By Mark Ramsey | 2012/05/28

The last time I played the Battleship board game it was in a fight-to-the-death against actor Vincent D’Onofrio.  Unfortunately, D’Onofrio’s victory was decisive, and bits and pieces of my plastic armada are still today floating around the open sea of board games past.

Now if only I had extraterrestrial battleships like the ones in the new Battleship movie I’m pretty sure I could have inflicted heavy damage on D’Onofrio’s fleet, probably forestalling his ability to return to series television in one piece.  But alas, this was a time when “Battleship” implied boats, not spaceships.  Puny humans!

Why exactly does a movie called Battleship feature the Navy battling ships from another planet instead of another country?

Because in Hollywood there are no bad countries, only bad box-office!

Speaking of which, that’s exactly the fate of Battleship.

Wonder of wonder, miracle of miracles:  Battleship stars the same sorry guy who anchored the notoriously floppy John Carter.  I don’t want to suggest his career is in jeopardy, but from now on he’s more likely to be ON Jeopardy.

“If you want your franchise placed in peril, I’m your guy,” said the aptly named Taylor Kitsch, via his new agent at Shecky’s Hollywood Talent agency, where the motto is “We cast more pool cleaners than UTA and WME combined!”

“Taylor can take your numbers down faster than a Facebook IPO!” said Shecky.

The best part of Battleship’s lackluster opening is that it immediately puts other game-based projects into turnaround: Easy Bake Oven: Apocalypse and My Pretty Pony: Rise of the Lycans, I’m talking to you.

The premise:  Scientists have discovered a Goldilocks planet – that’s a planet where bears eat porridge.

So we signal the Goldilocks planet and the message comes back loud and clear:  Prepare your discretionary dollars to be flushed down the toilet, foolish mortals!

The elevator pitch:  From the people who watch movies by the people who hire Michael Bay to adapt a movie out of the toys made by the people who made Transformers, it’s Battleship!

Is this a movie or a recruiting ad for the kind of Navy that hosts soccer tournaments and attracts hot babes?

“Will I get hot girls if I join the Navy?”

“Sure, and a hot case of Gonorrhea, too!  Sign here!”

Battleship is one of those movies that features characters with names like “Captain Stone Hopper.”  You can find him at the officers’ club smoking stogies with Commander Rock Skipper and Vice Admiral Bedrock J. Magma.  Barney Rubble, eat your heart out.

Liam Neeson plays the father of Sports Illustrated model Brooklyn Decker.

“Either I was adopted or built in a laboratory,” said Decker.

Pop star Rihanna has taken a break for her “new music video every day” production schedule for a forgettable supporting role that, for whatever reason, places her screen credit ahead of Liam Neeson’s!

“It can only be due to her consistent record of box-office success,” said a wry Neeson, who seems to have been referring to a different kind of “record” and a different kind of “box.”

“One thing’s for sure,” Neeson added, “nobody wields tactical weaponry with greater skill under my umbrella ella ella ay ay ay.”

We’re looking at an extinction level event, because interstellar Transformer-looking beasties that float and hop on the water have cordoned off a game-space, er, zone, where the future of the world depends on a band of heroes, a few boats, a pop songstress, and a Sports Illustrated cover-model!

Battleship is a love-letter to the Navy and the men and women who fight in it.  The movie swells with the kind of schmaltzy sentiment that should have made it a much bigger hit had it been better marketed and filled with more audience-friendly faces.  And avoiding the overpowering audience gravitational force of The Avengers wouldn’t hurt, either.

If there’s a hot-button this movie missed then Rihanna hasn’t put her umbrella on it.

Ella ella ay ay ay.


11 Responses to “Battleship”

  1. Lucas Schippers says:

    I want to see Easy Bake Oven: Apocalypse. It sounds like a biopic of Sylvia Plath.

    Also: someone needs to pitch an 8-hour long film based on Stratego. An art-house hit in the making.


    Mark Ramsey Reply:

    Don’t give Terrence Malick any ideas.

    Thanks Lucas.


  2. Steve C. says:

    “At least BATTLESHIP is a better title than JOHN CARTER” – Variety

    in development- the Connect Four franchise-


    Executive producer Michael Bey


    Mark Ramsey Reply:

    You had to remind me of the existence of Uwe Boll and ruin my whole day!


    TommyB Reply:

    Ah yes, Uwe Boll.
    The living proof that having a Ph.D. doesn’t help you anything at making movies.
    He should have used his time more wisely, like being an assistant to Michael Bay, for instance.


  3. Ian says:

    Hilarious review! I can’t wait to see the movie (active duty US Navy).


    Mark Ramsey Reply:

    You will like it, I predict!


  4. mrs sharpe says:

    Oh come on guys…its not that bad lol


    Mark Ramsey Reply:

    I tend to agree with you.


  5. Eh... says:

    How did this get a ripe review while Avenger’s got a rancid review? On a side note, I heard Adam Sandler is involved in making a Tonka Trucks movie. Seriously, no joke.


    Mark Ramsey Reply:

    Sandler is better off working in trucking than in comedy.


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