Will Rodman (James Franco) is a San Francisco scientist who has been attempting to develop a cure for Alzheimer's disease by testing a genetically built retrovirus on chimpanzees. The virus mutates the chimpanzees, giving them somebody's level of intelligence. one amongst his check subjects, a feminine chimpanzee, goes on a rampage as a result of she believes her baby, to whom she secretly gave birth, is threatened. She is killed when disrupting a board meeting. Will's boss Steven Jacobs (David Oyelowo) orders subordinate Robert Franklin (Tyler Labine) to place all the check chimpanzees down, however he cannot bring himself to kill the chimpanzee's baby, and instead provides him to can, who names him Caesar (Andy Serkis) and raises him in his house. Caesar has inherited his mother's high intelligence, and learns quickly.
Three years later, can provides a sample of his cure to his father, Charles (John Lithgow), who is plagued by Alzheimer's disease. At first, his father improves however, 5 years later, his body's immune system fights off the virus and his dementia returns. In his dementia, Charles gets into his neighbor's automotive and damages it, angering the neighbor (David Hewlett). As he threatens Charles and pushes him down, the onlooking Caesar attacks him. when the incident, Caesar is forced to depart Will's house and is held during a San Bruno primate facility run by John Landon (Brian Cox). The apes are treated cruelly by Landon's son Dodge (Tom Felton) who works as a guard there. Caesar is initially treated poorly by each the workers and therefore the different apes. When Dodge brings his friends into the ability, one amongst them gets too near Caesar's cage and is grabbed by Caesar, who steals his pocket knife, later using it to flee his cell. Caesar then frees a gorilla named Buck and, along with his facilitate, gains dominance over the opposite apes.
Meanwhile, can creates a a lot of powerful kind of the virus to any treat his father and new tests on chimpanzees begin. Testing on a chimpanzee named Koba reveals that it strengthens the intelligence of the apes even any. However, it's fatal to humans, unbeknownst to the scientists. Franklin is exposed to the new virus and begins sneezing out blood. He accidentally sneezes on Will's neighbor, and is later found dead in his apartment. can tries to warn Jacobs against any testing, however when Jacobs plans to continue it, can quits his job.
Caesar eventually escapes from the primate facility and travels to Will's house, where he steals an airborne strain of the new virus and releases it throughout the cage space, enhancing the intelligence of his fellow apes. He beats Dodge down and, when showing his 1st capability of speech by shouting "No!" at him, electrocutes him by spraying him with a hose whereas his stun stick is activated. The apes at the ability escape into town, releasing the remaining apes from Will's former place of labor and from San Francisco Zoo.
The apes then force their well beyond a police blockade of the Golden Gate Bridge meant to prevent them from crossing. Jacobs arrives during a helicopter and one amongst his crewmen begins gunning down apes. Buck sacrifices himself to require down the helicopter, that crashes on the bridge, killing everybody within except Jacobs. He begs for facilitate, however his helicopter is pushed down into the bay below by Koba. The apes build it into the Muir Woods National Monument forest. can arrives at the forest and is attacked by Koba, however Caesar stops him from harming can. can warns Caesar that humans are sturdy, however tells him that he will shield him if he returns home. Caesar, currently capable of speech, tells him that "Caesar is home" within the redwood forest. Meanwhile, the virus liable for raising the apes' intelligence has started a world pandemic among humans.
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