Clogged arteries, post-traumatic stress disorder, severe xenophobia. If you have any of these conditions, I would not see Battle: Los Angeles (trailer). If you’ve just had back surgery, but miss the jostling thrill of high-speed roller coasters however, then park your keister in a comfy theater seat and enjoy the strictly audiovisual thrill.
Remember the first 20 or so minutes from Saving Private Ryan? Take this melee that director Steven Spielberg said tried to capture the gritty reality of WWII combat, and extend it to a full-length 2-hour motion picture. Throw in a dash of aliens and you have Battle: Los Angeles. Despite a short intro for each of the main characters to assign them humanity before (spoiler alert) some die, the meat of the movie follows the course of an automated roll-playing game (RPG for all you gamers out there), as a platoon of marines are dispatched into ground-zero to retrieve lost civilians from the near fallen City of Angels.
Sort of an Independence Day meets Cloverfield, the movie lacks in dialogue. The saving grace to an otherwise action extravaganza is Sgt. Michael Nantz, played by Aaron Eckhart, who returns from retirement for one final call of duty as extraterrestrials descend upon Earth for Her most precious resource: liquid water. A seasoned actor of such fame as Thank You for Smoking and The Dark Knight, Eckhart delivers a well-rounded performance complete with several evocative monologues that brought this reporter back when jaded by all the gun blasts and explosions. Typecast tough girl Michelle Rodriguez and R&B singer Ne-Yo round out a cast of otherwise no-names.