So he’s watched every Meg Ryan movie, every film adaptation of a Nicolas Sparks novel, every date movie featuring a blonde starlet and a handsome hunk, with you – what can you do to make up for all that slush? Watch Battle Los Angeles with him. This somewhat confusing all action movie has bits of War of the Worlds, Escape from New York, Predator, Independence Day, and dozens of other sci fi action movies without any of the thought that went into those productions. It’s pretty lame, but it’s not meant to be Shakespeare, right?
It would be sexist to say that this movie could not appeal to women – well, maybe it could do with more hunks. None of the male actors really qualify on this score, but they all remind you of someone else. That’s what happens when a production can’t afford big names. It hires big name lookalikes. There’s the Kurt Russell, the Eminem, the Michelle Rodriguez, the Simon Pegg, the Freddie Mercury, the Barack Obama – no, I’m just being silly now, that really is Michelle Rodriguez. She’s the American Express card of action movies. Don’t leave home without her.
In lieu of acting, there is plenty of emoting all over the place, those obligatory pep talks that should always end “They may take our lives, but they will never take our FREEDOM!” but can’t, because of copyright laws, and a lot of mugging and breast-beating – “I can’t take it any more.” Maybe you will feel like that too, but grit your teeth and think of The Notebook.
Making sense of it may just hurt your head but briefly, some aliens have landed – again – and look vaguely like robotic cyborg quasi humans (you get the drift) who are not really interested in us in any anthropological sense, they just want to kill us all, and knock over various landmarks like the Eiffel Tower – again.
Aaron Eckhart (um – Dark Knight, so I'm told?) plays the obligatory grizzled old war horse about to enter retirement, with a thumping big dimple in his chin that screams “we really wanted Kurt Russell for this role but we couldn’t pay enough,” who is suddenly called back into action when Los Angeles sprouts more warrior robots than a Conan the Barbarian movie. Take note of that dimpled chin – chins are in here. All these men have chins they could dig a trench with. So handy in wartime.
With a rag tag team (where have we heard that before) he kicks alien butt good and hard. Atta boy – and girl, sorry, Michelle. But it’s not all bad. Amidst this steaming pile of sci fi and war movie clichés is a movie that manages to be entertaining, unintentionally funny and passes the time. And it gives you a good excuse to drag him off to the next weepie with Nicole Kidman.
I paid to see this movie with my own funds.