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- 1970

Following the events of previous 'Planet of the Apes' movie, time-displaced astronaut George Taylor (Charlton Heston) and the mute human Nova (Linda Harrison) are riding on horseback through the desert of the Forbidden Zone.

Suddenly and without warning, walls of fire spring up from the ground and deep chasms open in the earth. Confused by the strange phenomenon, Taylor investigates a cliff wall and disappears before Nova's eyes.

Elsewhere in the Forbidden Zone, a second human spaceship has crash-landed after being sent in search of Taylor and his crew. Like Taylor's ship, it has traveled forward through time into Earth's distant future.

Two astronauts emerge whom are John Brent (James Franciscus) and the gravely wounded captain of ship, known only as Skipper, who soon dies from his wounds.

Brent reads the Earth year on his crashed ship as 3955 A.D., and he believes he has traveled to another planet, unaware that this is Earth of the far-future.

He encounters Nova still riding on Taylor's horse and notices she is wearing Taylor's dog tags, but he cannot get her to speak. Hoping Taylor is still alive, Brent rides with Nova to Ape City, where he is shocked to discover a civilization of bipedal, talking apes.

He observes the militarist gorilla General Ursus (James Gregory) leading a rally calling for the apes to invade the Forbidden Zone, conquer it, exterminate all humans, and use it as a potential food source, against the objections of the orangutan ruling leader Dr. Zaius (Maurice Evans) as well as the chimpanzee minority of Ape City.

Brent is spotted and wounded by a gorilla soldier. He is taken by Nova to the home of Cornelius (David Watson) and Zira (Kim Hunter), who treat his wound and tell him of their previous encounter with Taylor.

The two humans hide when Dr. Zaius arrives and announces that he will accompany Ursus on the invasion of the Forbidden Zone. Attempting to flee the city, Brent and Nova are captured by gorillas.

Ursus orders they be used for target practice, but Zira helps them escape. Brent and Nova flee into the Forbidden Zone where they hide in a cave which Brent discovers to be the ruins of the Queensboro Plaza station of the New York City Subway, sparking the realization that he has traveled to Earth's post-apocalyptic future.

Following a humming sound deeper into the underground tunnels, Brent begins to hear voices telling him to kill Nova. Entering the remains of St. Patrick's Cathedral, he finds a population of telepathic humans who worship an intact nuclear bomb.

Meanwhile back in Ape City, Dr. Zaius prepares to accompany General Ursus for the invasion by several armed gorilla battalions into the Forbidden Zone to exterminate any humans there.

They are temporarily halted by a peace protest by the chimpanzee minority whom the gorillas proceed to detain. As Ursus and Zaius lead the huge ape army away from Ape City into the desert, Cornelius and Zira plot their own excursion into the Forbidden Zone desert to look for Taylor's spaceship by the Dead Lake deep in the zone where he told them in the previous movie where he crashed it.

Back in the underground city, Brent and Nova are captured by the mutant humans and are telepathically interrogated. Brent reveals the apes are marching on the Forbidden Zone and will find their underground city.

Above ground, the telepaths attempt to repel the ape army when it arrives by using their mental abilities to project illusions of fire and other horrors, as they had done to Taylor and Nova.

Dr. Zaius sees through the illusions, however, and leads the ape army through to the ruined city. With the apes closing in, the telepaths plan to detonate their "Divine Bomb" as a last resort.

They hold a religious ceremony, at the height of which they remove their masks to reveal that their appearance has been grotesquely mutated by centuries of exposure to nuclear fallout.

Brent is separated from Nova and taken to a cell, where he finds Taylor imprisoned. The mutant Ongaro (Don Pedro Colley) uses his telepathic powers to force Brent and Taylor to fight each other to the death.

Nova escapes her guard and runs to the cell, screaming her first word: "Taylor!" This breaks Ongaro's concentration, freeing Brent and Taylor from his control, and they overpower and kill him.

Brent describes the bomb the mutants worship and Taylor recognizes it as a "doomsday bomb", capable of destroying all life on the surface of the planet.

The heavily armed apes invade the subterranean city, killing Nova and making their way to the cathedral, shooting, stabbing, and clubbing all the mutant humans they see.

They are confronted by Méndez (Paul Richards), the mutant leader who raises the bomb into activation position before being gunned down. Brent and Taylor attempt to stop Ursus from accidentally setting off the weapon, but Taylor is shot.

Brent manages to take a rifle off a dead gorilla where he personally kills Ursus and several of his gorilla soldiers before being overwhelmed and shot dead by the other gorillas.

The mortally wounded Taylor pleads with Dr. Zaius for help, but Zaius refuses, saying that man is only capable of destruction and that all humans must be exterminated.

In his last moment, Taylor defiantly brings his hand down on the activation switch, triggering the bomb, which detonates... thus wiping out all life on the planet.


The preceding film, 'Beneath the Planet of the Apes', ends with a nuclear weapon's destruction of the apes' future Earth itself and everything on it.

'Escape from the Planet of the Apes' begins by establishing that three chimpanzee apes, Cornelius (Roddy McDowall), Zira (Kim Hunter), and Dr. Milo (Sal Mineo) escaped the Earth's destruction by salvaging and repairing the astronaut Taylor's spaceship (which sank in the Dead Lake in the desert Forbidden Zone in the first movie).

They piloted it through the nuclear shock wave of Earth's destruction, sending the ship into space and through a time warp wormhole back to present day 1973.

The salvage, repair and launch of Taylor's spaceship apparently all happened (off-camera) within the brief period during the final act of the previous film. The three apes arrive on Earth, splashing down on the Pacific coast near Los Angeles.

They are found by the surprised local authorities and are transported to a secluded area of the Los Angeles Zoo, under the observation of two scientists, Stephanie Branton (Natalie Trundy) and Lewis Dixon (Bradford Dillman).

They administer a series of intelligence tests, which Zira performs unerringly, but she finally loses her patience at the end of the last one and answers Stephanie's question to Lewis with an angry retort.

Stephanie and Lewis step outside, completely astonished. Milo argues with Zira and Cornelius about their agreement to hide their ability to speak until they felt the time was right.

The argument agitates a wild gorilla on the opposite side of a set of bars in the cages. Milo steps too close to these bars and the wild gorilla reaches through them and strangles Milo to death.

Meanwhile, a Presidential Commission has been formed to investigate the return of Taylor's spaceship which was launched the previous year and how the apes, which they already are aware are atypically intelligent, came to be aboard it.

Cornelius and Zira are brought before the Presidential Commission, where they publicly reveal their ability to speak, and are welcomed as guests. They tell the commission about their planet in the future which is future Earth, about the apes way of life, but they deny knowing Taylor or anyone else that crash landed on their world.

Over the next several weeks, the two apes become celebrities, being lavished with presents and media attention as well as staying in a fancy hotel suite.

They come to the attention of the President's Science Advisor Dr. Otto Hasslein (Eric Braeden), who discovers Zira is pregnant and fears for the future of the human race after Zira had earlier told the commission about the growing dominance of apes to be set in the near future.

Determined to force the issue, he gets her drunk on champagne (which he assures her is harmless, calling it "grape juice plus"). The resulting interrogation enables him to convince the Commission that Cornelius and Zira must be subjected to more rigorous questioning.

Both chips are brought to a top secret military base are questioned using various means of interrogation; during this time, one of Hasslein's assistants refers to the apes as "monkeys", stirring Cornelius' anger. Hasslein defuses it, saying they simply want to know how apes rose in dominance over men.

Under interrogation, Cornelius reveals that according to the historic archive books and scrolls in their ape society of the future, the human race will eventually meet its downfall in the late 20th Century.

A plague wiped out all domestic cats and dogs of humans and humanity adopted apes as household pets which they turned into slaves.

A militant ape, known only as 'Aldo', led a slave revolt and the world was soon dominated by the simians, which will, many centuries later, lead to the surface of Earth's destruction through nuclear war and anarchy in the year 3955.

However, there are still suspicions about how humans are treated by the future apes when Cornelius and Zira continue to deny knowing Taylor or talk about how humans are treated in their world.

Suspicion had already been aroused by Zira letting it slip, during her drunken interrogation by Dr. Hasslein, that she had dissected humans in the course of her scientific work.

Hasslein orders Lewis to administer a truth serum to her, while Cornelius is taken to confinement quarters. Lewis warns Zira that the serum will have the same effect as the champagne Hasslein convinced her to drink earlier.

As a result of the serum, Hasslein learns for himself that Zira examined and operated on humans in the future and indeed knew Taylor as well as Barnes who also arrived on their planet.

Zira is taken to join Cornelius in confinement while the paranoid Hasslein takes his findings to the U.S. President (William Windom) who insists to the President that the apes are a danger to the human race.

A little later, an orderly bringing food refers to the unborn child as a "little monkey"; Cornelius has heard enough of the epithet and knocks the tray out of the orderly's hands and bashes him on the head with the tray, and uses this advantage to escape from the military base.

At first, Cornelius thinks that he has only knocked the orderly unconscious, but he is later stunned to overhear that the man died.

Hasslein uses the orderly's death and of Cornelius and Zira's escape as an illustration of the future danger the apes present and calls for the apes' execution. The president reluctantly orders that the unborn child's birth be terminated and that both chimpanzees be sterilized or killed.

Running for their lives, Cornelius and Zira (assisted by Stephanie and Lewis) find shelter in a circus run by a Mexican national named Señor Armando (Ricardo Montalbán), where an ape named Heloise has just had a baby.

There Zira gives birth to a son, whom she names Milo (later known as Caesar). Hasslein, knowing Zira will imminently give birth, orders a search of all circuses and zoos.

As a result, Armando must send the apes away. Armando, Lewis and Stephanie provide them with maps and help them plan to hide until such time as they can escape into the Florida Everglades to live the rest of their lives in peace.

In case they are discovered, Lewis gives Cornelius a pistol to use as a last resort. Zira asks to say goodbye to Heloise before they leave. Hasslein tracks the apes down to an abandoned ship in Long Beach harbor, and finds Zira resting with her infant.

Hasslein shoots Zira in cold blood after she refuses to hand over her infant and then proceeds to fire several shots into the infant. Hasslein is immediately shot to death by Cornelius, and falls overboard.

After Cornelius kills Hasslein, he is shot by several Marine Corps snipers and, as Stephanie and Lewis watch helplessly from the shore, falls to his death onto the poop deck of the ship.

Zira tosses her dead baby over the side of the ship before crawling to lie with her husband and dying by his side. But in the final scene in a surprising plot twist, Stephanie, Lewis and the other humans are unaware of the real fate of the infant ape.

Earlier, Cornelius, Zira, and Armando switched babies with Heloise before their escape from the circus. Armando now watches over the infant Milo as the circus is being moved to a new location.

Armando remarks how intelligent that the baby chimp is who will now survive with him at his circus. The final shot shows the baby ape Milo sitting in a cage, plaintively speaking the words "Mama? Mama?" with the voice of a human child.

Resources: imdb.com

POTA/1968 | POTA-Rise/2011


A ship in space, Colonel George Taylor (Charlton Heston) is at the controls. He's making a log entry about the journey so far.

Although nearly six months out from Earth since they took off in 1968; they have travelled 700 years into the future due to their faster than light speed through a wormhole.

Taylor takes an injection and returns to a stasis chamber to wait out the rest of the voyage with his three fellow astronauts.

As he sleeps the ship continues on before encountering a planet and crashes into a lake.

The ship awakens the crew, who immediately realize their situation. One of the four (a young woman) has died in stasis.

Suddenly one of the bulkheads collapses and the ship begins to sink.

The remaining three crewmen scramble to escape after being unsuccessful in sending a message to Earth. As Taylor leaves the ship he sees the ship's clock showing the year as 3978.

They have been in space for over 2,000 years, yet by traveling through a hyperspace wormhole they have aged only about 20 months, with long beards to prove it. The three men, Taylor, Landon (Robert Gunner), Dodge (Jeff Burton) take to a raft and begin paddling along the shoreline looking for a safe place to camp.

Taylor surmises that they are some 320 light years from Earth on a planet orbiting a star in the Orion system.

Landon calls him out on this information claiming Taylor didn't have enough time to read the tapes before their ship sank.

Coming ashore they take stock of their situation, they have food and water for three days and a handgun.

Taylor tells the others about the clocks and proof they offer about the theory of relativity.

Landon stops to plant an American flag before moving off.

They begin their journey in the rocky desert, around them unseen figures move across the cliff tops watching their progress.

Slowly the country changes and stray vegetation is seen. Passing an out crop they see wooden crosses planted in the ground resembling a borderline fence. Evidence something intelligent lives on the planet. Passing the crosses they see trees and can hear a waterfall.

Realizing they may survive, they take all their clothes off and go for a swim in the lake. Further along on a muddy bank they find footprints, which seem human.

As they investigate someone steals their clothes. The crew give chase seeing fleeting glimpse of humanoids through the thickening vegetation.

Working their way to a clearing they find a tribe of native men and women harvesting food from a tree. The humanoids freeze as a bizarre noise echoes over the area, the sound sends the tribe into a stampede.

The crew become swept up in the human tide and become part of the rout.

Ahead they hear horses and gunfire, the men change direction realizing it is a trap and they are being hunted by ape like creatures riding on horses. Landon is knocked unconscious and captured. Dodge is shot and killed.

The apes continue to herd the rest of the tribe into various traps till Taylor is shot in the neck.

As quickly as it began the hunt ends.

Dozens of humans have been captured, even more killed and collected as trophies.

At a clinic, ape surgeons remove the bullet from Taylor's neck and continue to treat him.

Doctor Zira (Kim Hunter), a chimpanzee scientist, wants Taylor kept alive so that experiments on his brain can be conducted. Taylor wakes later to find himself in a cage.

Zira visits to see how the captured humans are doing. She has given him the nickname 'Bright Eyes'.

Taylor tries to communicate but can't speak because of his throat injury.

Doctor Zaius (Maurice Evans), the orangutan Minister for Science, arrives at the lab to investigate the latest captured humans. Zira points out 'Bright Eyes' to Zaius, again Taylor fails to communicate. Zira is convinced of his intelligence but Zaius is unconvinced, and cautions Zira about her behavioral studies.

Taylor discovers that the apes, who can talk, are in control and are divided into a strict caste system: the gorillas as police, military, hunters and workers; the orangutans as administrators, politicians, lawyers and religious clerics; and the chimpanzees as intellectuals and scientists. Humans, who cannot talk, are considered feral vermin and are hunted for sport and either killed outright, enslaved for manual labor, or used for scientific experimentation.

Zira gives Taylor a human woman, Nova (Linda Harrison) and she is now assigned to his cage, hoping that she will mate with him. Days pass and Nova tries to bond with Taylor, but his own moral code stops him. Zira, becoming more excited by 'bright eyes' each day, invites her fiancée, Cornelius (Roddy McDowall) to the clinic see the progress she's made.

At an outdoor confinment area near a large cage where the humans are kept, Zaius meets Cornelius who is an archeologist and planning another expedition into the so-called 'Forbidden Zone' (the vast desert where Taylor and his crew marched overland from their crash site) search of artifacts.

During the conversation, Taylor attempts to communicate with them by writing a message in the dirt ground, but the other humans see this and wipe the marks away, impling to Taylor not to try to communicate with the apes. Then a fight between Taylor and another man breaks out. Taylor is removed by the gorilla guards to an isolated cage. However, Zaius discovers the message Taylor was writing on the ground and rubs it out before anyone else can see it.

Later, Zira gets close to Taylor's cage and he grabs her note book and pencil. Julius, (Buck Kartalian), the gorilla guard, enters the cage to beat up Taylor and retrieves the stolen items.

Zira notices that Taylor has written a note that she understands that says "my name is Taylor". Stunned she speaks to Taylor one on one, realizing he really is intelligent.

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POTA/1968 | POTA-Rise/2011

Time Travel Main

12 Monkeys

Donnie Darko

The Time Machine

Déjà Vu

Source Code



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