Battle LA: “Maybe I can help. I’m a Veterinarian.”

“Battle: Los Angeles” 7/10

In a movie that was billed as the Black Hawk Down of alien movies, I guess great dialogue isn’t one of the things advertised. Nor is sense and logic. But intense fun is! And I’m sorry but if you were looking for a social commentary on military standards in Somalia Los Angeles then maybe you brought the wrong DVD home from the Red Box. This is Battle: LA. All I want are aliens getting blown up, Michelle Rodriguez to have one liners, and one inspiring speech about humanity and perseverance. Check, check, and check.

The plot is mostly non-existant, although it tries really hard to get you to care about these characters. Aaron Eckhart, character name not important, because of his mysterious past is somehow ranked below the new guy, all on his last week before retirement. Ne-Yo is getting married the next week. Someone else is from Africa. They all are surprised dispatched when those surprise meteors falling from the sky are actually alien spacecraft. Flying in the face of M. Night Shyamalan’s mentally handicapped aliens, these baddies actually need our water to survive. 

The unit we follow was sent to rescue some civillians in Santa Monica and then get out. Needless to say, their path is obstructed by aliens with machine guns grafted to their bodies. This brings us to a point to talk about how much cooler the aliens could have been. They just looked way to mechanical and robot like. Sure they were mostly mechanical drones because these aliens know what they’re doing, but don’t you want them to be fighting something slimy and deformed. We get some good alien guts shots so why not give us more alien gut explosions?

Bridget Moynahan - Professional Alien Veterinarian

Fortunately, there is enough action and fighting and cool death scenes that it succeeds as more of a military movie than an alien movie. I’d be lying if I said it was lame when Aaron Eckhart blew up some alien ship by exploding a gas station. Fuck yeah! This is 2 hours of great things like that, and I don’t think the movie was reaching for loftier goals.

So just shut off your brain and watch Eckhart’s jaw line defeat aliens. It’s just pure popcorn fun.

BONUS CONTENT: (with spoilers for The Hurt Locker)

Am I right in thinking these two movies have the same moral? The Hurt Locker, a fucking best picture winner, literally dick slaps you with its message – “War is a drug.” Jeremy Renner’s character Sgt. First Class William James is unable to adjust to a quiet life back home after the intense constant adrenaline rush of war so he leaves his family and goes back in. That’s a pretty high minded, non-politicized concept and one Kathryn Bigelow handles very well.

Now in Battle: Los Angeles (spoiler?), after Aaron Eckhart, Ne-Yo, and Michelle Rodriguez defeat the alien command-and-control center and go back to some base camp. When given their moment of rest at the end, they patriotically refuse breakfast and go back into war. I would actually give the award to Battle: LA for a less obvious take on this, but they’re doing the same thing, right? They somehow need to go back to war then being with their loved ones. Eat your breakfast Ne-yo! Take a nap! You’ve been fighting fucking aliens for 24 hours, I think people will understand. But no… War is a drug.

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