Time Travelling on the Planet of the Apes - my definitive timelines of the original POTA series

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by Timeline Man, Aug 1, 2021.

  1. apesfan

    apesfan "Going Ape"

    The old adage was Taylor crashed on the north shore Long Island sound and trekked along to about Ape city in Westchester then went south along the cities edge and ended up between Brooklyn and New Jersey where the Statue of liberty is.
    Others say crashed in New Jersey and went east. Who knows.
    Look at Cornelius's map it looks like NY city and Long Island?
    Its all moot really. John M.
     
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  2. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI

    When I'm talking about the book, I use the 'Monkey Planet' title too.
     
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  3. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI

    The *story line* and *ideas* put forth in BATTLE are good enough, that of Caesar trying to build a new civilization, only to have it threatened from without and within-I can get behind the premise...

    However, its production values are almost nil, and it shows... The fact that J. Lee Thompson was able to make anything out of what he had to work with shows his skills as a director. BATTLE suffers in the budget department, and I've said it on elsewhere on these forums, but Claude Akins was *not* the right choice to play Aldo: He may have been an able character actor, and good at playing heavies in Westerns, but he just doesn't cut it as a Gorilla.
     
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  4. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    Even if the production values are "low", the movie looks wonderful. I love that cinematography, and the entire "B-Movie" feel.
    Aldo was a kind of anti-hero, and I think that Akins did a great job with the character.
     
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  5. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    Another further point showing that Caesar radically changed the timeline was the fact that his "Ape City" is located on the West Coast, as well as "his" Planet of the Apes.

    The mutants (The Blackmen) probably moved to the East Coast for some reason, in the original timeline.

    I guess that, by 3978, Apes and Humans would have expanded on the entire American territory, and so Taylor meets an East Coast Ape City in the new future too.
     
  6. apesfan

    apesfan "Going Ape"

    Even though it was filmed on the west coast it really wasn't to be the west coast, maybe.
    During the drafts of Conquest America was divided into Provinces like Canada. On the east coast a province went from Toronto to Washington DC and Governor Breck ran it.
    During Conquest Breck even mentions "the provinces" in the film, during the Armando (Ricardo Montalban) talk in his office he says " your circus travels mainly in the provinces does it not? " so make of that as you will. Take care, John M.
     
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  7. Jack Lord

    Jack Lord Forum Resident

    Location:
    Washington, DC
    I always wondered what the political system had become.
     
  8. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI

    I'm glad you enjoy BATTLE as much as you do... I like the film, but to me, it's definitely the weakest of the original five...

    Like J. Lee Thompson says in the BEHIND/POTA documentary, it's a shame they cut the budgets of each film, rather than trying to go bigger and better...
     
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  9. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    Yeah. CONQUEST is set in "Century City". By default, the POTA universe is alternate.
    I think that there are many arguments supporting both the theories. Drafts don't count, they are "transitional works". In the end, what you get on-screen is canon.
     
  10. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    Movie sagas were a novelty, back in those days. POTA was the very first sci-fi movie franchise, and a cultural phenomenon. They weren't able to realize that.
     
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  11. apesfan

    apesfan "Going Ape"

    Drafts do count. City was not specified - North America 1991- could be Canada?
    J.Lee Thompson, Paul Dehn, Frank Capra JR, and Roddy McDowall were definitely on the same page once the first shooting script got approved. They wanted a political, smart, antagonist, violent film with an African American point of view of the times. Changes were sometimes made on the fly and Arthur Jacobs had no problem with it.
    When the film was finally put together for preview the kids loved it but their uptight parents were offended. Conquest was to get an "R" rating - so the race was on to emasculate the film. To me being intimate with the Conquest story the preview version is canon.
    Its the only Apes film that changed in content and resolution of story to any other apes film. What that version is is what Conquest was supposed to be.
    Conquest was birthed as a bloody representation of the zeigiest of the times and after much editing and a change in tone provoked by unsophisticated viewers and top brass at Fox it all changed.
    Of course nowadays the PG Conquest is canon but for fans like myself who were there, and know the history of the Conquest Phoenix, Arizona preview edition , it IS the 4th Planet of the Apes film and probably the best of the lot. John M.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2021
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  12. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI

    I get what you're saying, but "Century City" was used because of it's look, and because it was close to home for shooting purposes.

    It's just supposed to represent any futuristic (at the time) city.

    In the novel of CONQUEST, doesn't it mention some sort of air cleaning, that made the air breathable again? I have no doubt that the NYC area has its smog issues, but I always think of LA/California when I hear about smog: That's one thing that I think could possibly set CONQUEST on the West Coast, but I have no definite opinion either way...
     
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  13. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    Problem is: TIME.

    ESCAPE is set in 1973.
    CONQUEST is set in 1991.

    You cannot get MASSIVE radical changes in such a small amount of time. They (the film-makers) did the right thing when they heavily "underplayed" the futuristic elements in CONQUEST on-screen. It's already a big stretch to think that Humans managed to import tons of Humanoid Apes from Africa/Asia and make them "domestic pets" for the society in only 8 years (1983-1991). Humans made people accustomed to the idea of using Humanoid Chimps, Gorillas and Orangs as "domestic slaves". That's way too controversial!
    If you think about it, CONQUEST should be set at least in 2001. At least...

    Drafts count only if you wanna get the "meaning" of some scenes in a more accurate way. What you get on-screen is CANON. The final work.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2021
  14. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI

    I don't disagree with you that CONQUEST should have been set later in time... The reason they pushed the time up so quickly was so they could use baby Milo (AKA Caesar) introduced in ESCAPE as the next film's protagonist/hero.

    What ever happened to Cornelius and Zira's history of apes having been enslaved for 5 centuries? That's certainly more believable than 8 years.
     
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  15. apesfan

    apesfan "Going Ape"

    It was speculated that the virus bought back by astronauts ended up being the virus bought back by Cornelius and Zira and that hastened ape mutations.
    The revolt in Conquest exasperated problems with society and nuclear war happened soon after so their was no 5 centuries later. A new timeline was created even though it pushed credulity so who knows.
    Ape history from Cornelius's time might be a little convoluted as is human's history to us in the present.
    I wish the science fiction could of been more sophisticated but the Apes films were more allegory and HG Wells than Arthur C. Clark. At the time these films were in theaters people couldn't of cared less. Remember critics in general, some prominent, were very positive about the apes films as a whole.
    We dissect movies now, its a different time for sure. John M.
     
  16. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    Yes, but Milo/Salomon/Caesar was just 18 years old in CONQUEST. Having him as a 30 years old Humanoid Chimp wouldn't make any difference to the plot... and that would also imply a longer timespan for the changes you see in society. Too bad they didn't go that route.

    ON THE OTHER HAND, according to PLANET, the Nuclear War occurred at the end of the 20th century --- if memory serves me well, that's what Cornelius hypothesized. So they (Dehn and Jacobs) just respected the canon established by the original 1968 movie.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2021
  17. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    No, the Nuclear War always occurred in 1993 or so, at the end of the 20th century. Cornelius was an archeologist, and he managed to study the ruins and come up with a believable datating system.
    So, even if CONQUEST is set in an altered timeline --- and not the original timeline whom Cornelius and Zira come from --- the writer (Dehn) was being consistent with the canon set in PLANET.
     
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  18. apesfan

    apesfan "Going Ape"

    I'm not a new timeline guy I'm just trying to make sense of a narrative that happened not because the filmmakers wanted to go that way but Fox wanted sequels with characters that were loved, Cornelius and Zira. Dehn did a great job and anything wrong or controversial about the sequels was out of his hands. His ideas were great. A former MI 5-6 for Great Britain in WWII, a poet , a great writer, did some James Bond and other Spy films etc.
    Its movie making and its a convoluted path especially at a time when films were mostly made on the cheap. All this when, why, how it happened is secondary to the characters and professionalism of all involved.
    In my case it was the Apes music that initially made me a fan, then all the rest, especially that ending in Pota68.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2021
  19. apesfan

    apesfan "Going Ape"

    Paul Dehn was an incredible man. As I posted above he was an incredible poet that subsequently got him the screenwriting job for Beneath. He had an almost irrational fear of nuclear war and the mindset that could initiate it.
    His WWII service was invaluable to all and his "Goldfinger", "Spy who came in from the cold", script ploishing, "Apes" was important.
    Their was a documentary about him, which is rare, and how he overcame his homosexuality and also being Jewish and becoming a Major in the British via Canada military intelligence services.
    Very little is available or known about the man or his service. He also had a hand in the story of "Tinker Tailor Soldier spy" decades before the film. Even photos most of the time aren't even of him.
    Just an amazing patriot and he had an incredible empathetic mind and more should be known about him, or maybe not?. John M.
     
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  20. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI

    But did they really? 3978 in PLANET is suddenly 3955 in BENEATH when it easily should have been 3979 by that point. And also in PLANET, Taylor and company's original mission was to be a one way trip, not to return to Earth at all, and then in BENEATH, they make it out like Taylor's mission was supposed to be a trip to space and then a return flight back, with Brent and the Skipper having been sent out to see what happened to Taylor & crew.

    In BENEATH, even though Zira and Cornelius *did* learn about Man's origins and downfall, Zira still carries on with her work of experimenting on Humans, even though she knew what they once were and should have changed her career to something that didn't include "animal" experimentation.

    And the whole thing in ESCAPE describing how apes became the top species: In PLANET, Cornelius and Zira are clueless, with anything they are saying being speculation on their part, they really don't even surmise that Man was top dog at one time, Zaius does, but C&Z don't. The only way they'd have any knowledge of it is if they were listening to Zaius and Taylor's back 'n forth about Man having been there first... Then all of a sudden in ESCAPE, it's written as though they knew everything about Man's downfall the whole time-And while it's not said directly, they make it seem as though Man's downfall was something taught to their offspring in school. I mean in PLANET, Cornelius and Zira are so clueless about the origins of Man that they were thinking there was a 'missing link' between Ape and Man. Yet, in ESCAPE, it's all "Oh we know Man once ruled over us, but boy did our ancestors show them a thing or two when they revolted and it was so great that our species even commemorated the events because it was so important to us..."

    And again, the kicker is that Apes were supposed to have been enslaved for five centuries-The way that Cornelius and Zira describe that part, it's not just some number they pulled out of thin air-It's an actual time frame they were told. I know their history could have some mistakes thru the years, especially if it was all oral history until it was documented in the Scrolls, but an almost 500 year gap doesn't get changed that quickly.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2021
  21. apesfan

    apesfan "Going Ape"

    Oh sure thats it. It has to be all feasible. And the earth is 5400 years old according to the old testament?? The Apes historically are as messed up as us humans.
    These movies are allegories not sci- fi in its purist form. When I was kid I would fret about the incongruity on these so called histories too.
    At least the plague is true, Hasslein was mentioned in Pota68, shows up in Escape. There was an Aldo as mentioned buy Cornelius in Escape and actually there are two-one in Conquest -the chimp getting the S$$$tt beaten out of him on the steps when Caesar says his infamous line- and Battle ofcourse.
    In reality it probably is poor draftsmanship . Mort Abrahams (Beneath) and his butting in probably caused many errors.
    Ships date meters can realign from 3978 to 3955 or just be in error from Taylor's ship to Brent ship then Taylor's ship corrected itself when low tide hit dead lake and his ship reappeared. Who knows, who cares really. Nobody I even knew over 50 years ago caught these mistakes, only me.
    There was a gap in time of some months where Zaius could of leveled with Cornelius and Zira since they did prove in a way that "Man was here first".
    -Escape was based on religious tales of a savior from the sky saving the downtrodden -Apes.
    -Conquest was based of the inequality and inequity of a slave class and an allegory of the Watts riots.
    -Battle was the hard start of Apes Eden.
    Maybe a parallel universe. Taylor is sent by "ANSA" and His ship returns in Escape to what is now "NASA".

    Or maybe Im wrong?;)
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2021
  22. Grand_Ennui

    Grand_Ennui Forum Resident

    Location:
    WI

    In reality, I think that *is* the reason.
     
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  23. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    We can assume that the "EARTH TIME CLOCK" of Brent and Skipper's ship stopped at 3955 AD (error), but in truth they reached the Planet of the Apes in 3979 AD. Occam's razor.

    About the history of the original timeline, Cornelius mentioned that he found out some SECRET SCROLLS (I assume that this happened inbetween PLANET and BENEATH, 12 months or so) where he was able to learn the secret history of the Planet of the Apes.

    What I was talking about was PLANET and the internal canon of PLANET, where Cornelius (an archeologist) established that the fall of the "previous civilization" had occurred 2000 years before. At the end of the 20th century, so CONQUEST and BATTLE are 100% consistent with this.
     
  24. Timeline Man

    Timeline Man Time Traveler from Naples Thread Starter

    Location:
    Naples
    The "Aldo" mentioned by Cornelius comes straight from the SECRET SCROLLS. It's a true historical figure of the original timeline.

    Aldo - Baby Name Meaning, Origin and Popularity

    Aldo #2 was a chimp. We can assume that Aldo #3 named himself "Aldo" to honour the ape who died. Despite him being a gorilla.

    ANSA is a subsection of NASA.
     
  25. apesfan

    apesfan "Going Ape"

    I like your rationale and conclusions.
    One of the reasons I had some forum problems with the old yahoo site was we all 'wasted' a lot of time doing what we're doing here. I was wrong!
    I wanted to go into films/ audio instead I went into Government.
    I liked the more technical if you will of the Apes films. The music, how Jerry Goldsmith used 12 tone serial style, Tom Scotts fusion of jazz, jungle drums and military rhythms etc. Bruce Surtees use of low angles and no lighting and blah blah...
    The themes of nuclear devastation were ever present back then and as a boy the Apes films were a cathartic release of those fears.
    Collecting posters, lobby cards, BxW stills, promotional materials was my way of Ape love and ofcourse getting audio recordings of the soundtracks tapped off the film projector and hard wired into a Panasonic semi- pro cassette recorder via my friends family who partly owned a drive in theater . Thats why I never was satisfied with the sound of Apes on all video.
    Enough about me.
    The fill in the blanks of Ape lore is cool but to me a waste of time. Im not being insulting, if it wasn't for true fans like yourself I'd be talking " to myself" instead of writing"about myself" for the last 5 decades.
    I want total 4k remasters by persons who care!
    Keep up the good fight, John M.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2021
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