Battle: Los Angeles / World Invasion: Battle LA, Film Review.
Okay it’s been a while since I have done a film review. But I finally found time to sit down and watch Battle: Los Angeles.
Battle: Los Angeles is a special effects feast that is light on plot and characterizations but heavy on action.
We all know what LA looks like, as so many films are set there. So it’s different to see the city being on the front line, of a war. But you get the feeling that there is more going on that you are missing out on. It stated at the beginning that the invasion is happening on a global scale. However that is easy to over look as this is a story about a platoon of Marines in the thick of things. With a simple mission, get any civilians caught behind enemy lines out before the bombs are dropped.
The film starts out with the platoon on a chopper heading out to forward base, where they will be given there orders. As they are heading there, they witness more of he aliens first wave landing in the sea just of the coast of Los Angeles.
We then head back 24 hours to before the invasion starts. This was done so we get to know the members of the platoon and get a little background on Staff Sergeant Michael Nantz played by Aaron Eckhart. Here we learn that Nantz has seen lots of action in Afghanistan where a mission went badly wrong, though it not made clear what happened. But there are stories about it flying around the base he works on.
We also learn that he has been in the service for 20 years and is looking to retire.
This fly’s though and we don’t really get to know the Characters except for Nantz.
Before long a series of meteors is heading for Earth, and the world is on alert. When it appears that the falling objects are slowing down, the military is mobilized and Nantz’s retirement is refused. We don’t see anything of the invasion except though News Reports with most of them coming form LA.
The film then picks up from the opening credits, and full blow Alien Invasion is underway. We quickly learn that a distress signal has been picked up from a police Precinct and the platoon is tasked to head there and evacuate the survivors before the Air Force drops there bombs.
The film moves along with a few action sequences where we learn it hard to kill the aliens with a standard M16. This is where Michelle Rodriguez as an Air Force Technical Sergeant, with a vital piece of the plot. Up to this point including Michele had done a great job with the acting however they don’t have much to work with and there are few clichés.
With the Third act of the film is where the platoon is now down to a squad due kill’s and wounded, make it to the police station. Up to this point the film a bit slow except for the action scene. The Third act is where the film is fast-paced and entertaining.
The Marines, find the police station with only five survivors. (Two adults and three children.) The children are not really needed in this film as they don’t add anything to the film except for one and even that is not really needed.
The Marines find an Alien that has been badly wounded, and start to find away to kill them. This is an interesting scene, and also make the aliens no longer invisible as the Marine now how to kill them. But it’s not done in away where the Marine will win each engagement form this point, because they don’t. The Marine and the Aliens are on the same footing, so this make for a more realistic film.
There are a few bad plot decisions and as I said before no Characterizations. Some of the action has a BSG documentary film style, which is very pointless at time, as it does not really give you a good look at the aliens or their vehicles.
This does not stop’s the film from being entertaining but you probably won’t really care when Private No-name buys it.
But when the film hit the third act it really comes into it own. This is a four act film so don’t worry if you think it only get good at the end. As it entertaining all the way though.
The CGI look good though the alien look a bit weird, one moment they got legs next they got tentacles. But it cool to see LA burning.
All in all, if you want to see Black Hawk Down meets Independence Day (but without the crap of ID4) then this is the film for you. But even if you just want a good action film it still worth seeing.
The film ending also leaves it open to a squeal, but given the scale of the invasion it would be good to see if from other points of view around the world. It also has the possibility of a franchise, in other films, TV or print.
All in all I give this movies a 3.5 out of 5
“Corpsman Jibril Adukwu: Shit, I’d rather be in Afghanistan.”