A movie train-of-thought: Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes.

It’s 11:30pm and I just watched Jonah Hill’s new trailer “The Sitter.”

Wow, they really put a twist on Adventures in Babysitting. This trailer seemed like Seth from Superbad was grown up and now babysitting kids, but the marketing team behind that movie knows as well as I do that I’ll see it. Oh wow David Gordon Green directed it? Hmmm, I saw Your Highness and it was terrible, interesting because any stoner role is built for James Franco, well, that and any James Dean role.

I think about what I would have done differently with Your Highness for about 8 minutes. Then-

Oh! James Franco. Hmm let me check out his IMDB page-


Ah yes, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes.

I just told my girlfriend that I wanted to see this and she was a bit skeptical. We read the reviews of the film and it’s currently around 80 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. Wow, not so skeptical anymore. I go to arclight cinemas and purchase tickets that are 15 dollars each.

Holy shit! I really just paid 15 dollars for a movie ticket.

Not sure why this surprises me considering I’ve been going to the arclight for years now, I do anything I can to justify the ticket price.

Well I did just get arclight points, which means I’ll probably get free popcorn or something…right? Fuck it, the arclight is awesome. Lets not forget I’m seeing this movie in the Dome, what really compares to the Dome? Nothing. This is a capper to this summer, even though I thought Cowboys and Aliens was the capper, but this may be it… oh and 30 Minutes Or Less which is coming out next week, which may be the capper.

CLICK. I’m back on IMDB looking at random things about the Apes – The director, writer, and producer…

God, I hope these monkeys look real; you can be out of it in 2 minutes if the monkeys are on par to Ed starring Matt LeBlanc.

I laugh to myself.

Ed, that crazy movie about the baseball player monkey, what a interesting costume that monkey had, was there a midget inside that monkey costume? Who comes up with this?

For my own pleasure I was sure Ed had to be based off a comic book, because who would greenlight that movie? I typed in Ed and see that it isn’t based off of anything. I have to think that there was a moment in time when a conversation with Matt LeBlanc and Matt LeBlanc’s agent went a little something like this:

Matt: I want to get involved in movies, Friends is on of the biggest hits on NBC right now. Schwimmer is doing The Pallbearer with Gwyneth Paltrow, Perry is doing Fools Rush In with Selma Hayek… I want in.

Agent: You read my mind! But listen, they’re doing RomCom’s with leading ladies, what if I told you, fuck the leading lady, all I want to see is a leading man.

Matt: But, I’m not really a star, don’t I need a leading lady?

Agent: Monkeys.

Matt: Excuse me?

Agent: A fucking monkey. That’s your leading lady.

Matt: I like where this is going.

Agent: The same writer as Radio Flyer and The Sandlot just wrote a comedy about a baseball player named Jack ‘Deuce’ Cooper who gets stuck with a monkey and it’s actually a good pitcher, and through some problems, he makes you a better pitcher… And person!

Matt: You had me at Deuce.

6.2 million dollars later, Ed wasn’t a massive success.

Ed opened the can of worms into my monkey movie knowledge.

Can I think of monkey movies? Okay they don’t have to have the monkey in a starring role but it would at least feature a monkey. And here we go…

Ed: Tribianni as a ball player. See above.

Outbreak: Damn you little monkey that caused an airborne attack.

I’m convinced this monkey is the most successful primate in cinema history, seriously. There was a stretch when this little guy would pop up in anything that needed some really intelligent circus act or a quick laugh.

This movie by the way was pretty interesting and started the topic of conversation of “what if” – it’s basically a worse case scenario that nobody wants to deal with. Also, it’s interesting that this featured a solid cast – Hoffman, Freeman, Russo, Spacey, Gooding Jr., Sutherland, McSteamy I mean McDreamy I mean Patrick Dempsy.

Congo: RIP Michael Crichton. Like all books turned movie, the book was better, but that’s not saying much. I actually didn’t like either, and I really love MC.

This movie was essentially about a tribe of super monkeys living in… yes…. The Congo. A team heads out on an expedition to find another team and all hell breaks loose, monkeys go crazy and start killing humans, but in all fairness the humans intruded on their land.

12 Monkeys: Does this count? In all seriousness I don’t think so, but it’s a really cool movie.

In my opinion, this is one of Brad Pitt’s finer moments. He received an Academy Award nomination but truth be told it’s because he was snubbed by not getting a leading man nod for Se7en.

Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls: Bumblebeetuna. Remember the plot to this? No, not many do. But there were silverback gorillas and Ace had his trusty little monkey with him, which was the “Outbreak” monkey.

Not even monkeys could save Jim Carrey’s overacting in this movie. In hindsight I’m really disappointed with this movie. I loved it at the time because Jim Carrey was a driving force for me to want to enter the entertainment industry, he made movies fun but… shit… you know what. I won’t do it. I won’t bash this movie. All I’ll say is that part 1 was better (and a classic).

Aladdin: Sure, it’s cartoon, but Apu was in it! Aladdin’s right hand man and comic relief, one might argue he made this movie. All I really remember from Apu is his little hat and his momentary jealousy of the magic carpet. This is the point and perfect use of monkeys in movies.

Monkey Trouble: I was a kid in the early 90’s and I wanted a monkey. Part of the reason was this Thora Burch movie and the trouble she got into with her pick pocketing monkey.

This plays into the Aladdin angle. Comic relief, had a funny hat, and was your friend. The catch with Monkey Trouble was that this monkey was a klepto and kept stealing from everyone, but just when Burch thinks it’s stole too much, the monkey redeems itself at the end.

I just looked at IMDB – how is this 12,186 on the IMDB meter?

Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull: Otherwise known as “The Indy movie made 20 years too late and should have never been made.”

You may not remember the monkeys in this movie but I do, and it’s one of the few times I actually hated them. In the final climactic 3rd act Indys son (which he didn’t know) Shia LaBeouf is caught in a bit of a pickle. He’s lost in the jungle without any escape plan.

Enter the monkeys and a very very bad case of CGI.

Little monkeys lead Shia out of the jungle to freedom assisting him by swinging on trees through the top of the jungle and right into freedom. Lets take a moment and think about the conversation between the writer, George Lucas, and director, Steven Spielberg, on just how they wanted this whole thing to play out:

Steve: George, I noticed that you had this scene with Shia swinging with monkeys in the jungle.

George: Who?

Steve: Huh?

George: What?

Steve: Shia, in the jungle. Do you really think he could swing out of the jungle like that?

George: Would Ewoks save him?

Steve: Lets have him swing out with monkeys.

I may have preferred the Ewoks.

King Kong: Too Easy. Big ol’ monkey. This reboot was 3 hours total and I vaguely remember Jack Black.

Mighty Joe Young: See King Kong. Minus Jack Black.

The Ape: The what? The Ape. Let me copy and paste a brief plot summary below:

Human resources drone and put-upon family man Harry imagines he could be the next Dostoyevsky if he could just get a little peace and quiet. When he moves into his own apartment to craft his masterpiece, his solitude is broken by an unexpected roommate-a foul-mouthed, Hawaiian shirt-wearing gorilla, eager to share his opinions on life, love, and animal magnetism.

Bullshit, right? Wrong. The above plot was a movie written, directed, and starring James Franco. I’m not sure what he was thinking when he made this movie but I give him credit for trying to make it. Maybe he knew that tossing a monkey in a movie would be a sure thing? But to Franco’s credit he does a lot in his career that people question and he just goes with the flow.

Although I haven’t seen The Ape, I hope Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes is better.

I stop thinking about monkey movies for a bit because my brain is a fried and I’m not sure how many more monkey movies I can tackle.

However, I don’t think Apes is a monkey movie, it seems like an origin story, and I love origin stories. How could a movie about Monkey’s taking over a planet go wrong? It just seems so right. I think the bigger question is why do I keep calling Gorillas, Apes, and Chimpanzees – monkeys? I’m that guy whose just bunching primates together. I should know more about the monkey species. Wait, my thought is getting off topic, I need to reserve my seats for the movie.

If this movie is good I may rent Ed and The Ape and watch them back-to-back.