There are no original ideas in Hollywood. We’ve covered this before. And yet, what is the difference between a remake and a reboot? Both have similar elements to their original source material, but a remake is a bit more true to the original than a reboot would be. A reboot usually takes a franchise in a bit of a different direction, either in style, plot, or both. When it comes down to it, if you’ve seen the original, you’ve probably seen the remake. However, if you’ve seen the original, the reboot may be a bit different than how you would remember it. Now, while not all remakes are bad, not all reboots are bad either. Although, I do question rebooting franchises within the same decade as their originals (I’m looking at you, Hulk and Spider-Man). Nevertheless, sometimes a reboot can be a good thing for a franchise, especially if the computer graphics have gotten to a point that some of the plot may be easier to convey than before. This week’s two films are the new beginnings of famous franchise series.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Length: 105 minutes / 1.75 hours
Planet of the Apes is one of the unique franchises that has both a remake (done in 2001 by Tim Burton) and a reboot. Everyone knows that the original Planet of the Apes was told from the perspective of humans. However, what if the story was told from the perspective of the Apes? Sure, the original had a lot of human persecution and mistreatment, but how did the world come to that point? What if the persecution was merely revenge for an old grudge held against mankind by primates everywhere? Sometimes all it takes to shift from a remake into a reboot is a simple perspective change. Of course, part of the reason behind a reboot is to create sequels, of which Rise of the Planet of the Apes already has planned. Expect the second film in this reboot series to come out in 2014.
We often take many things for granted. One is the advancements made in medicine. Certain drugs need to go through testing first before being approved for humans. Unfortunately, many animals are mistreated in this process, not the least of which are apes. When a chimpanzee known by the name of Caesar (Andy Serkis) shows a lot of promise for a brain-altering drug that could cure Alzheimer’s, the drug is quickly pushed forward without understanding all the side effects. Unfortunately, certain events occur that bring Caesar into some deplorable living conditions. While there, he uses his advanced brain power to start an uprising with the other apes that have been made captive. Of course, the escape of the apes is only the beginning as it soon becomes apparent that the drug that gave them intelligence has quite the opposite effect on humans.
Length: 126 minutes / 2.1 hours
Films from the Star Trek universe are an interesting set of films. While there have been many series based off of the adventures of the USS Enterprise, the films only really covered the exploits of two crews: one under the command of Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner) and one under the command of Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart). The series of “Deep Space Nine”, “Voyager” and “Enterprise” never saw the silver screen. Since it would be silly to go back and make films of these other series, the decision was made to reboot the original Star Trek with Captain Kirk’s crew. Of course, in order for it to be a true reboot, the timeline was altered somewhat from the canon of the TV series, which seemed to frustrate true Star Trek fans (or Trekies), while giving everyone else an exciting introduction to a well known science fiction franchise.
Star Trek follows the rise of James Tiberius Kirk (Chris Pine) to the position of Captain of the USS Enterprise. By all indications, Kirk is selfish and headstrong, but reacts well under pressure. Of course, he has a stellar crew to back him up, including Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy (Karl Urban), First Officer Spock (Zachary Quinto), and Communications Officer Uhura (Zoe Saldana), among others. After all, when you’re up against a time-traveling Romulan who plans to eradicate the Vulcans and who also killed your father, a Captain needs all the help he can get. Filled with great space battles, hand-to-hand combat, iconic one-liners, and doomed red-shirt crewmates, Star Trek is a great action film. I, for one, welcomed the sequel of this reboot, Star Trek into Darkness which came out a few weeks ago.
2 sum it up: 2 films, 2nd startups