Friday, February 15, 2008

Planet of the Apes - Good or Evil? You Decide!

But you’d better decide carefully, because an incorrect decision could mean that you are unfaithful and will spend an eternity in hell. I will not give you the answer because that would be deciding your faith in God, and one’s faith in God is the responsibility of that person alone. Do NOT take that to mean that we should not be able to impose Christianity on you! The authority to force people to behave in accordance with the tenets of the Bible is something that every moral government should have. The point is that we are not robots; we have free will. And our outward behavior does not determine the true faithfulness that resides deep down in our souls.

So, back to the topic at hand: Planet of the Apes. Not an actual planet, but a series of movies. And not the meaningless, go nowhere, imitation film from 2001, but the original groundbreaking movie series from 1967-1973, starring the great Charlton Heston – a great man of God and guns! Let us first explore these fascinating films in NO particular order. Let us start with the first film “Planet of the Apes.” At the very beginning of the first film, Charlton Heston’s character, Colonel Taylor, is on a fantastic voyage through space and time! Then something happens to the ship, and Col. Taylor and his crew crash land onto a very mysterious, yet familiar planet. Col. Taylor and crew wander through a desolate zone called “The Forbidden Zone”. Then they encounter dumb humans who behave in a very slovenly and primitive manner! Then they encounter a race of talking, highly intelligent apes, and an entire ape civilization not unlike human civilizations from days of yore! Then Col. Taylor and crew are taken prisoner by the apes, and treated very cruelly. The other members of the crew receive lobotomies and are experimented upon by cruel ape scientists, until they are literally walking zombies – more dead than alive. Col. Taylor is protected from these atrocities by 2 friendly chimpanzee scientists named Cornelius and Zira, who learn that he can talk. Dr. Zaius, chief ape scientist and Defender of the Faith, then puts Col. Taylor on trial for heresy. This is where the deeper meanings of the movie start to come to the surface. Dr. Zaius threatens to lobotomize Tayor if he doesn't tell the "truth" about where he came from. But Cornelius and Zira execute a plan to free Taylor. They flee to the Forbidden Zone where, a year earlier, Cornelius had discovered a cave with artifacts of a mysterious advanced society. Dr Zaius manages to find them. After a struggle, Taylor finds a talking human doll in the mysterious cave that proves that intelligent humans were on the planet long before the apes gained control. Dr. Zaius allows Taylor to escape on horseback, without further confrontation, knowing that Taylor will find "his destiny…."

Soon after his escape, in the final, iconic scene, Taylor discovers a corroded remnant of the Statue of Liberty buried in the beach. He realizes that he has been on Earth all along, and that humanity must have destroyed its own civilization in a nuclear war, thereby paving the way for the Planet of the Apes!

What to make of this fascinating, yet confounding film?? There are many competing themes that, at times, almost seem to contradict one another. The society of the apes is itself a contradiction: On the one hand, we have what is ostensibly an evil society that takes pleasure in murdering and mutilating innocent humans in the name of science. Yet, on the other hand we have a society that is ultimately guided by faith and faith alone – clearly a good thing! The faith of the apes is based on the “sacred scrolls,” and any scientific inquiry that may contradict the writings on the scrolls is deemed heresy. Let us turn this concept “on its head.” If, instead of a society of advance apes freely mistreating dumb humans and governing their society in accordance with the tenets of “sacred scrolls” (essentially the bible of the ape society in the film), we instead were dealing with our own advanced human society freely using apes and other animals for our own purposes, all the while governing our society in accordance with strictest interpretation of the Bible. There is no question that that is good – even glorious. It is an ideal our society must strive for. So, you may be thinking that the movie is Good, right?? NOT SO FAST! Remember, this is a society of advanced apes! Not Humans! Furthermore, the movie clearly aims to portray this society as cruel and unenlightened. Therefore, we have an ape society behaving in a manner that is, according to the film, unenlightened and evil because of their mistreatment of humans and because the tenets of their sacred scrolls supersede any real scientific inquiry. Does this imply that humans are wrong for mistreating apes and other animals in our real world? Does it also imply that societies who govern in accordance with the Bible are backward and unenlightened? I believe the film is implying that. Therefore, based on this analysis, you may think you can make the correct judgment as to whether the movie is good or evil. But there is more to this story! Remember, “Planet of the Apes” is a series of movies, and there are four more films in the series!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. Congratulations. Seriously. You guys are hilarious. I cannot imagine the level of dedication to write SO MUCH MATERIAL for a parody site.

...but really, I'm surprised so many people think you are serious, when it's so obvious that you're mocking fundamentalists (and/or trying to convince people they are all evil)

Anyway, you guys have seriously twisted senses of humor.

Your friendly neighborhood liberal pagan bisexual feminist.

1:05 PM  
Blogger Kalira said...

= Evil. Boring movie, and clearly stuff that I don't enjoy must be evil.

8:47 PM  
Blogger vron said...

why has it been so long since you`ve written?? COMEEE ONNNN. i want to watch women cry because of you lol.

<3 rock on.

3:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey you stoped posting...ahhh come on lets leave the village idot has stopped longer amusing

11:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are you serious?

If you are, you are insane, and must be locked up, although that would prove your point more.

If you aren't, then please stop and start contributing to the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster instead, which is a far better parody.

3:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wait! You wasted 30 minutes of my time! Can you just admit that you're not serious, just put a disclaimer up! And don't try to continue the joke by going "0MG T3H DEVIL MUST MAK U THINK IT ISNT SERIOUS!!!1!!!!1!1!".

Just finally admit it!

Here's some sanity:

3:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can somebody Digg or Slashdot this site?

3:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't be sure if you're a troll since I actually know a person like you.

3:14 PM  

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