Just saw the new movie, The Rise of the Planet of the Apes. (Warning: plot spoilers follow!) Of course, it’s a silly movie, but very enjoyable–lots of fun to watch with the gorgeous California scenery, the expressions on the faces of the apes as they grew ever more intelligent, the clever references harkening back to the original Charleton Heston Apes movie.
In the end, the apes didn’t really want to kill all of humankind–they just wanted to be left alone to live. It was the virus that humans unwittingly developed that killed off human life (the apes were immune to it, and so survived).
Which brings me to a wonderful moment that happened in the theater. After the end, the screen went dark, the credits began to roll, and people began to stream out. Just then, the screen lit up again, showing the spread of the deadly virus over the entire earth. The audience stopped stock still–in the aisles, halfway out of their seats, standing in the stairways–all of their faces upturned toward the light, all of their eyes wide, all mesmerized by the story still playing out on the screen. I watched the reaction of the audience and loved every second of it!
And that’s the power of story! Isn’t it wonderful?