Before anything else is said, congratulations to Gavin Hood for turning such a difficult, plot-packed story into a film that still follows it well. Some larger aspects of the books are left out, such as Locke/Demosthenes and deeper relationships with Ender and the people in his life, and while difficult to portray some of the aspects of Ender’s mind, such as his unique and beautiful ability to understand the minds of others, the film does it justice in it’s own way and the acting for both the children and the adults is superb. Parents should know that while the violence and language rate is less than the book, it is still there and two children are beaten near to death, one with a spiked instrument and kicking and the other with hot water and punches, ending in falling against a concrete block and cracking his head. Little blood is shows but it is still ghastly, especially as both beatings are done by another child. Both children later die in the book but this is not said in the movie. There is some language and crude words also said, and Ender is threatened several times with death by other children, including his brother. Main characters consist of Andrew ‘Ender’ Wiggin, who is taken from his family (his parents, violent brother Peter and loving, compassionate sister Valentine [played by Abigail Breslin]) to be taken to Battle School. There he is forced into a series of tests that will not only grade his ability to become a leader and a brilliant strategist, but also to understand how well he deals with pressure, rejection, hatred and frustration. Throughout the film Ender’s physical and psychological trials are difficult to watch. While at battle school he faces much enmity but also finds friends, the main two being Petra Arkanian (Hailee Steinfeld) and Bean (Aramis Knight). While Petra’s relationship with Ender is larger than the book and Bena’s smaller, they both retain their characteristic qualities, though Bean’s own talents being on par with Ender’s are unmentioned. Ender’s fascinating road to becoming a leader is necessarily left out as the film can only be so long, but enough of it is shown that people who haven’t read the book won’t be confused. The final main character is Colonel Graff, (Harrison Ford), who is good at what he does - find brilliant children and train them to be loners and leaders. Graff cares very little for the children themselves, and perhaps the most fascinating thing about the film is the moral controversy people always have when it comes to war and ‘do the ends justify the means’ question that has plagued the world for so long. Enough justice is given to both sides of the argument that a viewer with an opinion on the matter won’t be disappointed with a lack of evidence for their side. Graff and his counterparts Anderson (Viola Davis) and Rackham (Ben Kingsley) have their job clear and simple - find the best commander, use him to win not only this war, but the possibility of all future wars. They use Ender’s gift of understanding for their own morally debatable purposes, which is probably the greatest element of the book and movie. With stunning visual effects and characters and plotlines not easily forgotten, ‘Ender’s Game’ is a movie you can watch without reading the book but is definitely better if you have. It is a difficult novel to make into a screen adaption and they did a great job. Hats off to everyone who made this movie.