There is still, we’re told, a contingent of old-school SAG conservatives who are again determined to ixnay a CG-augmented Andy Serkis performance in the realm of Best Actor nominations. His latest and greatest, I mean. The unqualified raves for Serkis’ Caesar in War For The Planet of the Apes make this alleged SAG recalcitrance and obstinacy seem all the more embarassing. SAG naysayers can dismiss or marginalize Serkis’s soul-stirring performance but critics and ticket buyers know the truth of it, as history soon will.

Wake up, Academy and guild members — great acting is great acting. Filmmaking in 2017 is ten times more digitized than it was ten years ago, and 50 times more than it was in ’97 and so on. The bouquet of roses and aroma of strong coffee is in the air. You can’t continue to say “what coffee smell?” year after year after year. This is reality, Greg.

“Andy Serkis’s performance as Caesar is one of the marvels of modern screen acting…the motion-captured, digitally sculpted apes [in War] are so natural, so expressive, so beautifully integrated into their environment, that you almost forget to be astonished by the nuances of thought and emotion that flicker across their faces.” — from War review by N.Y. Times critic A.O. Scott.

“If he weren’t acting with dots on his face to be replaced by a detailed computer simulation of an upright chimpanzee, it would be all but impossible to deny Serkis an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor.” — BFI critic Kim Newman.

“Serkis has invented an entirely new medium of performance — one that pushes the series into a realm that would have blown poor Charlton Heston‘s mind even more than a half-buried Lady Liberty.” — Barry Hertz, Globe & Mail.

“Serkis is brilliant and memorable and sometimes absolutely heartbreaking as Caesar.” — Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun Times.

“The grave and eloquent chimpanzee leader played by Andy Serkis is another seamless melding of digital expertise and actorly soul. By now Serkis’ work as Caesar exists in a realm beyond praise or even measurable achievement; you feel this character’s goodness, but also his roiling internal conflict, in his every digital atom.” — L.A. Times critic Justin Chang.