The Dual Narratives of the “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” in Cinema and Society

May 14, 2024


In 2024, cinema screens will once again be dominated by the primal cries and complex social hierarchies of apes with the release of "Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes." This latest installment promises to push the boundaries of the beloved saga further, blending breathtaking visual effects with poignant narratives that challenge our perceptions of culture, intelligence, and coexistence.


But as this fictional saga continues to evolve, a starkly different reality unfolds on the ground—highlighted by the harrowing documentary "(Non-human) Person", which exposes the grim plight of great apes living in captivity. Together, these films offer a profound exploration of the relationships between humans and our closest relatives, providing cinematic thrills while also compelling us to confront uncomfortable ethical questions.


"Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes" 


"Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes" picks up where its predecessors left off, delving deeper into the post-apocalyptic world where humans and intelligent apes are pitted against the backdrop of a struggling civilization. The enduring appeal of the series can be attributed to its ability to weave action-packed sequences with thought-provoking themes that resonate with contemporary societal issues. The new chapter is expected to explore themes of rebellion, freedom, and the moral implications of intelligence, further blurring the lines between man and beast.


three apes dresses

The saga has consistently mirrored our society’s struggles with otherness, power, and freedom, making each movie a thrilling escape and a reflection of our human trials. Fans can look forward to a new chapter that entertains and invites viewers to reflect on the implications of humanity's ongoing dance with nature and technology. As the apes' struggle for autonomy and recognition continues, the audience is compelled to question the ethics of domination and the rights of sentient beings, making "Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes" a significant cultural artifact in the landscape of modern sci-fi cinema.


"(Non-human) Person": A Documentary of Liberation and Rights


While "Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes" captivates audiences with its thrilling, dramatized portrayal of apes challenging human supremacy in a dystopian landscape, "(Non-human) Person" by directors Alejandro Cuéllar and Rafa G. Sánchez, brings us face-to-face with the harsh realities experienced by our closest primate relatives in today’s world. 


This compelling documentary available on Guidedoc, redirects the narrative from the fantastical battles seen in Hollywood to a poignant real-world crusade for the rights of two great apes, Sandra and Cecilia, who suffer under dire conditions within Argentine zoos.


a sad chimpanzee in the zoo

Central to "(Non-human) Person" is the valiant struggle spearheaded by Proyecto Gran Simio and a dedicated team of Argentine lawyers. Their mission is bold and fraught with legal hurdles as they push for the recognition of three fundamental rights for Sandra and Cecilia: the right to life, liberty, and freedom from torture.


They face staunch opposition from zoo authorities deeply enmeshed with animal trafficking mafias, turning this fight into a David versus Goliath battle where the stakes are the very lives and freedoms of these sentient beings. Amidst this confrontation, Candela, a resolute photojournalist, delves deep, gathering scientific, biological, and evolutionary data that underscore the profound kinship between humans and apes, challenging the moral paradigms that currently govern animal rights.


an orangutan smells a flower

As the narrative of "(Non-human) Person" unfolds, it delves deep into the ethical quagmires surrounding the personhood of non-human creatures. The film documents the intricate legal battles fought over the rights of Sandra and Cecilia, setting a precedent that could potentially alter how non-human entities are viewed and treated globally. It raises critical questions about personhood, agency, and the moral obligations of human societies towards other sentient beings.


The gripping documentary showcases the tireless endeavors of the lawyers and activists who navigate a labyrinth of legal and moral challenges, propelled by a belief in a shared bond that transcends species barriers. Their journey is marked by significant opposition from entrenched interests and the murky realms of the illegal wildlife trade, highlighting the complex dynamics at play in the fight for animal rights.


Through candid interviews, revealing behind-the-scenes moments, and evocative footage that brings the emotional and intellectual lives of Sandra and Cecilia into focus, "(Non-human) Person" does more than just tell a story—it sparks a movement. It invites viewers to reflect on the overlooked capacities of great apes, urging a profound reconsideration of rights, compassion, and coexistence in our shared natural world. This documentary is not only a call to action but a beacon of hope for advocacy and change, reminding us of the ongoing struggle for justice that bridges the gap between species in a shared ecosystem.


Ethical Reflections: What Fiction Teaches Us About Reality


a chimpanzee an eagle and a woman with long hair

The parallel narratives of "Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes" and "(Non-human) Person" serve as two sides of the same coin—both exploring the complex interactions between humans and apes, yet from vastly different vantages. The former explores these dynamics in a speculative future, making us root for the ape protagonists who challenge human supremacy. In contrast, the latter confronts the grim realities faced by real apes today, whose lives are curtailed by the species that fictionally battles for their rights and recognition.


neanderthal man

These films enrich the viewer's understanding and amplify the urgent call to action presented by "(Non-human) Person." As the movie entertains, the documentary educates and advocates, compelling why the fictional freedoms celebrated in "Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes" should be reflected in our treatment of animals in the real world. This juxtaposition not only enhances our appreciation for the cinematic tales but also serves as a potent reminder of our responsibilities toward other sentient beings sharing our planet.


Together, these films illustrate the power of film and documentaries to influence public perception and inspire change. While one entertains with its vivid depiction of a world turned upside down, the other provokes with its raw exposure of injustices that demand rectification. Both challenge audiences to rethink their role in either perpetuating or contesting the archaic views that lead to the suffering and marginalization of our planet’s sentient beings.


In the interplay of movie magic and documentary realism, there lies a powerful reminder of cinema's potential not just to depict other worlds but to reshape our own for the better. Whether through Netflix, YouTube, or GuideDoc, these stories are accessible to a wide audience, providing invaluable insights into the complexities of human-animal relationships. They remind us that in the vast cinema of life, the roles we play and the lines we draw are not just acts of creation but of conscience.


In the vast library of GuideDoc, viewers can find an array of documentaries that, much like "(Non-human) Person," shed light on pressing global issues and explore the complex relationships between humans and the world around them. GuideDoc is dedicated to offering films that provoke thought and inspire action, making it an ideal platform for those intrigued by the themes discussed in our article.


From the ethical treatment of animals to the exploration of human rights and freedoms, GuideDoc provides access to documentaries that continue the conversation started by films like "Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes" and "(Non-human) Person," encouraging viewers to explore these critical issues further.



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