Matt Reeves: Strong Parallels Between Caesar and The Batman

There are some universal themes that occur across different genre of films. Whether they be a billionaire playboy by day and masked vigilante by night, or an intelligent ape preparing for a fight to the death against the human race. That is what filmmaker Matt Reeves has discussed with the Los Angeles Daily News this week.

Prior to the July 14 release of War for the Planet of the Apes, the third in the highly successful 20th Century Fox rebooted franchise, the director outlined where the central protagonist is at in the new installment, emotionally and psychologically.

“It’s an epic challenge for Caesar, because he is filled with empathy, and yet the events of the war are so dramatic and the apes are taking so many losses that he starts to, for the first time in the franchise, lose his empathy for humans,” remarks Reeves.

Tortured Souls Looking For A Path of Righteousness

Caesar Batman

Starting out with nothing but the best of intentions, Caesar in many ways mimics where Bruce Wayne is at for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Broken down by endless villainy, corruption and death, both characters are pushed to the brink.

Reeves draws a comparison between the two as he is quizzed about transitioning from one major action series to DC's The Batman with Ben Affleck.

"It's a strange thing to be involved in the two franchises which were the two that I was connected to most as a child," he explains. "I just was obsessed with Batman when I was a kid. What I find so interesting about him as a character is that, as far a superhero goes, he's not superhuman, he is a person. And he is a tortured soul who is grappling with his past and trying to find a way to be in a world that has a lot that's wrong with it and trying to find a way to reconcile all of that. That is a really powerful character, in the same way that Caesar is such a powerful character."

War Extravaganza A Drama At Core

War for the Planet of the Apes Teaser Trailer Screencap

With the magic of CGI, capturing the human characteristics in the other species is easier than it has ever been. From Reeves' point of view, that allows him to tell a personal story as much as setting up an epic showdown complete with explosions and gun battles.

“I have a great love for these characters, and I really do think that this franchise is so unique. You have photo-real, emotive apes who are your main characters, and the spectacle is an excuse to tell a great drama that you couldn’t do otherwise. A lot of other franchises are nothing without explosions and action. This is a war movie, of course we have that kind of spectacle, but really in the forefront it’s about these relationships. I’ve been a huge Planet of the Apes fan since I was a child, so to be in this world is something I never would have expected to be doing, and I really see it as an incredible opportunity.”

Source: Los Angeles Daily News

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