With Asa Butterfield, Harrison Ford, Hailee Steinfeld, Viola Davis, Abigail Breslin, Ben Kingsley
Written by Gavin Hood (based on the novel by Orson Scott Card)
Directed by Gavin Hood
After winning a Best Foreign Film Oscar for locally made movie Tsotsi, Gavin Hood’s career has escalated to working with acclaimed actors like Meryl Streep, taking on a huge super hero franchise (Wolverine) and legends like Harrison Ford and Ben Kingsley in this latest project.
While looking forward to this (even with a fair amount of big budget effects and high profile supporting cast), sadly it didn’t deliver for me. Maybe it was the teenage characterization or plodding pace, but somehow the story of a boy (known as Ender) thrown into the deep end as the possible saviour of humanity (whose united front against an invading alien force puts him on a hard cold path of preparation) didn't grab me.
While this is more science based than magic, a Harry Potter audience may enjoy this far more (and with it the target age group, although it does contain a fair bit of violence).
With a huge amount of time spent on the lead character selected by the big brass to enter the training programme geared to defeat the enemy (including simulations and anti-gravity battles), it simply drags too much, not helped by Ender's process of making allies and enemies. The ending may be a shocking revelation to many, but unfortunately I speculated its outcome which resulted in bland fizzle...
Even with the author of the book on board as a producer, I feel for adults this may be a better read than a movie.
2 / C
- Paul Blom
0 1 2 3 4 5
- A - B -
See Hood's Wolverine origin below