Rise of the Planet of the Apes set the stage for the eventual takeover of planet Earth by our simian relatives, and presented it in a way that removing humans from power didn't seem like such a terrible idea. Power corrupts, and there's no denying humans have been the ruling class for longer than we likely deserve.
Its sequel, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, comes 10 years after Caesar and his ape brethren escaped into California's redwood forest to begin their own society. As for the humans, they've had their population decimated by the “ALZ-113″ virus, which was intended as a cure for Alzheimer's, but instead proved lethal - whereas when apes are exposed to that same virus, it increases their intelligence.
Over the past decade the uneasy detente between the last surviving humans and the ever-developing apes has only become more tenuous and strained. And from all of the film's trailers, teasers, TV spots and more, war appears inevitable.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' latest TV spot (above) is all about selling the apes as a serious threat (as if there were lingering doubts after the last film). The spot's voice over makes a compelling argument, pointing out humans' power stems from our modern technology - something apes don't require, and which is very quickly becoming obsolete.
Also just released is a new featurette for the film in where director Matt Reeves discusses how he best used 3D in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes:
It's interesting to hear a director say the incorporation of 3D will enhance the film's emotional moments instead of simply being used for eye candy spectacle. Much of the first Apes film hinged on believing the emotional resonance from Caesar (portrayed though motion capture by Andy Serkis, who's reprising the role in the sequel). If Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' 3D immerses audiences how Reeves is intending, then that emotional connection should only prove that much stronger.
Lastly, in yet another international trailer (below) the uneasy peace between humans and apes continues to crumble:
Caesar - a child of both worlds having been raised with humans - is at the center of it all, and his decisions hold the answer to whether humans and apes will ever coexist harmoniously. As was teased at the 2013 Comic-Con, this second Apes film is very much a character driven drama, which seems to put the brunt of carrying the film's emotional weight on Serkis and his skill at emoting through digitally rendered characters. Thankfully, he's no doubt up to the task.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes opens in U.S. theaters on July 11th, 2014.