Right up front? This movie is in the running for the dumbest movie of all time.
There are easily twenty to twenty-five points in the movie where you could look at what’s happening onscreen and list ten good reasons why whatever’s going on would be either impossible, improbable, incongruous, or idiotic. And that’s ALLOWING for the possibility of an alien invasion in the first place, I’m not even counting that…
Yup, this script was someone’s Jr. High creative writing assignment, but on the plus side? They blow a lot of shit up.
Seriously, anytime you have Rihanna manning heavy weapons, something silly is going on.
And that’s exactly what this movie is. Right from the opening bell, when Taylor Kitsch is “forced to join the Navy”, and then they cut to him starring in an international soccer game that’s part of a joint military exercise with Japan, you just know, “Hey, they don’t give a shit about logic or common sense here”. I mean, literally, when they talk about “turning off you brain” to watch a movie, I don’t think that’s enough for this one. You better unplug that thing too, just in case.
High level plot summary, here we go!
- Aliens invade Earth. During entry into the atmosphere, they lose their communications ship.
- Explosions and damage effects as the communications ship crashes.
- Aliens create a force-field dome around Hawaii in order
to justify focusing the story on just three shipsin order to secure their attempts to hijack our communications uplink.
- Explosions and damage effects as we try to penetrate the force field.
- The three naval vessels trapped within the dome are the only military response the world can muster, they try to attack the aliens.
- Explosions and damage effects as the Aliens eliminate 2 out of 3 of the ships.
- The aliens’ technology is alternately super high-tech and astonishingly primitive. They easily dispose of ships when it’s convenient to the plot, and then inexplicably allow Kitsch’s ship to survive.
- Explosions and damage effects as Kitsch and crew turn the tide.
I don’t mean to shortchange the characters here, except there are none.
Well, except for Kitsch, so here’s his bio. He’s a ne’er-do-well who’s forced to join the Navy, but still can’t get his shit together. Well, I’ll give him the fact that his girlfriend (Brooklyn Decker) is exceedingly hot. Of course, she’s the Admiral’s daughter (Liam Neeson), so that causes problems. Anyways, he’s about to be discharged for getting into a fight… except the invasion occurs. When everyone who outranks him dies during the initial exchange with the aliens, Kitsch is forced into command of his destroyer.
While all of this is going on at sea, his girlfriend - the Admiral’s daughter, is taking her physical therapy patient for a hike up the exact same mountain that the aliens are trying to attack. It’s a good thing for us that she was, too, because along the way, she and he rescue the one scientist who could help any of this, relay critical information to the battleship at sea, and delay the uplink satellite at a critical juncture! WHOO! Eat hot blonde you Alien Scum!
For those of you who have seen it, I don’t want to give any spoilers to those who haven’t, but I do want to mention that I really like the portion of the movie where they call for aid from the unexpected source towards the end. I hope that’s enough to clue you in. That was great…
I will also say that the way they tie this movie back to the board game “Source material” needs to be seen to be believed. It’s thoroughly laughable. Not that everything else isn’t…
I had fun, though. In all honesty every time something stupid happened (read: Frequently) I chuckled. I don’t think it was a case of laughing with it and not at it… I was definitely laughing at it, but I WAS laughing. In any objective measure of quality, this movie is a fail. Plot, characters, themes, dialogue, direction… anything a critic should look at in order to “rate”, this flick fails. But I think it pushes through to the other side. For those of you who enjoy dumb, loud, stupid films, I think this is a decent offering.
Grading Seriously?: F There’s really no other option
In a so bad it’s good way: B Not a classic of the genre, but enjoyable.