A witty, ironical tale a la Voltaire, full of sharp views about the relationship between men and animals. Boulle depicted a world where humankind has lost its position at the dominant species and apes rule over human savages. The story is set in the year 2500. In the spirit of Gulliver's Travels, a French journalist travels to another planet, where the apes are intelligent and humans are exhibited in zoos. The book differs in many ways from the film. When Boulle wanted to question our superiority above other animals, the film reveals in the climax the past and destroyed glory of the humankind, symbolised by the ruined, half-buried remains of the Statue of Liberty.