Battlefield: Earth
(2000)











Rated: PG-13
Runtime: 1 Hour and 57 Minutes


Reviewer: Dale
Grade: F+

Okay, when I rented this movie, I wasn't expecting "Casablanca". But Jesus!

How can one begin to describe a movie this bad? The mind cannot wrap itself around the sheer awfulness that is "Battlefield: Earth". When I see a movie this mind-numbingly bad, I always wonder how the director could have sent it out into the world in the condition that it's in. I mean, you'd think that, when they saw the final edit, they would have thrown in the title. Maybe they even would have burned it in effigy. Do you really want something this heinous out in the public mainstream? With YOUR name on it somewhere?

Did he actually think it was a GOOD movie? I somehow doubt it. How could anyone look at this movie and then tell me, with a straight face, that it was anything other than horrid. I dare anyone to do so. The acting is atrocious. John Travolta has been good in other movies. In "Pulp Fiction", I think he was at his personal peak. But here he is nothing less than an embarrassment to all friends and family. He strides around with dreadlocks ordering people around and spouting the worst dialogue this side of an Ed Wood film. How bad is the dialogue? Well, I could try my hand at describing it, but that is a futile exercise in utter hopelessness. Lines like "What does the man animal think is a treat?" or "How the crap should I know?" pretty much speak for themselves. Not to say that I didn't laugh at certain points in the film, but I don't think the filmmakers intended me to.

The plot COULD have been good, if done right. Here it is done absolutely wrong. In every conceivable way. For example: humans are cave dwellers and primitives. But at some point, in order to defeat the evil aliens, they will have to learn how to fly a plane. How does a bad screenwriter overcome this obstacle? By having the leader of the aliens teach the main character how to fly a ship. No, you didn't read that wrong. Travolta actually EDUCATES the hero of the movie on how best to defeat him. No, it doesn't make sense when you watch the movie. That is the sad part. This movie is just so bad that it thinks people will accept this plot development. That they will go "OH, Okay, makes sense" and continue eating their popcorn in their air conditioned theater and think nothing of it. Thankfully, every so often, the mainstream American moviegoer grows a brain and decides that enough is enough. They have swallowed all the tripe that they are going to stomach. So they get up and they demand their money back. Or, in this case, they do not go at all. Kudos to you, Americans. You saw Travolta in dreadlocks and you chose "Gladiator" instead. Good call. I commend you.

Hopefully this will be a wakeup call to studio executives everywhere. The action is totally bland and boring. The makeup makes every actor look like they have a runner of snot hanging from their nose (I guess the theory on that one was "Hey, it worked in the "Blair Witch Project"!"). The costume and production design looks sorta like "Planet of the Apes" meets "The Road Warrior" only, you know, shitty. The bad guys are so inept that one wonders how they could figure out a stick shift, let alone take over the planet Earth. When the hero shoots and kills one of their kind, they respond by standing there looking at the corpse and letting him run away. That's right: LETTING him run away. Oh. Nice one. The music is bland. The special effects are cheesy, lame and totally confusing. Maybe a dog would be distracted by the flashy colors that are flashing around, but no human would. Even if you pay really close attention, there is no way in hell you will ever figure out what is going on. Compared to this film, "Titan A.E." looks like "Citizen Kane".

Yeah, this movie is bad. So why the "+"? Well, unlike a lot of shitty movies, this one is at least fun in a "so bad it's hilarious", "Mystery Science Theater" kind of way. More than you can say about "The Grinch". But when that's the best you can say about a film, that's still pretty damn bad.