The only thing I wanted out of this overblown, idiotic waste of
celluloid (and waste of space on a hard drive for the digital prints)
was for star Liam Neeson to bellow, "We sank their battleship!" These
guys couldn't even get that right! What's the point of making a movie
based on the game Battleship if you aren't going to have that legendary
line uttered? Why would Liam Neeson do this movie without being
promised that he could say it?
Taylor Kitsch (he of the massive 2012 bomb John
who might be trying to fire his agent as we speak) stars as Alex Hopper
- a down and out, unemployed slob of a dude with no sense of
responsibility and dedication who ends up joining the Navy (which might
happen in real life to Kitsch if he doesn't fire his agent). Of course,
the hottest woman on the planet, Sam Shane (Brooklyn Decker), happens
to be the daughter of his commanding officer, Admiral Shane (Neeson),
and she's madly in love with the dude (because gorgeous, model-looking
women always fall for the poor, slobby, unemployed dude with a criminal
During a massive naval conference featuring military from all around
the globe, aliens decide it is time to invade Earth, destroy Hong Kong
and set up some strange protective shield over Hawaii and much of the
ocean surrounding it.
Now, only the limited ships and subs in the water for some war games
are what stand between us and complete alien global domination (and, as
Hopper is one of those people, we could all be screwed).
Will Hopper, Shane and their fellow
sailors be able to stop the aliens?
Of course, you can't blame Kitsch for the mediocrity and disaster that
That lies at the feet of director Peter Berg and the writing team of
Erich Hoeber and Jon Hoeber (why did Erich steal that "H" from Jon?).
There seems to be absolutely no intention of telling a story. While
they throw in some subplots designed to be human stories to add some
depth to the characters, nothing in Battleship
is about real emotion nor humanity. This is about blowing stuff up in
the most unoriginal way.
is full of clichéd stories, overly simplistic dialogue and
more phony machismo than those moments when Ryan Seacrest and Simon
Cowell used to fight on American
Idol. However, Battleship
maintains a certain level of passability for about an hour until it
completely spirals out of control becoming sillier and more implausible
by the moment, no matter how much it tries to feel patriotic and
respectful of the military. All of that feels tossed in for cheap
appeal to the audience, instead honoring these heroes.
The only way Battleship
succeeds is in those moments when the movie tries to tip its hat to the
board game that gave birth to it. The explosive devices used by the
aliens look like the pegs you use in the game, which I thought was
perfect, and you have to giggle when the naval officers start to track
the aliens as if playing the game.
is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence, action and
destruction, and for language.