Battleship

  • Review Date: May 15, 2012
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • Release Year: 2012
  • Running Time: 131 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Over-the-top sci-fi action with great special effects.
  • Review Date: May 15, 2012
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • Release Year: 2012
  • Running Time: 131 minutes

Age(i)

2
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4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
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17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Characters rise to the occasion to sacrifice themselves for the greater good, summon their bravery to take a stand against the aliens, and learn to think first and act later, even if they're usually impetuous people. Although violence is the story's ultimate problem-solver, Battleship is still a story of courage under fire and cooperating to target a common enemy.

Positive role models

Stone Hopper is the picture of a selfless commanding officer; he's smart, decisive, and brave. Alex learns to step up after he's forced to command the ship and, with the help of a core group of officers, becomes the kind of leader his brother would be proud of -- especially when he teams up with a rival Japanese officer to figure out how to defeat the aliens. A retired Army veteran, who's also a double amputee, displays leadership and courage.

Violence

As with most alien-invasion films, there's a huge body count. The aliens wipe out two entire ships, destroy a number of buildings, and cause widespread deaths in Hawaii and China, as well as worldwide panic. A few well-liked secondary characters die. Lots of explosions and gun violence, as well as some minor brawling among the rival naval officers. Characters are shown bloodied from close calls, as well as moments before their ships explode.

Sex

A few passionate kisses, a shot of a couple in bed, and the male star is shown wearing just a towel after coming out of the shower. One female character wears particularly tight or revealing clothes, even when she's working as a physical therapist. In one scene, she kisses her boyfriend while wearing only a string bikini top and very short shorts.

Language

Two implied uses of "motherf--er" (the last part is covered up by an explosion both times). Other words include "s--t," "ass," "hell," "bitch," "damn," "idiot," "oh my God," "goddamn," and the like.

Consumerism

The movie is based on the Hasbro board game, and Hasbro is credited as one of the production companies. There's one segment in which grid coordinates are called out just like in the game. Otherwise, there aren't any major product placements within the movie itself -- but there lots of tie-in products available, from special editions of the board game to first-person shooter video games, apps, toys, and more.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Some drinking early in the film: Adult brothers do shots for a birthday at a bar where others are also consuming alcohol. The main character gets drunk and makes some iffy decisions as a result.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Battleship (inspired by the classic Hasbro board game) is the kind of summer alien adventure that, like Independence Day, features a doomsday alien invasion that only a select armed forces group can fight against. As you'd expect, there's a high body count -- mostly due to all of the building- and ship-destroying explosions that the aliens -- though not much gore. Many high-tech weapons are used, one female character dresses somewhat suggestively, and the language can be occasionally salty -- "s--t," "bitch," and two cut-off exclamations of "motherf--er." Although the effects-heavy action is filled with scenes of targeted violence, there are ultimately some positive messages about rising to the occasion and overcoming your fears.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Hawaiian beach bum Alex Hopper (Taylor Kitsch) is a mess, and he proves as much on his 26th birthday, when he drunkenly breaks into a convenience store to steal a burrito for a potential date with Sam, a beautiful bar patron (Brooklyn Decker) who happens to be the admiral's (Liam Neeson) daughter. To turn his life around, Alex joins the Navy, where his big brother, Stone (Alexander Skarsgard), is an officer. Four years later, Alex is a hot-headed lieutenant trying to summon the courage to ask for Sam's hand in marriage, but his efforts are foiled when, during a war games exercise with the Japanese, a series of unidentifiable objects appears in the Pacific Ocean, creating an impenetrable field around three ships. After the objects are revealed to be aliens -- who destroy two of the ships -- Alex ends up the senior officer of the gathered forces, forcing him to cooperate with the Japanese to bring down the alien enemies.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Alien invasion films are ridiculously stereotypical, and BATTLESHIP is no exception. But what it lacks in originality, it makes up for in pretty spectacular special effects and sea-faring action sequences. This is no thinking viewer's war drama; this is the sort of big-budget spectacle to enjoy once on the big screen and maybe once more to give your home surround-sound a work out. After the unfortunate flop that was John Carter, Kitsch gets another shot at playing the hero, and he does it well. There's no finesse in the dialogue, but Kitsch is just right playing gorgeous rogues with a heart of gold -- as anyone who watched and loved Friday Night Lights knows.

As a bonus to FNL fans, director Peter Berg once again casts Jesse Plemmons as the nerdy guy who's always quick with the wisecrack. His boatswain character offers consistently good comic relief, as well as a decent acting partner for Rihanna's debut as a hard-as-nails weapons specialist. While Battleship's script is far from the layered finesse of, say, The Avengers, the action is exactly what you'd expect from an explosive summer popcorn flick. Tweens and teens -- especially boys -- will get a kick out of the military tactics and the broad humor (look, kids, elderly veterans curse!), while grown-ups might wonder if they've seen the same movie every summer for the past 15 years.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about Battleship's violence. How does the fact that much of it is larger than life affect its impact? How is it different watching aliens get hurt than human characters?

  • What are some of the cliches associated with alien-invasion movies? Why are they such a popular genre to release in the summer?

  • This movie marks Rihanna's transition from music to film. Was her celebrity status as a pop superstar distracting in the role?

  • Why do rogue characters like Alex tend be more compelling than always-good characters like Stone?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:May 18, 2012
DVD release date:August 28, 2012
Cast:Alexander Skarsgard, Liam Neeson, Taylor Kitsch
Director:Peter Berg
Studio:Universal Pictures
Genre:Action/Adventure
Topics:Space and aliens
Run time:131 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:intense sequences of violence, action and destruction, and for language

This review of Battleship was written by

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Written byAnonymous October 11, 2014
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Battleship review

========================================================= Sex/Nudity: A TV host/reporter shows some cleavage. Sam shows up in the bar wearing a very tight tank top that shows cleavage and draws the attention of Alex. We see Alex emerge from under the water in a bathtub filled with ice. He sits up, fully nude, but the ice covers his crotch area so nothing explicit is seen. Samantha shows some cleavage and kisses Alex. We see various shirtless guys following a soccer match, including Stone. Samantha suggestively asks Alex if he's "ready for this" while kissing him, showing lots of cleavage, and straddling him on the ground in a tight/revealing top and small/tight shorts (and the camera goes across her body in that). But what she's referring to is him asking her father for her hand in marriage. Samantha again shows cleavage. Samantha shows some cleavage. 3.5/10. ========================================================= Violence: To try to impress Sam (who's disappointed a bar won't serve her a burrito), Alex promises he'll get one. After discovering a nearby convenience store has just closed, he climbs on top and breaks and enters through the roof/ceiling. We see surveillance footage of him falling hard to the floor, and then falling hard again, this time to the top of an aisle case, as he tries to climb back out. As he then runs from police, some nearby cars crash, while the police taser him to the ground. There's hard contact during a soccer match, including one player violently colliding with another, while Captain Nagata ends up kicking Alex in the face, bloodying that. We hear the sound of Alex and Captain Nagata fighting behind a closed door. We later see Captain Nagata with a bruise on his face, and both lie to Admiral Shane about what really happened (trying to make it sound like it wasn't a fight so that they don't get into more trouble). As five alien craft quickly approach Earth, one smashes into a satellite, destroying it. The result alien craft debris then rains down on Hong Kong, smashing various buildings and such (with one building collapsing), causing all sorts of panic. We later hear that something like 25,000 people were killed. Alex, Cora and another crewmember cautiously approach one of the partially submerged alien crafts on a small inflatable boat equipped with a large gun on the front. Alex slowly walks toward the immense structure, only to be shocked and blown back into the water. That causes several huge, alien crafts to emerge from the water, along with a force field that surrounds them and blocks off much of the other fleet vessels. A fighter jet then races at that, but explodes upon contact with the force field. One alien ship then lets out a sonic (or similar blast) that hits many of the ships, breaking glass and such. A U.S. ship fires at an alien craft that then fires back. All but one incoming explosive is blown from the sky. The one that lands and embeds into the U.S. ship and then explodes. From a small inflatable boat, Cora opens fire on one of the alien crafts, and one fires back but misses them. An alien craft fires many explosives at a U.S. ship and many of the projectiles are destroyed, but one hits and it explodes, blowing people around. Many such explosives are then fired and embed themselves into the same ship that's then completely destroyed by the resultant explosions. Various large, spinning devices equipped with blades are fired from the alien ships. They land on an airfield and proceed to rip through and destroy many helicopters and kill various personnel. Some machine guns are fired back at them, but to no avail. More of the spinning devices rip through neighborhoods, smashing cars and such, with one going through a baseball field and stopping just short of a boy. It spares him, but then proceeds to knock out various bridge supports, thus causing part of a freeway to collapse. Some aliens on foot surprise attack a vehicle carrying some police and/or guards. We later see their dead bodies on the ground. A loud sound and gush of air accompanies Alex and Captain Nagata removing the helmet off a captured alien. They examine it, and when Alex opens one eyelid, the pupil contracts and the alien springs to life. It grabs Alex by the face (and he sees visions of battles elsewhere, presumably in the past), followed by an adjacent wall being blasted open. Other aliens then rescue that first one and depart. Thinking aliens are onboard their ship, Alex, Cora and others slowly make their way through it, machine guns at the ready. One person is then grabbed and yanked up through an opening and thrown aside, hard. Several sailors hear loud sounds behind a closed hatch that's then blasted off its hinges. An armored alien then slowly walks down some steps (bending them) and proceeds to go after some equipment in the ship. Walter then tries to intervene and hits the alien, but is knocked back. He then bashes a metal pipe (or similar) into the alien, including onto its foot. It then throws him aside, followed by Alex blasting the alien with machine gun fire (he's thrown aside) and then Cora doing the same with a machine gun and then handgun (she's also knocked aside). Alex and Cora then separately flee, but with a plan. Alex has the alien chase him up onto the deck, where the alien hits him and holds a sharp weapon, but unknowingly has just stepped in front of a large gun remotely controlled by Cora. She then blasts the alien with that. We see news footage replays of the Hong Kong debris damage as it occurred, along with some subsequent looting. Alex's ship blindly fires missiles at an alien craft, but they miss. This then happens again, followed by the aliens shooting back, but those miss as well. As alien craft quickly approach, Alex and Captain Nagata patiently wait to fire upon them. They do at the right moment and destroy both alien ships. After Alex and Captain Nagata shoot out its windows with sniper rifles, missiles, torpedoes and heavy machine guns are fired at an alien ship, damaging it. But it fires large spinning devices at the U.S. ship and they proceed to tear their way through it. One chases one sailor, but Cora pulls him to safety. Most everyone jumps off into the water, including Alex and Captain Nagata who jump at the last moment before the ship is torn apart by the devices and the explosions they cause. A battleship gets into a big gun and explosives battle with a large alien ship. Both are hit and damaged. As the aliens send up beams to a satellite to signal reinforcements, Samantha purposefully drives a jeep into a device, temporarily knocking it off line. Her foot ends up stuck, as does a machine gun, so Mick gets out to fight the alien. He avoids being hit and lands some punches, one of which knocks off the alien's helmet and some teeth from its mouth. Mostly blinded by the sunlight, it hits his legs and flips him to the ground where it repeatedly tries jabbing him with a sharp weapon, but Cal smashes it with a metal case, thus allowing Mick to control it. As spinning devices fly through the air toward Alex's ship, fighter jets race overhead and destroy them, the alien ship that fired them, and various satellite dishes and related equipment the aliens were using. 7/10. ========================================================= Blood/Gore: We see some small holes in Alex's back from where taser contacts had earlier attached to his skin. Alex has a bloody nose and/or mouth after being kicked in the face by Captain Nagata during a soccer match. We hear the sound of Alex and Captain Nagata fighting behind a closed door. We later see Captain Nagata with a bruise on his face. Stone has blood on his face following an explosion onboard his ship. We see some bloody and partially burned human survivors from the alien attack. Cora has a bloody lip following an alien hitting her, while Alex has some blood on his head from the same. We see some dead and slightly bloody cops/guards (from an earlier scene). 5/10. ========================================================= Profanity: At least 3 incomplete "f" words (2 used with the prefix "mother"), 12 "s" words, 11 hells, 7 asses, 4 damns, 1 S.O.B., and 5 uses of "Oh my God," 4 of "G-damn," 2 uses of "My God," and 1 use each of "Jesus" and "Jesus Christ" as exclamations. 5.5/10. ========================================================= Alcohol/Drugs: Alex has a beer, and then a shot with his brother in a bar where others drink. 2/10. ========================================================= Smoking: None. ========================================================= Battleship is a decent science fiction film with amazing visual effects. I give it 6/10. =========================================================
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Kid, 11 years old May 19, 2012
AGE
9
QUALITY
 

won't make you abandon ship

This was relaesed a month before in britain so i watched it on the 15th of april.this was not the best action film i have ever seen and rhianha CAN NOT ACT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! but otherwise thres solid performences,ingenious nods to the game and awsome special effects
What other families should know
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Kid, 12 years old May 22, 2012
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

GREAT ACTION PACKED MOVIE

This movie battleship is action packed movie, full of aliens and humans fighting for the world. It's a good movie that children and audults will love! EVEN THOUGH IT A LITTLE BIT OF CURSING AND VOILENCE( BECAUSE IT'S A MOVIE ABOUT THE ARMY IN A WAR) IT REALLY GREAT AND NOT INAPROPREATE!
What other families should know
Too much violence
Teen, 14 years old Written bylittlemonster98 May 21, 2012
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

Suprisingly non violent movie...

This movie is full of action, and explosions....but almost no violence...just destruction. This movie was actually very good and exciting. A great movie to start your kid on action movies. Riri was amazing for her first role. Anyone should see this movie as long as they are in grade school or above.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models

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