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18th May
2012
written by Adam

After sending an interstellar message to the nearest planet across the galaxy with conditions similar to earth, a bizarre fleet of intergalactic warships has arrived in the Pacific Ocean just off the coast of Oahu. Conveniently, Japanese and U.S. naval fleets are already located in the area to take part in annual naval exercises; now, what started out as a routine set of drills takes on a much more grave tone with implications that could mean world domination by these interstellar invaders. Will the Navy officer Hopper brothers (Alexandar Skarsgard, Taylor Kitsch) be able to keep their fleet afloat long enough to stop their challengers, and what do the invaders want with the communication towers of Oahu? And oh, what about Samantha Shane (Brooklyn Decker), will she ever get the chance to marry Hopper brother Alex, and what will her father Admiral Shane (Liam Neeson) think of the union? Based ridiculously loosely on the Hasbro board game of our youth, here’s an example of a film guilty of overcompensation. What do I mean? Well, for starters this beast clocks in at 2 hours and 11 minutes of runtime. For a film that really only needs to be about 90 minutes to entertain, it feels like the writers felt compelled for some reason to write about 6 billion subplots and sub subplots to make the film richer—this is a mistake. This superfluous exposition and pointless musing in hopes of confusing the audience further into believing they’ve seen a legitimate film speaks to the Shakespearian line “Thou dost protest too much.” Had the film just stuck to the basics, kept things simple, honest, and owned the fact it’s really a film about nothing I might actually have a little more respect for it in the morning. But let’s not stop there, no, there’s more! In fact, the film actually manages to cheapen itself one more by falling prey to the new breed of advertising, shoehorned product placement (Subway, Coke Zero, LG make that list). Audience members have already paid a zillion dollars to see this, and now you’re going to drive more ads at them with blatant product placement, yeah I know this isn’t the first time, and it won’t be the last time, but seriously Hollywood? Seriously? On the flip side, rock concert loud scoring and sound effects help cover some of the suck, and who doesn’t love watching things blow up so it’s not a total loss, just keep your expectations low and you won’t be disappointed. Maybe a matinee for it’s spectacle nature. Battleship is rated PG-13. p.s. despite its long runtime and my gripes, stay all the way through the credits hint hint.

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