Battle: Los Angeles [Blu-ray]  [Region Free]
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Witness the end of civilization unfold as hostile alien invaders attack the planet. As people everywhere watch the world’s great cities fall, Los Angeles becomes the last stand for mankind in a battle no one expected. Now it's up to a Marine staff sergeant (Aaron Eckhart) and his platoon to draw a line in the sand as they take on an enemy unlike any they’ve ever encountered in this epic sci-fi action film.
Battle: Los Angeles is a war movie first, science fiction second. It's got it all: a burned-out retiring sergeant who gets drawn back in because, dammit, the Marines need him; the guy who's about to get married; the guy who's still a virgin; the guy suffering from shell shock and who just might crack; the newbie officer with a lot of book learning who you just know is going to freeze under pressure and have to be shepherded by that burned-out sergeant, who learned his lessons on the battlefield… and so much more. There's not a moment in this movie you haven't seen before--the only twist is that the enemy is alien, so whatever shred of concern you might have for raining heavy artillery on a fellow human being can be cheerfully cast aside. But clichés are clichés because they are efficient and effective, and despite the profound familiarity of Battle: Los Angeles, there's no denying the movie rips along (though two-thirds of the way through you may have forgotten who was the virgin and who was the shell-shocked guy--but really, does it matter?). The look owes a debt to District 9, a hand-held, vérité grittiness, with most of the CGI carefully given a dingy, dirty look so that it meshes with the urban landscape. Aaron Eckhart (The Dark Knight) does an impressive job of spitting out ham-fisted dialogue like he really, really means it, while the rest of the cast is suitably generic. This is an unrepentant love letter to the military; many viewers, faced with the unsettling chaos and moral ambiguities of real wars, will find this mythologizing not only soothing, but even moving. --Bret Fetzer
- Behind the Battle
- Aliens in L.A.
- Preparing for Battle
- Creating L.A.
- Plus – BDLive
- Directing the battle
- The freeway battle
- Command Control (command your viewing experience by watching picture-in-picture, battle points and more during the movie)
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Top Customer Reviews
The first thing that you have to accept about this film is that it shot in an unorthodox fashion. Ignoring convention and traditional techniques in order to lend a sense of realism, I guess. It has been done better in other films and more irritatingly in others (see Bourne Identity.) In some scenes it works, in others it confuses. (Although I suspect, that may have been the intention, to try and illustrate the chaos of combat.) More thought in the editing room would have helped here. This deliberately generated uneasiness also fills in for the poor clichéd script. Although, we should acknowledge the formula that runs the military is a powerhouse of cliché (lock, stock and barrel.)
The down side to this quick paced technique is you have a hard time identifying with the characters and they remain rather two dimensional. This doesn’t necessarily matter for an out and out action film like this.
The addition of the news reports into the Marine centric story, that are the meat of the plot, is nicely done. Not an original idea, but a skilful tool to carry the story and gauge the global scene without cutting away in to painfully stereotyped pointless scenes, (see Independence Day.)
The sabre rattlingly inevitable and overly simple plot is also a device used to focus us down to as real a look as is possible, as to what the boots on the ground troops might face should an invading force of aliens ever land with hostile intentions.
I really don't understand why this film was so scathed by the critics. It stands up far better than many of its acclaimed contemporaries (Transformers for example,) even with its many faults.
It's Independence Day meets Saving Private Ryan - aliens v grunts in a joggly-camera, whirling ordnance, big explosion, LA-set Nirvana of shooting mayhem. The aliens are curiously limited - all that space travel and no decent AWACs or infra-red detection systems or ray guns - but that makes it a (reasonably) fair fight and allows Staff Sergeant Aaron Eckhart, Hoyt out of 'True Blood' and some other less familiar faces to actually trade fire to some effect with these extra-terrestrial scavengers.
Once the 'introduce the characters' bit is over, the film becomes a series of military cliff-hangers leavened by the odd 'come on guys' speech. A bus chase (like in Speed) gets chucked in too. There are also 'borrowings' from 'Aliens,' but it feels more like homage than plagiarism.
Crucially, it's played straight. There is no 'I know this is ridiculous' winking at the camera asides - just action. I think it's far more honest as a result. Some critics called it boorish and lacking in irony, but I think it does exactly what it says on the tin: massive shoot 'em up; Marines v Aliens; ludicrously exciting.
What's not to like?
If you know what films you like, you'll probably already know whether you want to see/own this film. It's not going to disappoint unlike some other 'actioners' I could name.
What I did not like is all the rest: that is basically everything
There is nothing really unique in the movie, sorry.
The 'drama-doc' type filming was done (much better) in Saving Private Ryan. The aliens here are a mix of several previous fims (including the exo-skeleton from Independence Day), as are their craft (Independence Day again).
Yes, it's a 100mph all-action US 'ain't we great' offering, and I suspect the target audience is US Redneck - too much 'Hoo-hah', 'Go Marines', 'Retreat Hell no'. As a result the plot is weak.
I'm a sci-fi fan (although I prefer books), and the 'sci' is worse than non-existent. Worse because we hear statements from 'a scientist' like : 'It's the composition of our water that's unique' - a statement that would have any 12 year-old here laughing, and : '... no other locations in our know universe have liquid H2O (that's the science bit) anywhere near their surface ...' - a statement that would have anyone with even a basic knowledge of the Universe weeping in despair. Our own Milky Way is just a miniscule part of the Universe, and there are tens of thousands of Earth-like planets in it (see The Drake Equation for more info)
Perhaps that's just too much for the average US citizen (or even our own) to comprehend.
But for all that Hollywood dumbness, it's worth watching - for a laugh. If you're being pursued by better armed, better equipped, more technically advanced killing machines, it's best to stay quiet. Not this lot. They spend all their time shouting, screaming, yelling, and banging into things. All actions guaranteed to attract the pursuers.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A good sc-fi, I feel thought it lacks some story line and the effects at time look like a cheap made for tv release. But over all I enjoyed watching it.Published 2 months ago by Darrin
Sci-Fi to be good has to have a story that has an element of "could it be true" and this does. There is no point during the film do you think Nah. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Steve
I REALLY ENJOYED THIS MOVIE. MARINES vs ALIENS. REALLY GOOD SFX AND PLENTY OF ACTION. 6 MARINES SAVE THE WORLD.!Published 4 months ago by MR KNOW IT ALL