Planet of the Apes

Question: At the end he sees the Statue of Liberty on the beach. How did the statue get there from Ellis Island?

Answer: He's in the same location as Ellis Island. Thousands of years have resulted in significant changes geographically.

Answer: The statue was destroyed during the nuclear war at some point in the past. The remnant of it had washed ashore to where Taylor finds it.

Bishop73

Chosen answer: Dr. Zaius did know the true history of man and ape, but he deliberately hid the truth from the other apes. For Zaius (and other high-ranking apes who were guarding the secret), it would be shameful and demoralizing to ever admit that humans were far superior to apes in the past and that they could, potentially, conquer the apes. In more than one scene (such as the paper airplane scene in the first film), we see Zaius obviously frustrated that Taylor's very existence threatens to expose the truth.

Charles Austin Miller

Question: Why do the humans in "Planet Of The Apes" all wear clothes? I am fully aware that the film was made in 1968, for a general release, permitting it to be shown in cinemas or on television, and 20th Century Fox would never have been allowed to make a movie in which humans all ran around naked. But, since the film is supposed to be set in a post-apocalyptic world, where humans have regressed back to being wild creatures, without language, lacking the skills to make or create anything, where do they get their clothes from? (And their clothes fit, too.) Did anybody ever come up with an answer to this, apart from the obvious reply that they wanted to get the film past the censor?

Rob Halliday

Answer: Unlike other primates, humans walk upright which exposes their genitals. They would instinctively cover them for protection. Humans also have very little body hair, so would cover themselves against the elements. Finally (spoiler alert) as these humans devolved from actual humans, it's likely something they did because their ancestors did it and it's been continued through the generations.

Answer: The humans have become mute, but not regressed to being "wild animals." The apes are the superior species but humans still have a high-level of intelligence, live in a complex, interactive social group, communicate non-verbally, and would have the ability to make simple tools and protective clothing. At the very least they would be equal to Neanderthals, but seem more advanced. The real answer is, of course, it's a 1968 movie when there were more stringent rules regarding nudity in films. If there was any, it likely would have been "X" rated, therefore limiting its audience and in which theaters it could have been shown in.

raywest Premium member

Question: Was Doctor Zaius really aware of what happened to the human race? Many times during the film, he does things that indicate such a possibility, like crushing the paper airplane.

Answer: Yes, he knows what happened and does whatever he can to suppress knowledge about it. He does not want his kind to know that humans were once far superior, which he believes led to their destruction.

raywest Premium member

Question: World War 3 may have been the reason for the nuclear war, but what caused World War 3?

Socks1000

Chosen answer: It's never stated what caused it (in this movie, at least). So much time has passed that historical records have been lost or destroyed, and the remaining humans are no longer literate, nor do they have any inkling about their species' past. The apes also do not appear to know the reason, only that mankind somehow destroyed their own civilization.

raywest Premium member

Question: What makes Taylor think they're on a planet in the constellation of Orion some 320 light years from Earth? How did he come to this conclusion?

Socks1000

Chosen answer: Because that's where the ship was originally headed. Some sort of malfunction made it turn around and return to Earth.

Grumpy Scot

Question: What caused the original nuclear devastation depicted in the movie?

Socks1000

Answer: I think that this is meant to be a mystery. Taylor/Charlton Heston, an astronaut, leaves a world set somewhat in the future after 1968 (when the movie was made) but still recognisable to cinema-goers at the time, to travel through a "time vortex" to arrive in a world in a distant future, which has changed beyond recognition. Taylor meets the orangutan Zaius/Maurice Evans, and Zaius hints that he has some idea of what had happened, but Zaius' knowledge is either limited, or else Zaius is not going to tell Taylor (or his fellow apes) the full story. At the end of the movie Taylor discovers that, at some point between his leaving his own time and arriving in the "Planet Of The Apes", the world had been devastated by a nuclear war, but I think that the exact time, causes of, and course of this nuclear war are deliberately left as a mystery. Sometimes I think a bit of unresolved mystery actually improves a story, and I think this is the case here.

Rob Halliday

Question: Why does it take Taylor so long for him to figure out he's really still on Earth? Shouldn't the fact that the apes all speak perfect English be a dead giveaway?

Answer: This is an issue with the "Planet of the Apes" films. The astronauts never question why the apes speak English, why all animals (like horses) are identical to ones on Earth, the vegetation is the same, the star constellations have not changed, etc. You really just have to attribute it to a "suspension of disbelief" where we are expected to accept the premise that the main character does not work out the truth until the big "reveal" at the end of the film.

raywest Premium member

Answer: At the time, it was a standard film convention to have the characters speak the language of the country that produces the film. Sure, they could all speak "ape", but that would have been an added layer of complexity (and pre-production) that just wasn't done in Hollywood at that time. Even most WWII films had the Germans, French, etc, all speak English. But to give an in-film explanation: he's on a planet where apes evolved from humans just like him, so maybe he just assumed that English had evolved there, as well. In a universe as vast as ours, it's actually a statistical certainty that English has independently arisen on another planet.

Continuity mistake: When the spaceship first springs a leak and begins to sink, the interior shots show it tilting to starboard; Taylor falls against the starboard bulkhead and the other two survivors need to brace themselves from slipping. All of the exterior shots of the ship show it level from port to starboard.

BocaDavie Premium member

More mistakes in Planet of the Apes

George Taylor: You Maniacs! You blew it up! Ah, damn you! God damn you all to hell!

More quotes from Planet of the Apes

Trivia: To help keep Heston from hurting his feet when running, he was fitted with rubber soles molded to look like bare feet.

Nicki

More trivia for Planet of the Apes

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