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Customer Review

312 of 368 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Join the Navy, save the world, get the girl and have a chicken burito!, April 30, 2012
This review is from: Battleship (DVD)
This film has for only purpose to entertain us and in this aspect it is highly succesful. The main hero is very likeable, the leading girl charming, the display of military hardware impressive, the aliens naughty (and ugly and stupid!), the scenario doesn't make much sense, the CGI effects are EXCELLENT, US Navy is the best, US government is incompetent - in one word, everything is as it should be in a movie made to go nicely with your popcorn on a Friday evening. WARNING! Some SPOILERS incoming at six o'clock!

The main hero, Lt. Alex Hopper (Taylor Kitsch) is a troubled young man who after messing up a lot in his early life finally joined the US Navy and by some extraordinary miracle managed to become an officer in charge of weapons on board of USS "John Paul Jones", a very powerful destroyer of "Arleigh Burke" class. He is however poorly noted by his superiors and is generally considered as a disappointment and a failure. The unexpected alien invasion during a naval exercice will suddenly force him to take command ("Who is in charge now?" "Hopper!" "We are so dead!") and lead his men into a particularly deadly fight against a vicious and resourceful enemy.

Other than his messy life style Alex Hooper has also another "problem" - his gorgeous, sculpturally beautiful girlfriend Samantha (Brooklyn Decker). She loves him, he loves her and they are engaged to be married - but her father hates his guts and for reasons which you will have to discover yourself his agreement to their marriage actually matters...

Other characters are also important: Alex's brother, Stone Hopper (Alexander Skarsgard) who is the older, responsible and organised version of Alex; Vice-Admiral Shane (Liam Neeson), tough, impressive commander in chief of US Pacific Fleet; Japanese Navy Captain Nagata (Tadanobu Asano), commanding the Japanese destroyer "Myoko" and Lt. Colonel (Retired) Mick Canales (Gregory D. Gadson), a bitter US Army veteran who lost his both legs in one of recent American wars.

Rihanna makes her movie debut in this film, as Petty Officer Cora Raikes, a weapon specialist and crew member on board of USS "John Paul Jones", serving under Alex Hopper orders. She has a lot of screen time and she is VERY good! I was very pleasantly surprised by her acting and I am looking forward to see her in more films.

The display of modern weaponry is very impressive. 5-inch guns and 20mm Phalanx CIWS (Close-in Weapon System), "Harpoon" missiles and 324 mm torpedoes of American and Japanese destroyers are used generously and they give a great show. And once the old battleship USS "Missouri" enters in action with her 16-inch big guns, things get even better!

The aliens are very very agressive and naughty - although to be fair, they seem to avoid the colateral damage as much as possible, by sparing the obviously harmless oponents. They also try to rescue their own soldiers taken prisoner, which is something not so frequent in SF films. Other than that they are the "standard issue" aliens: ugly, hostile, technologically advanced in some fields but limited in others (they do not seem to grasp fully the concept of guided weapons) and last but not least abysmally, galactically, terminally stupid! BUT, in this film it actually is an asset, because it allows USS "Missouri" to engage the alien flagship in a way which reminds of the bloody and dramatic fight between HMS "Victory" and "Redoutable" at Trafalgar...

The scenario doesn't make much sense as for the reasons for this invasion which seems ultimately to be just a reconnaissance. The reason for the attack on Oahu island and the whole battle around it are even more ludicrous - as for the whole "saving the world" thing, let's just throw a veil of silence on it... A civilization able to send a scouting military expedition of five ships through interstellar space, can always send a second one, stronger and better prepared. So, there is a possibility of a sequel.

The CGI effects are really EXCELLENT! Alien ships and weapons are very well done, fights are very "realistic" and visually the film is a big success.

All fighting men and women of US forces (and the one lonely Japanese guy) are shown as heroes fighting to the end at the best of their capacities, engaging enemy with missiles first, handguns second and iron bars and bare fists after that, if necessary. In contrast, the US government is (of course!) completely incompetent, which is only normal, considering that it is chaired by a Secretary of Defense played by Peter MacNicol (yes, you read well!).

So, all in all, it is a rather succesful, quite entertaining film, with lots of good special effects, lots of good fights, two well playing hot chicks (Brooklyn Decker and Rihanna), some handsome men, a very stupid scenario, quite a lot of humour, at least one very touching moment and one very VERY dearly paid chicken burito...))) I had lots of fun watching it, although I am aware of its weaknesses - and I think that if all you need is some harmless entertainment, you will like it too. Enjoy!
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Showing 1-10 of 34 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 22, 2012 8:31:13 PM PDT
C Savage says:
Very nicely written comment. I've seen the movie and it gave me a pleasant laugh for you to end talking about that dearly paid burrito!

Yes the CG was excellent except for the bridge collapse scenes, obviously CG then, but the ships, aliens and effects were otherwise believable.

The fact that the aliens shot over-sized guns w/o missile technology is laughable, but I guess we did have to have some kind of chance. Also strange how their munitions spun in the air, but always hit point forward, odd to say the least.

Posted on Jul 17, 2012 7:08:51 PM PDT
Ryan Smith says:
I must admit..your review is excellent! The only thing missing was a comment on the films score. It is one of the best in a while. Sure Avengers is up there but there is something about this soundtrack that just fits well. My favorite is "The Art of War" wich was used during the final battle. Listen to it and tell me it doesn't make you want to go out and hijack a ship just to fight something! Its smart, engaging and fits this popcorn movie that is very underrated and under appreciated. Qapla!

Posted on Aug 27, 2012 7:53:01 PM PDT
Donna S says:
This was suppose to be a review on how well the movie was made. Not a scene by scene review which told me everything about the movie. You should have labeled this review spoiler alert!!!

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 28, 2012 1:35:28 AM PDT
Maciej says:
Dear Donna

you are of course right - my bad. I included a spoiler alert as you suggested. And once again sorry for having revealed too much without warning. I hope you can forgive me.

Best regards

Posted on Aug 29, 2012 11:22:10 AM PDT
J. S. says:
As an ex-Navy officer, I compliment you on your review. For me this is the best Navy movie since "Top Gun" and every bit as much fun. Well done, Peter Berg - your movie is indeed "squared-away".

Posted on Aug 29, 2012 3:42:50 PM PDT
w. mycroft says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

Posted on Aug 29, 2012 8:02:34 PM PDT
G. Cousins says:
I think the attack on Oahu was because it was in the sphere. Their mission seemed to be to power up, create a impenetrable energy sphere, then control the area within it. Hopper and other ships were inside the sphere, as well as Oahu. IMO! Obviously if they had visualized this it would make much more sense. Just like in Prometheus, thinking about the loose ends is entertaining and frustrating at the same time.

Also the enemy targeting thing one of the japanese officers aluding to the fact the enemies couldn't target them. I took it as just his thoughts at the time, but it would explain why the playing field was so even. Also, I found the enemy's attempt to only attacks threat being their undoing amusing! lol

As far as battleship 2? IMO the only response for the aliens would be to send a much greater force, which would win. So no sequel would be realistic.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 3, 2012 4:47:55 PM PDT
Jas B says:
"So no sequel would be realistic"
NOW you want to talk about realistic? C'mon, the writers and producers can come up with something. It wouldn't have to be any more realistic that B1, would it? Might generate a little more pucker before we finally pull off a win this time, though.

Posted on Oct 7, 2012 1:02:10 PM PDT
The central problem of all these alien invasion movies is as Mr. Maceij points out - the improbability of an intergalactic civilization having any trouble with the conquest of Earth. A really plausible movie would be a very dull and short movie. Real invaders could just make a local stop for some asteroids. Or having studied our biology, they could just drop a thermos bottle full of some super virolent germ. There are almost no scenarios in which the Earth and its people would have any sort of chance against a hostile extraterrestrial invader. There is one however in print. There is a Niven-Pournelle novel which posits a race of stupid elephant-like invaders. Good read. But in the movies we need to see red-orange explosions, crashing machines, and human heroes who beat the snot out of the ugly starmen in hand to hand combat. This film provides that sort of thing in spades.

So just put your brain in neutral and enjoy the damn movie!

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 22, 2012 9:00:31 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 22, 2012 9:01:09 PM PDT
Missy B says:
No realistic sequel? You didn't watch to the end of the credits then? :-)
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