Review: Battleship

Good day all, It’s the Angry Systems Administrator with another movie review. This time it’s Battleship, and I’m afraid the earlier reviews were accurate. It’s been torpedoed, down by the bows and is slowly foundering in an ocean of low box office receipts.

I went to the Anger Central Official Entertainment Center, more commonly known as Chunky’s, and had no problem getting in. There was a large line, but that was for the Avengers, which was seen and reviewed by the Blithering Moron Angry Webmaster a couple of weeks ago. I also saw it a few days later.

Battleship is based on the Hasbro game of the same name. It’s been around in one form or another for decades. It begins with a big announcement that scientists may have found life bearing worlds and that they will be sending them a signal. You then go to another scene with two brothers celebrating the birthday of one of them. The birthday boy is a typical slacker1. He decides to hit on this smoking hot blonde2 who has just walked into the bar. One thing leads to another and the slacker ends up breaking into a convenience store to get a chicken burrito for her. He doesn’t steal it, but leaves money behind. Of course, he is breaking, (A lot), and entering so he ends up getting tasered. His brother3, who is an officer in the US Navy forces him to enlist hoping this will clean up his act. It doesn’t.

Frankly, the first 20 minutes was a waste. Yes, you are introducing the characters, but it wasn’t done very well and was boring. I’m going to jump ahead a bit.

Our two hero’s are now officers in the Navy. (How the slacker AKA Alex Hopper, got a commission is beyond me) the older and more responsible of the two, Stone Hopper is commanding an Arleigh Burke class destroyer. The younger one, Alex, is the Tactical Action Officer on board the John Paul Jones. (He runs the weapon systems) He’s also engaged to the smoking hot blond, Samantha who happens to be the daughter of the admiral in command of the pacific fleet4. See how ridiculous this is?

Anyway, there is a gathering on the USS Missouri5 in Pearl Harbor. Alex shows up late with Samantha and makes an ass of himself. The gathering is to honor the ship and all the men who served on her over the decades. Later, the fleet is at sea and about to commence The RIMPAC wargames. While at sea, Alien ships enter Earth’s atmosphere with one of them colliding with a satellite and crashing into Hong Kong. The remaining ships come down off Hawaii. Three destroyers, (With our heroes of course) are nearby and move to investigate.

Now, just prior to this, Alex has been read the riot act and told he will be discharged from the navy on his return from the exercises. Needless to say he isn’t in a good mood. Anyway, the task force arrives at the scene of the splashdown and starts looking around. Nothing is showing up on radar but lookouts can see something in the water. Alex is sent out in a small boat with two others to investigate. No one knows what this thing is.

Alex and the others get close and Alex climbs on to the object, he wonders around and touches one of the sides. He gets hit with a massive jolt and thrown into the water. The John Paul Jones fires a warning shot and the aliens open fire on the Jones. While this is going on the aliens generate a force field around the Hawaiian islands, cutting off the islands and the three destroyers from the rest of the fleet.

Now the fun begins. The aliens respond to the warning shot by firing on the Sampson, damaging it. Alex is back in the small boat which opens fire on the alien ship with a Dillon Minigun.6 The aliens try to target the small boat but they duck under the hull. Meanwhile the Sampson and the other destroyers open fire on the alien ship, damaging it. They return fire and blow the Sampson out of the water with no survivors. Alex gets back aboard the Jones and finds out he is now in command. He promptly attacks the aliens and in the ensuing battle the Japanese destroyer is sunk. Alex wants to continue the attack but is talked into rescuing survivors.

Meanwhile the aliens have attacked Pearl Harbor and wrecked all the helicopters and the Marine base. They’ve also landed a force at the NASA site where the original signal was sent so they can “Phone Home.”

Alex fights the Alien support ships after figuring out a way to track them using Tsunami warning buoys.7 They’ve determined that neither side can see the other with their sensors and have to use line of site. Using the buoys, they are able to track the aliens and open fire with guided missiles, hitting and destroying two of the three remaining support ships.

Meanwhile, Samantha, who is a physical therapist working with wounded vets, has taken a depressed double amputee, Lieutenant Colonel Mick Canales,8 on a hike towards the NASA array. The see the alien lander scream past and as they are trying to figure out what it is, the local police arrive, block the road and tell them to leave. Of course they don’t, especially since Mick wants to see the aliens. The cops are ambushed and killed. The two scientists at the site are also attacked and one is killed and the other runs away.

Mick and Sam find the wreckage and bodies. Mick tells Sam she has to go and get the keys to the jeep parked up the road as a road block so they can get away. One of the aliens comes by and just as Sam is about to be discovered, the alien is distracted by some horses, allowing her to get away. The next scene is Mick and Sam going through the jeep. Mick finds an M4 rifle and is preparing it. The surviving scientist stumbles on the pair and is nearly shot by Mick. The scientist is NOT what you would call over-endowed with courage. Craven coward would be a better phrase.

The trio figure out that the aliens want to call home for reinforcements. The scientist admits he has a way to call for help and Mick forces him to go get his radio. After soiling himself when one of the aliens catches him, the scientist returns with the radio and Sam makes contact with the Jones. She quickly explains that the radio array had to be destroyed.

Meanwhile, Alex and the captain of the now sunk destroyer devise a plan to lead the remaining alien ship into a location where they can blind it in the morning sunrise and destroy it. Alex and the other captain use .50 Barrett rifles9 to shoot out the windshields. Since they determined the aliens can’t handle our bright sunlight, they are blinded. At that point the Jones opens fire with everything they have, The aliens return fire with these pinwheel things that chew their way into the hull. The Jones fires torpedoes and as they are sinking the alien ship explodes.

The survivors make it to lifeboats and head into Pearl. Since the alien ship with the force field generator is still out there, and they also need to destroy the array, Alex needs to find another ship. Since all the ships are at sea and outside the force field, Alex decides to sue the USS Missouri. The survivors board the ship and with the help of some caretakers who were part of the original crew, they get the old girl underway.

As they leave Pearl, they discover the aliens have moved in closer to the island. Alex pulls a few maneuvers, and the battle begins. Early on, the after 16” triple turret is destroyed, but the two forward turrets pound the daylights out of the alien command ship. With only one round for the main guns left, Alex decides to fire on the NASA array and prevent the aliens from calling home, knowing that the Missouri will be destroyed. They fire the last round, destroying the array and just as the Missouri is about to be blown apart, the force field drops and the rest of the fleet engages the alien command ship, destroying it.

Now, for my criticism, of which there will be a lot.

There is so much wrong with how things proceed in this movie, I’m surprised the military had anything to do with it. First, Alex would not have been commissioned as an officer. No way, no how uh uh. The arrest for the Chick Burrito incident would have kept him out of the navy. In fact I think I will make a list of things that defy belief.

  • The destroyers almost never take evasive action.
  • The aliens only destroy Marine helicopters. What about all the other planes based in Pearl?
  • Liam Neeson is totally wasted in this film.
  • The military units on the island NOT moving out to attack the aliens at the array. While there may have been a major exercise underway, there would be no need to bring along a Marine Expeditionary Force. Unless a landing was planned, they would have been left at Pearl.
  • Reactivating the USS Missouri. This is NOT going to happen. The ship has been turned into a museum. All her weapons are deactivated and there is no ammunition in the magazines. All the classified equipment has been removed. There is no fuel on board.
  • It takes 2700 men to fight the ship. If I recall correctly, it takes over 100 men to operate each 16” turret. At best, they had 300 men on board
  • The old steam boilers don’t just fire up. It takes a fair amount of time, probably a couple of hours to generate enough steam to get underway.
  • Dropping the anchor and using it to swing the ship around while traveling at flank speed is a good way to lose the anchor.
  • There is no way sailors, even with the help of the old vets, are going to be able to fight the ship with no training on the old systems in place.

And that’s just the things I can think of off the top of my head.

Now the effects were cool. The Missouri scenes were done with CGI of course, but it looks like the artists used actual footage when generating the CGI. The aliens looked nice and alien. Brooklyn Decker is “Really” easy on the eyes. 😉

So do I recommend seeing Battleship? Not really no, at least not in the theaters. It might be good for children except for all the violence and death. No, I would wait until it’s on DVD or cable and then watch it. Critics have been saying that this is as bad as John Carter. I disagree. I liked John Carter and so has everyone I know who has seen it. I sort of liked Battleship, even with all the flaws. However, I’m afraid this movie is sinking rapidly.

That is all for now

~The Angry Systems Administrator~

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (2 votes, average: 1.00 out of 5)


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Battleship – Movie Review

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If they made a ‘Tetris’ movie, it would look a lot like this – Guyism

If they made a ‘Tetris’ movie, it would look a lot like this. May 25, 2012 3:15 pm. Naturally, with the advent of the Battleship flick, YouTube video makers have been churning out parodies, and this one for Tetris honestly doesn’t look half bad. — Fri, 25 May 2012 12:15:26 -0700

Review: Battleship / It’s Just Movies

Battleship” is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence, action and destruction and for language and is in theaters now. — Fri, 25 May 2012 11:59:26 -0700

Battleship | The Tolucan Times

Battleship Runtime 125 minutes. OK for children. Battleship. Now this is a movie! After suffering through The Avengers, I had despaired the future of the aliens-invade-earth genre. It seemed as if story and character development had been … — Fri, 25 May 2012 10:48:18 -0700
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  1. Taylor Kitsch []
  2. Brooklyn Decker []
  3. Alexander Skarsgård []
  4. Liam Neeson []
  5. USS Missouri, BB-63 []
  6. Minigun []
  7. Tsunami warning system []
  8. Col. Gregory D. Gadson USA Retired []
  9. M82 Barrett []