Ender’s Game – Movie Review

Ender’s Game – Movie Review

Director: Gavin Hood
Writers: Gavin Hood, Orson Scott Card (novel)
Stars: Asa Butterfield, Harrison Ford, Hailee Steinfeld, Ben Kingsley, Viola Davis, Abigail Breslin, Nonso, Anozie, Aramis Knight, Suraj Partha
Superhero Movie

Enders Game Movie ReviewI love it when a book or story I read and enjoyed gets adapted for the big or small screen. In recent years, I’ve been able to see another version of Game of Thrones, of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, of Sin City.

In these hard economic times, Hollywood is making fewer movies that aren’t popular in some other medium first, with a ready-made audience. They’re looking for the next Harry Potter, the next Hunger Games, ever mindful of franchises that just didn’t make it (I am Number Four).

But it’s hard to adapt a full-length novel into a two hour movie without losing something in the translation. Fans of the book will understand what’s going on, but pieces of the plot will be lost on those who haven’t read it.

I have not read Ender’s Game. I know–it’s a hole in my science fiction background. I’m better with Heinlein and Hogan and Scalzi.

Ender’s Game takes place in a near future where the Earth is fifty years beyond a devastating alien invasion by the bug-like Formics; one that was barely defeated. They’ve spent the intervening time working on defense, determined that another attack will not succeed.

The world’s smartest children have been recruited to fight the war, raised on war games, their quick minds more able to adapt to the possible strategies needed to defeat the enemy. Ender Wiggins is one of these children–intelligent, athletic, well-trained.

This is his story.

It’s full of conflicts as the movie explores his complicated response to authority figures, he forges relationships, and he learns what it is to be a leader. There are setbacks and complications, but he is exceptional.


I found the story interesting and entertaining, but lacking nuance. The basic tenant of “Show, Don’t Tell” was violated constantly as the script zipped through a concept, then just explained it, rather than letting the understanding grow. It’s the limitations of the medium, but there are techniques available.

Some of the world building involving the actions of the International Fleet just didn’t make sense. I’m inclined to guess that, again, this was covered more thoroughly in the novel.

The performances in Ender’s Game, most particularly Asa Butterfield as Ender and Ben Kingsley sporting a Maori tattoo, are uniformly strong. The visual effects and stunts are first rate. You believe that the cadets are playing an advanced version of laser tag in zero-G, and that space ships are an accepted part of life.

This one’s for those who don’t mind some philosophy and moral lessons with their science fiction, and most certainly for fans of the book.

Written By Elektra Hammond
Shop Cat Shirts @ Buzzy Tees!

Summary
Ender's Game Movie Review
Article Name
Ender's Game Movie Review
Description
I found the story interesting and entertaining, but lacking nuance. The basic tenant of “Show, Don’t Tell” was violated constantly as the script zipped through a concept, then just explained it, rather than letting the understanding grow. It’s the limitations of the medium, but there are techniques available. Some of the world building involving the actions of the International Fleet just didn’t make sense. I’m inclined to guess that, again, this was covered more thoroughly in the novel.
Author
BuzzyMag.com
Get FREE Buzzy Mag Email Updates!
Elektra Hammond

Elektra Hammond

Editor & Reviewer
Elektra Hammond emulates her multi-sided idol Buckaroo Banzai by going in several directions at once.

Elektra lives in Delaware with her husband, Mike, and the cat herd of BlueBlaze/Benegesserit catteries. When not freelancing or appearing at science fiction conventions she travels world-wide judging cat shows.
Elektra Hammond
Visit The Official Elektra Hammon Webisite: UntilMidnight.com