Humans Show No Mercy In New War For The Planet Of The Apes Trailer

We were hoping the apes and humans from the Planet of the Apes franchise could put aside their differences and learn to get along, but that doesn’t look to be the case.

This Friday, 20th Century Fox released a new trailer for the upcoming War for the Planet of the Apes, the third film in the Planet of the Apes film reboot series. Starring mo-cap master Andy Serkis as Caesar, a hyper-intelligent ape who becomes involved in a human vs. ape battle for dominance, War for the Planet of the Apes takes place two years after 2014’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Woody Harrelson also appears in the film as the Colonel, the leader of the human army that wants to defeat and eradicate their simian adversaries once and for all.

And based on the trailer, it sounds like the Colonel has absolutely no sympathy for his jungle-dwelling enemies, despite Caesar’s insistence that he “did not start this war” and is fighting “only to protect apes.” Many have already likened Harrelson’s merciless character to Marlon Brando’s fear-inducing Kurtz from Apocalypse Now, and quotes like “there are times when it is necessary to abandon our humanity to save humanity” certainly make it hard to argue with the comparison.

The trailer features two characters who are new to the rebooted Planet of the Apes franchise. The first is Bad Ape (Steve Zahn), a zoo escapee who appears to be a little more street-savvy than his fellow primates. In the trailer, Bad Ape insists that humans get “sick” and apes get “smart,” prompting humans to want to kill the apes and prevent them from becoming as smart (or even smarter) than they are.

The second new character is Nova (Amiah Miller), a young girl who befriends the apes. It appears that Nova will be a sort of emotional centre for the apes, and that her connection with the apes will make it more difficult for them to slay the opposing human army without remorse. As fans of the Apes franchise may have already guessed, the War for the Planet of the Apes Nova is the same Nova (played by Linda Harrison) that appeared in the original Planet of the Apes film from 1968.

The Matt Reeves-helmed War for the Planet of the Apes is the first film in the Planet of the Apes reboot franchise to feature more identifiable ape characters than human ones. With that in mind, the Colonel’s declaration that humans and apes must be at war because the “law of nature” dictates it may cause viewers to question whether that “law of nature” really is an inevitable, unchangeable force or something put in place and perpetuated by humans themselves.

War for the Planet of the Apes opens in theatres on July 14. Check out the trailer below: