Battleship DVD Review – Robots in Disguise

★★☆☆☆

When scientists on Earth beam a radio signal into space it reaches ‘Planet G’; and before long aliens have landed in US waters and a fleet of naval destroyers come under attack.

Enter Lieutenant Hopper (Taylor Kitsch) and a bunch of good looking naval misfits armed with heavy firepower and a banging soundtrack to save the day.

In Battleship the Hollywood machine has once again reached into our childhood and plucked out one of our treasured pastimes – and totally ruined it.  Even the Hasbro is in on the act, producing the film.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that this was a Michael Bay project – the similarities are there, the construction and movement of the alien ships especially.  This is such a cookie cutter, effects driven action movie it’s almost as if it’s taking a self reflexive dig at the genre.

The film itself is like one long trailer – all sound bites, explosions and product placement – all from the director of far superior films The Kingdom and Friday Night Lights.  Thematically, it jumps between sci-fi, military homage, comedy and a search for redemption by Kitsch, whose screw up character lives in the shadow of his brother (Alexander Skarsgard).

Only Liam Neeson is on hand to steady the ship – so to speak – his no nonsense, gruff Admiral making sterling work of a limited part.

The alien threat itself is something of a non sequitur.  They have vastly superior technology yet only seem able to destroy an area the size of a shopping centre. Once out of their ships they are less threatening, lumbering around in hydraulic suits that do not do justice to the flawless CGI of the rest of the film.  The sense of menace and danger completely disappears.

If you like your action films loud and uncomplicated then Battleship might just be what you’re looking for.

Vikki Myerscough

Rating: 12
UK DVD/BD Release Date: 27th August 2012
Directed By: Peter Berg
Cast: Taylor Kitsch, Alexander SkarsgårdRihanna, Tadanobu Asano, Brooklyn Decker, Liam Neeson