So, Jamie's dad had more than once recommended me the 2012 film, Battleship, which he'd seen in the theater. I had heard some atrocious things online, but Dick was the only person I knew who had actually seen the movie.
A good, brainless movie can really pass the time on the elliptical, so I threw on Battleship, directed by the notable director and producer Peter Berg of Friday Night Lights fame, and starring Taylor Kitsch of FNL fame as well.
If you have high hopes for a groundbreaking film based on a board game, which throws up a title screen that this is a Hasbro movie, and which stunt casts Rihanna, well, you may come away disappointed.
I am not averse to, and am actually a fan of, what my brother calls "hardware porn". Movies that feature lots of military vehicles, space ships, cannons, what have you... and in this vein, I am quite excited for Pacific Rim. It's worth noting that Battleship is probably intended for middle school boys, from the chaste romantic story to the color-by-numbers scrappy-rebel-learns-honor-in-the-military plot. And, also, the complete fetishization of naval combat against alien aggressors.
In a market that needed every international dollar, the plot is ridiculously easy to understand, has a cast of Americans and Japanese sailors working together against aliens that look a little like members of 1990's summer fun band, Sugar Ray, in Halo armor, and never once provides a surprise that isn't a "yahoo!" sort of moment.
In a weird way, you can skip the first 30 minutes and cut right to the part where the alien vessels first arrive. If you've ever seen a movie before (any movie before) you don't need the set-up. The rest is basically about 36 hours of human v. alien war around Hawaii, way too much CGI, improbably use of naval maneuvers and lots and lots of Zack Snyder inspired FX without the "enough already" of Zack Snyder.
I'm not telling you that you must run out and watch Battleship, but for a ridiculous movie with a plot and alien attack plan no worse than the one in Avengers or any of the three Star Wars prequels, it's not as bad as the 34% at Rottentomatoes would lead you to believe. But it's also a movie utterly without pretension, aiming right for the same kids who are still playing the boardgame.
And, by the way, they manage to fit in a nice round of Battleship at about the 2/3rd mark of the movie. Pretty sneaky, sis.