07 July 2014

Ender's Game (2013)

If you don't want to read it all:
Score: 6/10
Verdict: Would have been better as TV series since it could explain some things better.

I've heard of this movie just because Harrison Ford was in it. That and futuristic space combat were enough to watch it. After watching it I read a bit about its origins and found out it was made after a book. Series of books actually. And that explained a lot because there was so much compressed into just two hours...

Ender's game takes place on future Earth that recently survived an attack from an alien species known as Formics, highly advanced ant-like creatures. Pure luck and bravery of a single pilot (think of the destruction of the Death Star) ended the war and drove Formics back to their home planet. Now, 50 years later, humanity is preparing for another invasion and is using a brand new tactics - recruiting and training of children with very high IQ and warfaring talent - to lead Earth Fleet and defeat Formics forever. Ender Wiggin is one such child and he is being sent to Combat School on a base in Earth's orbit under the supervision of Colonel Graff and Major Anderson.

Ender's Game seems like a two hour long trailer for a 10 hour movie. With mega spoliers. Well, spoilers that actually show all the major scenes, including the grand finale. Seriously, only after finding out it was made after a book I finally realized why everything was happening so fast. Poor little Ender goes from one school to another, from one combat team to another in a matter of minutes. Just imagine a season of Game of Thrones compressed into 60 minutes only! Some may like such a tempo, but I personally prefer a bit more depth.

Ender's game reminded me of other movies and computer games in many ways. Formic invasion and destruction reminded me of Independence Day and Star Wars. Formic tactics reminded me of... Starcraft and Zerg! Oh yeah, Protoss as well since both sides use carriers with hundreds of drones. Damn, I hated those Protoss carriers in Starcraft multiplayer. Harrison Ford reminded me of Malcolm McDowell in Wing Commander 3. The movie may have been influenced by those, but the book itself is older than all but Star Wars.

Overall, the movie isn't bad, but it's far, far from being a masterpiece. It's great if you like a movie that moves fast and doesn't take time to explain just about anything but those really crucial things (so you know what the hell is going on). Other than that... if they realize the true potential we could expect a reboot and a trilogy (at least) in a few years. Until then, I expect this movie to go by almost unnoticed. 

No comments:

Post a Comment