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Sci-Fi - Invasion of Earth

Battle Los Angeles (2011)

Duration1h 56m
RatingsUK: 12A, USA: PG-13, Norway: 15
Source of storyA sort of original screenplay
DirectorJonathan Liebesman,
Writers/ScriptChristopher Bertolini
StarringAaron Eckhart, Bridget Moynahan, Michael Peña, Michelle Rodriguez,
RatingsIMDb:  5.7 by 173,649 people. Rotten Tomatoes: 36% by 210 critics.

Elevator Pitch: Staff Sergeant Michael Nantz is on the verge of retirement when earth is attacked by aliens, and he is instructed to take a hastily assembled crew forward of the defensive lines in Los Angeles to rescue some civilians. It is intended that the forward positions be carpet bombed in a couple of hours, limiting the time they have available for the rescue. The team go forward and suffer casualties, making it to the civilians and then start back. Nantz’s team are enhanced by other who they meet on the way and eventually they find that the aliens actually do have air support but that it is vulnerable due to the central control. Nantz decides to find and disable it, so changing the course of the war. Will he be successful?

Content: No sex or nudity, but a bit of drinking as the platoon bond and we find out a bit about them. Once out on the road there is a lot of shouting and almost continuous gunfire, the aliens seeming to have similar weapons to the earth people. At one point an alien is eviscerated and it seems that they are a sort of gooey mess housed within a mechanical structure. Once the alien aircraft are in the fray things are seriously problematical for the military. A helicopter is shot out of the sky filled with wounded soldiers. On the ground the guys use a variety of vehicles to take the civilians to safety.

A View: This film was not well liked possibly because any enemy could have been substituted for the aliens, and some critics have seen similarities between this outing and “Black Hawk Down”. There was much too much shouting for me, and actually I did not realise that our hero was supported by different soldiers as the drama progressed, except for Michelle Rodriguez, who wore her helmet in a particularly irritating way. But if we accept the limitations of the plot the set pieces were quite well done so you could have it on while doing your knitting,

Additional Info: This film is reputed to have been based on a real WWII event when a possible Japanese aircraft was seen over Los Angeles and 1440 rounds of AA ammo fired.  

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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