Ender's Game Saturday, 04 April 2020

Ender's Game

Additional Info

  • Rating:

    M: Science fiction themes and violence.

  • The pitch:

    Wiggin in the middle.

  • Starring:

    Asa Butterfield, Harrison Ford, Hailee Steinfeld, Abigail Breslin, Ben Kingsley, Viola Davis, Aramis Knight, Suraj Partha, Moises Arias, Khylin Rhambo, Jimmy 'Jax' Pinchak, Nonso Anozie, Ben Kingsley

  • Directed by:

    Gavin Hood

  • Running time:

    114 minutes

  • Rated:

    M (Australia), 12A (UK), PG-13 (USA)

  • VIOLENCE/GORE:

    People are punched, hit, kicked, bullied, thrown against objects, hit with objects, threatened, wrestled, near-choked, pushed, shoved, scalded. Human sacrifice, air raids, alien attacks, exploding aircraft, free-falling aircraft, explosions, burning buildings, wreckage, destroyed planet, lava. Smashed glass, lasers, freeze-rays. Animated animals are killed. Screaming, yelling, insubordination. Suicide, millions dead, genocide mentioned. Kids play war games, play-fight, shoot each other (freeze guns), practice hand-to-hand combat. Blood/gore: Blood on object, bandage. An animal burrows into an eye socket (animation). Twisted ankle, cracked skull.

  • SEX/NUDITY:

    Shirtless teen. Neutering mentioned. A boy makes a derogatory remark about another boy's paternity.

  • VICES/DRUG USE:

    Alcohol (wine). A boy is sedated. Animals appear to drown/melt in poison (animation).

  • LANGUAGE:

    A-word, cr*p, balls. Name-calling. Military, gender stereotypes. Religious exclamations.

  • THEMES:

    Science fiction, aliens, leadership, war, peace, battle, combat training, rejection, hope, authority, manipulation, teamwork, rivalry, competition, promotion, psychological assessment, misfits, failure, siblings, simulation, sleep deprivation, communication, mind games, victims, instinct, invasion, morality, bullying, video-game violence, empathy, zero gravity.

  • HIDDEN EXTRAS:

    Deceased father (war) mentioned. Job resignations. Infirmary, outer space, future settings. Medical procedures: object removed from skin, whirring instruments, head surgery. Alien aircraft, jets, aircraft ejection, giant, mouse/rat-like creature, giant alien bugs, cobra, swarming insects. Alien specimens in jars of formaldehyde, alien bug mask. Vomiting. Some dizzying camerawork (spiraling/sweeping/fast-moving shots). Based on the novel by Orson Scott Card.

  • CRITICS LIKE:

    Absorbing, imaginative, rousing, challenging, awesome, exciting, engaging, complex, brainy, impressive, thought-provoking, intriguing, pacy. Terrific performance from Butterfield, gorgeous visuals, beautifully choreographed battle scenes, strong first half, sleek production design.

  • CRITICS DON'T LIKE:

    Self-important, uneven, anticlimactic, odd, shallow, messy, incompetent, derivative. Weak second half, storytelling feels rushed/hasty, mediocre script, lacks humour/suspense/charm, one-dimensional characters.

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