Film Review: Battleship

There comes a time in everyone’s life when only trashy Hollywood nonsense will do. When that moment arrives, Battleship is the perfect watch.

Alex Hopper is going nowhere fast when his older brother signs him up to join the US Navy. Alex’s temper shows during an international naval games competition, and he fears for his future in the navy. Before his outcome is decided, an attack occurs during the war games exercise…

Peter Berg’s Battleship has several parallel’s with Michael Bay’s Transformers movies. Viewers could be mistaken into thinking they are watching a Michael Bay film, but for the lack of a slow-motion shot of the American flag. Battleship is also based on a Hasbro game, although it does not have quite the same animation heritage to draw from as Transformers did.

The plot of Battleship is slight to say the least. There is a little character development before the action commences, but this does little to make the main characters appear more three-dimensional. Instead, the audience is offered a handful of characters to root for, in order to humanise the action.

Dialogue is truly something in Battleship. There are some amusing lines during the course of the film. However, hilarity often ensues from the lines that presumably are meant to be serious. This adds to the overall enjoyment of the Battleship viewing experience.

Production values are pretty much faultless. Effects and production design are good, working effectively in the big set pieces. Some of the shots look as if they were meant to be filmed in 3D, with sharp angles  pointing in the direction of the audience. As it stands though, Battleship is a 2D film. The sound is bombastic, as expected from a blockbuster of this kind.

Kudos to the cast, who manage to remain straight-faced throughout proceedings. Taylor Kitsch is a better actor than the film betrays, as is Alexander Skarsgård. Rihanna actually does a suitable job in her acting debut.

Battleship is entertaining enough if it is not taken seriously. Those expecting anything more should give the film a wide berth.