wogma rating: Watch if you have nothing better to do (?)
Battleship is based on a children’s game of the same name, created by toy-maker Hasbro. The game is a lot more stimulating though, where you get to scheme and decide who to place at war. The movie on the other hand, is a conglomeration of slow-motion alien-beating that isn’t even fancy; neither does it provide you with a sense of achievement. You’d be better off watching Director Peter Berg’s earlier venture Hancock.Read more
I walked out of Battleship this weekend wondering if we could ever create innovative alien-invasion movies. They’re so predictable I wish I were getting paid for my thoughts on what came next. In Battleship, the American Navy with all its machismo is our savior – protecting the world from the wrath of the extra-terrestrials. It’s ironical however, that they choose Rihanna to be on the posters of the film, while you have Liam Neeson (most noted for Schindler’s List) and Taylor Kitsch (X-Men and John Carter) playing more relevant characters.
The film begins with American scientists sending radio signals into space (thankfully it’s a tad more skillfully done than Koi Mil Gaya) in the hope of finding life in other planets. We all know that’s a wrong move – the chance of a blue cute thing with magic powers to appear is quite slim for a big-budgeted Hollywood film. In 3D. Long story short: Giant aliens arrive through the sea with massive transforming spaceships with the intention to invade Earth. It is then the responsibility of a small Navy team off the coast of Hawaii to save the world.
The team is headed by Officer Alex Hooper (Taylor Kitsch). Rihanna plays the arms officer on Hooper’s warship. She’s every man’s fantasy in that sense, (a portrayal which is definitely a problem) as she handles guns and screams out in authority every now and then. The problem is, we are given no back story to her involvement in the American Navy, or even reasoning to her brutal character. Actually, none of the characters have any inter-personal relationships as such. We keep cutting between their apocalyptic discussions and VFX-heavy action sequences.
Such films usually rely on their grand looking action. Battleship however, is just a lot boom-boom-boom. Too much noise, and mindless non-dramatic action. There’s no tension built up between the evil alien invaders and the courageous human fighters. Not even with background music, which seems such a staple in action-heavy films. Rihanna’s a plus in the film though, with her army clothes, handling the guns rather well. You’ve got to give her some credit for making her debut is such a mindless film, and makling it seem like she really bagged a role of a lifetime.
The last 30 minutes of Battleship is really what you expect from the film: unadulterated action with no build-up or logic to it. Loud background score, which induces no feelings in you, just makes you wonder if you’ll ever be able to hear properly again, and no sense of achievement whatsoever. Hearing a death-metal band vocalist scream would be a better exercise for your ears. My suggestion is, watch the film if you are nuts about Rihanna, or if you really don’t want to use your brains at all. But don’t curse me if you still come out having a sense of wasted time.
This review is by guest reviewer Swetha Ramakrishnan. Swetha Ramakrishnan is currently living and working in Mumbai. She's a self-confessed film enthusiast and can most likely be found talking to anyone and everyone about popular cinema and her love for SRK. Swetha Ramakrishnan also blogs at http://swetharamakrishnan.blogspot.com/.
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