Enders Game (2013)

Ender's Game poster.jpgGame of Drones

The International Military seek out a leader who can save the human race from an alien attack. Ender Wiggin, a brilliant young mind, is recruited and trained to lead his fellow soldiers into a battle that will determine the future of Earth.

Controversy surrounded this film prior to it's release, due to the controversial views of Orson Scott Card, writer of the book this film is adapted from. The best thing to do when viewing this film is to separate those outdated views from the film, as they have not one bit of significance to anything in the film.

The film is at it's best when it raises thought provoking questions, relating to the nature of war, and how the way the war is won is just as important as actually winning the war. Asa Butterfield gives an astounding performance, showing a bright future to come for this young actor (who slightly resembles Malcolm McDowell).

Sadly, the rest of the performances are a mixed bag. Harrison Ford is great as the puppetmaster, manipulating Ender for his own gains, while Viola Davis does well as the counterpoint to Ford's gruff manipulator. Regrettably, Ben Kingsley fails to leave any impression, Moises Arias feels miscast as the tough leader of the Salamander Army, Hailee Steinfeld is given little to do and the rest of the cast are just forgettable, like their characters. The only thing you'll really remember about the characters is how odd their names are, as opposed to their actual names.

"Lucas is a liar, I shot first!"

The effects are competent enough, but they can't help the unexciting scenes of action. The script is problematic, having plot holes (what's the reason for the kids being chosen to fight in the wars?) and dropping a sub plot about Ender's siblings, which seems like it'll go somewhere when it's introduced early on. Plus, the film fails to explain a number of moments, such as a video game that peers into Enders mind and the importance of him being a "third", expecting the audience to go along without needing the explanation. Also, one particular twist is far less shocking than it's made out to be, thanks to the overall screentime and importance devoted to 'simulations'.

With a better script and a better cast, Enders Game could've been a futuristic science fiction film with something more important to say, perhaps a PG-13 film akin to Starship Troopers. Sadly, it falls short, leaving a largely forgettable 2 hours.


Myerla said…
The issue is not his views per say, but the fact that the author actively funds such anti-gay organizations. Money from the box office takings may seep into such groups.
James Rodrigues said…
Well if thats true about the takings, thank goodness I didn't pay to see this.