With every superhero more celebrated than Amazing-Man or The Chameleon already spoken for (ditto for hot toys like Transformers), Hollywood has fallen back on popular games as likely fodder for action epics. If "
As its north-of-$200-million budget indicates, "Battleship" has been expanded considerably from its origins as a pre-
The infusion of all that cash notwithstanding, "Battleship" plays ordinary and pedestrian because it was always a job for hire, never anyone's passion. Powerhouse toy-maker
The only person who was avid about anything is Berg, the son of a naval historian whose unbounded enthusiasm for all thingsU.S. Navyled to exceptional cooperation from that branch of the military. That zeal, however, also unbalances the film, turning it into something of a earnest, two-hour infomercial that should do wonders for naval recruiting if not civilian entertainment.
Front and center is
Said woman, Sam Shane (
While these dubious shenanigans are going on, something called the Beacon Project is playing out in the background.
In fact, these other-worldly types from Planet G leave no doubt as to their intentions by launching weapons that look like enormous fiery ball bearings intent on shredding everything in sight.
Right in their line of fire are the Pearl Harbor-based Pacific fleet vessels that the Stone boys (as well as gunner Cora Raikes, played in a pleasantly feisty debut by
Though they have impressive weapons and the resources to make the journey to Earth, these humanoid aliens are as ungainly as the movie itself, clunking around in awkward, protective suits. Once revealed, their prominent chin whiskers make them look like surly Amish farmers upset at a barn-raising gone wrong.
In a logical world, these folks would be so technologically superior the Earth would be toast. But of course a way has to be found to give humanity a fighting chance, a way that turns out to be fully in keeping with Berg's sentimentality about theU.S. Navy. It's all very earnest, but it's not a whole lot of fun.
'Battleship' -- 1 star
MPAA rating: PG-13 for intense sequences of violence, action and destruction, and for language
Running time: 2:11