Battleship: Movie Review
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Battleship is another science fiction, war movie about an alien invasion of Earth, but it is based on the old board game by Hasbro. The Navy setting also helps make the movie more unique. There are some corny, predictable moments, but the movie comes together in the rousing, patriotic second half. However, there’s plenty of foul language and intense action violence, so caution is advised, especially for younger viewers.
The story opens with Navy Commander Stone Hopper celebrating his long-haired younger brother Alex’s birthday with a cupcake in a bar near Pearl Harbor. Stone is a little upset that Alex lacks direction in his life.
Several years later, both men are in the Navy. Alex has even become a Lieutenant, and Stone is now captain of a ship. The U.S. Navy is doing a huge exercise with 14 other nations. The nations are celebrating the maneuvers with a friendly soccer tournament. The tournament turns out not so friendly for Alex, who gets accidentally kicked in the face by a Japanese captain, Yugi Nagata. After the match, Alex and Yugi get into a fight on a ship and are reprimanded. This puts a halt to Alex’s plans to ask Samantha’s father for her hand in marriage. In fact, Alex is now in danger of being discharged by the Navy.
Everything comes to a halt, however, when a scouting team of alien spaceships land on Earth after being attracted by an ill-conceived NASA-engineered signal into outer space looking for aliens. (For more, go to movieguide.org. Beware of spoilers).
Once it gets going, Battleship is a lot of turbo-charged fun. Despite a couple corny moments and some possible plot holes, it’s a strongly patriotic story that teaches lessons in bravery, maturity and humility. At one point, a humbled Alex realizes he has to defer to Captain Nugata’s experience. This sequence also turns out to include a clever, suspenseful homage to the original board game invented by Hasbro. Battleship also has an inspiring sub-plot where Samantha and an injured soldier have to help delay the alien platoon working at the satellite array. Finally, the ending has a wonderful homage to previous generations of Navy sailors, especially the average, courageous sailor who makes things run smoothly in times of war.
Thus, Battleship has a very strong moral, patriotic worldview that’s exciting. There’s even a reference to America’s motto, “In God we trust.”
That said, there’s plenty of foul language in Battleship. The action is also intense. Alex and Samantha have a lightly sensual kissing scene, but that’s as far as it goes. These things warrant caution, especially for younger viewers. Also, a couple uncompleted “f” words may find their way into an unrated version of the movie on the eventual DVD, so MOVIEGUIDE® advises parents to be on the lookout for that.
NOTE from Dr. Ted Baehr, publisher of Movieguide Magazine. For more information from a Christian perspective, order the latest Movieguide Magazine by calling 1-800-899-6684(MOVI) or visit our website at www.movieguide.org. Movieguide is dedicated to redeeming the values of Hollywood by informing parents about today's movies and entertainment and by showing media executives and artists that family-friendly and even Christian-friendly movies do best at the box office year in and year out. Movieguide now offers an online subscription to its magazine version, at www.movieguide.org. The magazine, which comes out 25 times a year, contains many informative articles and reviews that help parents train their children to be media-wise consumers.
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