I went to see this film that I had greatly anticipated with a young lady who's company I have had the pleasure to share a few times recently. I was very enthusiastic in promoting it to her, being confident that I was offering some quality movie entertainment, having read the book years ago and loving it. In fact, I read the whole series that Card created back in the late 70's and 80's. Unfortunately, I was let down by the movie's excessive melodrama during the first half of the film. In fact, I was a little embarrassed at the weak performance by Harrison Ford and most of the child actors. Throughout the first 1/2 to 3/5ths of the film. I felt I was leading myself into giving her the impression that I didn't know what a good Sci Fi movie looked like.
The film version of the story focused excessively on the emotional and physical isolation of Ender, claiming he was brilliant strategist/tactician when it came to playing video games and dealing with other children who are macho or disturbed "wunderkind" recruited to fight the "buggers". The directors seemed to think that if he had the kids talking like street gang leaders without the vulgar language, the audience would be wowed and sucked into the weak and often impotent bravado displayed on the screen by a bunch of unknown 14-15 year olds.
I don't want to completely dis the film because it was entertaining. I just felt the drama was way overdone and that it didn't do justice to Card's writing. Harrison Ford was particularly obnoxious and unrealistic in his crabby militaristic role as the space camp training office with the amazing insight to Ender's skills that no one else could fathom. He, the barracks sergeant, and several of the other children were all very unbelievable. Would I see the movie if I knew what I know now about it's delivery? Yes, certainly. But I won't bother to see it a second time.
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