Battleship

"Very Good"

Battleship Review


You'd have to go back to 1998's Armageddon to find another film that so adeptly combines whopping apocalyptic action and corny save-the-planet heroics. Even if this feels like low-rent Michael Bay, it's a definitive popcorn blockbuster: a dumb movie that keeps us blissfully entertained.

Alex (Kitsch) is a smart guy who has wasted his life so, after getting in trouble while impressing a hot girl (Decker), his Naval-officer brother (Skarsgard) drafts him into service. Later on a Pacific Rim war-game exercise, Alex ends up in charge of the only ship nearby after aliens invade earth and put a force-field around Hawaii. Working with his plucky crew (including Rihanna, Asano, Tui and Plemons), Alex must figure out how to out-wit these Transformer-like killers. By the way, the hot girl turns out to be the daughter of the admiral (Neeson).

There's no actual wit on display; even references to the board-game source material are rather blunt. But the script is a cleverly assembled riot of cheesy comedy, macho action and contrived emotion, and you could sail an aircraft carrier through the gaping holes in the premise. For example, if these aliens are so technologically awesome, why hadn't they discovered Earth before we sent them a friendly "hello"? But if you stop to contemplate these anomalies, you might miss something terribly cool on-screen.

As the action set pieces escalate noisily, the above-average effects work and propulsive narrative keep us smiling. Watching a massive battleship skid sideways to a stop is pretty ridiculous, but we can't help but cheer. And as handy discoveries about the aliens help push the plot conveniently forward, the way they look inside their armour weirdly shifts the film into heavy-metal mode.

Physically, the cast is put through their paces. Kitsch has the muscly-scruffy charm we saw in John Carter (but a better haircut), while Rihanna proves that she can play with the big boys. Neeson doesn't have much to do beyond scowling from outside the force-field and adding a gruff presence to the romantic subplot as the vacuous Decker's dad. And director Berg keeps things charging full-speed, pounding us into submission with whizzy visuals, ear-pounding action and undemanding comedy. In troubled times, this could be just what we need.



Battleship

Facts and Figures

Run time: 131 mins

In Theaters: Friday 18th May 2012

Box Office USA: $65.2M

Distributed by: Universal

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 34%
Fresh: 71 Rotten: 137

IMDB: 5.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , , Brian Goldner, , Bennett Schneir, Scott Stuber

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Cars 3 Movie Review

Cars 3 Movie Review

It's been six years since the last Cars movie (there were two Planes movies in...

The Beguiled Movie Review

The Beguiled Movie Review

In her inimitable loose style, Sofia Coppola remakes the 1971 Clint Eastwood movie from a...

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

The surprisingly thoughtful prequel trilogy comes to a powerful conclusion with this robust, dramatic thriller,...

It Comes At Night Movie Review

It Comes At Night Movie Review

This sharply original horror film not only approaches its premise from an unexpected angle, but...

Okja Movie Review

Okja Movie Review

As Tilda Swinton reteams with her Snowpiercer director, Korea's Bong Joon Ho, it's perhaps unsurprising...

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

This may be the third reboot of this franchise in 15 years, risking audience exhaustion,...

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Actually the fourth film in the series (don't forget the prequel Minions), this animated super-villain...

Advertisement
Baby Driver Movie Review

Baby Driver Movie Review

Wildly energetic and so cool it hurts, this action movie has been put together in...

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

There's a clear sense that this Tupac Shakur biopic is hoping to build on the...

Hampstead Movie Review

Hampstead Movie Review

Deliberately appealing to older audiences, this undemanding comedy-drama comes with a hint of social relevance...

The Book of Henry Movie Review

The Book of Henry Movie Review

Apparently, this offbeat script had been making the rounds in Hollywood for some 20 years...

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to...

Churchill Movie Review

Churchill Movie Review

This drama about the iconic British prime minister tells a darkly personal story set over...

Gifted Movie Review

Gifted Movie Review

This is one of those films that dances right up to the edge of soapy...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.