Sunday, May 20, 2012

One-Year Anniversary Review-athon: "Battleship"

    In the final review of the review-athon, as it turns out, movies based on board games were not a good idea. This is Battleship!

    Saying Battleship is based on the board game isn't quite correct. Sure the advertising and title want you to think so, but really they are just being used as excuses for director Peter Berg to make a big summer blockbuster based around the US Navy. And for what it's worth it's not a bad idea. I believe that any idea or property can, in the right hands and if given careful thought, be a great movie. So, making a movie off of a board game wasn't the worst idea. But when the trailers started to, well, suck, the entire world decided that Battleship was gonna suck too. And, for the most part, we were right.
    The film follows tough-guy-rebel Hopper (Taylor Kitsch, having a really bad year), who is forced to join the Navy by his brother (Alexander Skarsgard) after getting arrested. After saying goodbye to his impossibly hot girlfriend Sam (Brooklyn Decker), he set out under the command of Sam's father (Liam Neeson) and works with his fellow crew (Jesse Plemons, Tadanobu Asano and Rihanna in her first acting role). While out at sea, aliens attack and the Navy has to save the day. The premise is wildly absurd and not even the good kind of absurd. It takes itself way too seriously, combining the Michael Bay-brand bad jokes and military fetishism, into one big serious mess.

    It seems like Berg and the rest of the creative team behind the movie felt as if the only way they would be able to make a movie based off of a board game was to make it a big popcorn flick and to be honest they were probably right. Unfortunately, when it came time to decide which blockbuster movie they were going to emulate the most, they picked the Transformers movie because, hey, it's all Hasbro. It a shame the producers chose a movie series that brainless because when Battleship thinks, it's really smart. There is a scene where, in an effort to fight off the aliens, the crew of the ship actually play Battleship and in all honesty it's kinda genius. It's a lot of fun and actually pretty intense and exciting. The movie also brings in actually battleship veterans for the final fight and they are all kinds of awesome.
    However, the rest of the movie is the exact opposite. As cool as the Battleship scene was, it comes over an hour into the movie and what we are "treated" to before hand is pretty crappy. While Rihanna proves she can hold her own in a movie like this (And hopefully better movies), the rest of the cast are just okay and no one else really stands out. The action scenes are boring and the plot and writing is so laughably forced and silly it's kinda hard not to imagine if the filmmakers meant to parody the kind of summer blockbuster this movie is.

Next up from Hasbro: Chinese Checkers!
    Battleship is one of those movies were the cast and crew seemed to have more fun making the movie then the audience will have watching it. Sure, if you're a fan of the big brainless explosion-fests like the Transformers movies, then you'll probably like this. However, for everyone else, Battleship show some signs of genius. Unfortunately, it's buried under decent acting, bad writing and a formulaic plot. Battleship gets 2 stars out of 6.

And with that, Cinema Won's 1st year anniversary review-athon comes to a close. Thanks for reading, and as always, there will be more to come.

1 comment:

  1. Too bad the navy no longer uses battleships.

    Darn, my 1 year anniversay is June 28. What am I going to do?