't even hold your weight anymore.
When I was about 7 I was watching TV at my aunt and uncle's house in Nelson, BC. All my siblings were with me, along with my uncle and we were just flipping channels trying to find something to watch. At this time my siblings and I had very different tastes in television, which is what tends to happen when the eldest child is war-mongering and sports obsessed, the second kid is in love with all things animal/superhero and the two youngest are 5 and 4 year old girls who like...pink things. Anywho, as we were channel surfing I spied that some movie with talking apes was on and immediately yelled "let's watch that!" Everyone else decided they didn't want to watch that crap and my first chance to watch the original Planet of the Apes was quashed.
My next experience with the series was when I was 10 and saw the ending to the Tim Burton Apes film and I thought it was the coolest thing. It was only about 20 minutes of the film and I adored it.
Next came my first chance to watch a whole Apes movie from beginning to end. I saw Conquest of the Planet of the Apes when I was 14 and thought it was some awesome shit. Like, it was the seriously one of the coolest concepts for a movie I had ever seen (by this time I was something of a sci-fi/action snob already, so calling this old film good was pretty amazing) although the low budget for the movie was obvious, it was well acted and well scripted. Then I saw War of the Planet of the Apes and turned it off halfway through because I realized how downhill it was going. I decided to check out the Tim Burton one for realz and see if I would actually like it. Suffice to say it did not live up to expectation, especially after remembering how epic it felt when I was ten. Then again, Batman & Robin still felt kind of epic when was ten, so no surprise there. I felt let down by all of the films but Conquest to the point where I didn't even want to see the first 3 movies.
Now, it's 2011 and I'm 18 years old. I first saw the trailer to Rise of the Planet of the Apes about three months ago and I totally freaked out. I could tell, this was going to be the movie that would live up to my expectations for this series. This was gonna be the movie that all the others should of been. And I was damn right...
Review of Rise of the Planet of the Apes along with my other feelings on all things simian will be posted tomorrow, cuz I am damn tired.