I think php is kind of in a crisis right now (and I'm sort of talking through my rear, as I'm working on my first PHP project now). It seems like PHP is really simple. But a lot of folks talked down to PHP because it wasn't "object oriented" enough. So now PHP is trying to become what maybe it shouldn't be, a first class object oriented language. Or let me put it this way, hopefully it won't become a first class object oriented language at the expense of loosing its easy to use/easy to understand roots.
Anyway, I digress...
For those of you who just can't stand the fact that you don't have all the OOP and other "modern" features of other languages in PHP, check out the following PHP frameworks that extend PHP to support things like MVC, better OOP, and Active Record, to name a few. Here they are.
The Zend Framework http://framework.zend.com/
Code Igniter http://codeigniter.com/
If you have any opinions on which is better, I'd be interested. I will take one out for a spin on my second or third project.