War for the Planet of the Apes

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Monkey business turns deadly serious in this climactic installment of the rebooted film franchise based on the work of French science-fiction author Pierre Boulle (1912-1994) and directed in 3-D by Matt Reeves. An epic battle is under way between the super-sentient simians and what's left of the human race after a devastating epidemic. When the erudite ape leader (Andy Serkis) suffers a personal tragedy, he puts aside his peace-loving ways to seek revenge on the leader (Woody Harrelson) of the human army. Accompanying him on his journey are a trusted orangutan adviser (Karin Konoval), a mute human girl (Amiah Miller), and a clownish ape (Steve Zahn). Regrettably, the spiritual messages are mixed; while the apes espouse winning Christian values of peace, love, and family, there's an anti-Christian theme in the evil human leader, who wears a cross around his neck, displays one in his quarters, and gleefully announces that he is waging a "holy war."

 

Watch out for: Frequent stylized violence, two uses of profanity, and a subtle anti-Christian message.

 

Rated: A-III, adults; MPAA: PG-13

 

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2017