When I first heard that there would soon be a film based on Batleship, the popular Hasbro board game, I had my doubts. Not only was there never a central plot within the game, but the concept was strikingly simple. How would they craft a story around each player calling out A-7? Sadly, my answer wasn't too comforting as Peter Berg using the game to offer up an alien invasion story that “uniquely” uses battleships in reference to Earth's last defense.
With a highly touted cast that includes Taylor Kitsch, Liam Neeson, Alexander Skarsgard, Brooklyn Decker, and the big-screen debut of pop sensation Rihanna, you'd think there was something to get excited about. And while the film does occasionally offer a worthy action sequence, Battleship rarely ventures below the surface.
The film, which runs a ridiculous 143 minutes, tells the story of small fleet of naval ships who must battle against the odds to secure Earth's mere survival. Sound interesting? Don't be fooled.
Other than taking an eternity to actually get going, Battleship fails to develop any of its characters as each is forced to deliver cliché dialogue as they go through meaningless motions, all of which leads to an ending that fits the generic formula of an alien invasion summer blockbuster to a tee. Sure, there were moments of intrigue. But each was heavily overpowered by those that weren't, leaving us shaking our heads as we accurately predict each moment long before the actions ever begin to take shape.
The C rating is solely in response to the special effects. I applaud the studio for refraining from the newly cemented 3-D craze—if only it had been cautious enough to say no to the entire project.