So how much do you want to bet that director Wes Ball knows exactly how to, uh, keen can fans be on social media these days? Almost immediately after bringing up “Star Wars” to describe his latest film, the filmmaker goes out of his way to reassure potential viewers: “We didn’t make fun of it, or Disneyify it, if I may say so! But we got it there brought a more youthful spirit.” This spirit may well shine through main characters like the ape Noa (who, many speculate, may or may not be a direct descendant of Caesar) and the young human character played by Freya Allen , which, based on the trailer, seem destined to crossover. Nonetheless, Ball continues to view Mel Gibson’s 2006 film “Apocalypto” as inspiration as well, so we’re safely expecting a film which will feel right at home with the existential musings of the rest of the series.
Another big question mark hanging over “Kingdom” is when exactly this story takes place. The official synopsis details that it takes place “several generations in the future after Caesar’s reign”, which Ball echoes here:
“I wanted to take a big leap forward in time. It’s quite significant that Caesar is still a spirit in the film, but most of his living relatives are not in this picture. If the last three films were in Stone Age, we get here to see what happens when they enter the Bronze Age.
This seems to match the more talkative, dressier, and slightly more advanced monkeys on display in the trailer. Either way, consider us intrigued by whatever Ball has up his sleeves here. “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” hits theaters on May 24, 2024.