Escape to the Movies: Ender's Game

Adam Jensen_v1legacy

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Sep 8, 2011
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I don't care about the author's personal life and his beliefs. The book is just so goddamn stupid on it's own. The only reason it's famous is because of that twist. Which doesn't make any sense when you stop for literally half a second and think about it. Anyone could do what Ender had done. It's basically a book about a group of grownups who gave full military control to a kid to do what anybody else could have done and they didn't tell him about it because PLOT TWIST.
 

Donald Best

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Nov 1, 2013
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Two wrongs do not make a right. I found this review what I would consider unethical. I rely on critics like movie bob to tell me about movies not the political opinions of the author. So I feel betrayed that I could not separate Bob's poorly informed and offensively expressed in add homonym (pun not intended) attacks of Card himself from what he thought about the movie.

I think Card is mistaken on some of his views on homosexuality. However, I can not distinguish those views as anything but typical for what is still but thankfully a slimming American majority. I would challenge movie bob to review the book Songmaster which is the only significant bit of art where Card tackles the issue of homosexuality quite directly. I found it extremely humane even relatively progressive and in fact Card has been accused of depicting homosexuality as beautiful and natural as a result. Card's views on homosexuality are often offensive to me but they are complex and well thought out. He is clearly grappling with the issue and doing his job as a sci fi writer to help his readers look at the issue too rather than simply ramming an opinion down my esophagus. And that is exactly what the name calling in this review of the movie does.

To me a homophobe is a type of bully who treats the homosexuals he knows poorly and I suspect the ones Card knows are treated like the ones in his books and they may not be happy with the patronizing compassion and respect they receive nor Card's opposing the political agenda's they hold dear but homophobe would probably be too far.

Sorry Bob in this review you engage in name calling which makes this review an act of bulling. In this case you are mistaken but I am not going to boycott you because we all make mistakes and your reviews are good professional work in general.
 

Iceklimber

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kasperbbs said:
i find letting children be in charge of thousands of peoples lives sounds stupid as hell, what if that snotty brat decides that hes bored or wants to take a dump and loses the game on purpose? Well maybe it was explained somehow in the book or the movie
Well actually in the Wikipedia Synopsis it says that Ender believes to be treated unfairly in the final fight and decides to cheat, thereby winning the battle.

And in the movie, he is accused of cheating by the opponents wins against. The tactics he utilizes in the movie also felt like cheating to me for the most part, like using environmental objects to achieve victory rather than skills
 

ShadowGandalf01

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Oct 3, 2011
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I knew nothing about anything going into this. I knew it was based on a book, but knew nothing about the author or the book itself. I just saw the trailer, thought it looked good, went to see it, and I really enjoyed it. I'm actually thinking about getting the book to read too.
 

Mr. Q

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Honestly, this movie didn't really tickle my fancy when the trailers hit. Still, having its author so outspoken against homosexuality is not winning him brownie points.

Cheer up, Bob! Thor: The Dark World is next week! So that's one good reason not to be so glum about November.
 

EmilShmiengura

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[quote="Jim_Callahan" post="6.832741.20350206"
This year, Elysium was pretty decent, if unsubtle. Pacific rim was, if not the best thing ever, still pretty great, and the World's End was pretty much the funniest thing I've seen since hot fuzz.

If you're willing to tolerate a little more surreal and low-budget stuff, John Dies at the End was fun, too.

So that's four science fiction movies that weren't based on comic books, and only one even based on a book, in the last year. Four is more good movies than you get in any other genre in a year, so I'll take it.[/quote]

Valid point. However Pacific Rim was targeted at the comic-book audience and World's End was World's End (excellent but in a league of it's own). John dies at the End was a fluke, I am still amazed at how this movie came to be, wish they were more like that, doubt that they will. Even disregarding all my arguments, we got four this year, I wonder how many they will be next year, or in two years for now. And I won't count JJ productions anymore.
 

WhiteTigerShiro

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LysanderNemoinis said:
You know, I take offense to that, saying that all "old while men" are the same and all think alike.
Remus said:
Most old white men are set in their ways and no matter how wrong their thinking is, they will never change.
*Ahem*
 

WhiteTigerShiro

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LysanderNemoinis said:
I knew Bob was going to touch on (well, bludgeon would probably be a better word) the big "controversy" surrounding the movie, but at the very least I didn't think he'd stoop so low for his political leanings. Because what I took away from this was: Roman Polanski raped a teenage girl, and that's bad...a bit. So it's okay to like his movies! But Orson Scott Card isn't overly fond of gay people (but hasn't physically hurt anyone, just their feelings), and that's horrible. So let's all boycott his movie and shoot it down when any piece of drivel who's creator agreed with Bob would get a free pass, or at the very least a very light panning. While I didn't really care about seeing the movie and never read the books, I think now is the time to give Bob and all those like him a little poke in the eye. Amazon.com here I come, and tomorrow night I'm bringing friends.
Looking at Polanski's films, I don't think Bob has ever reviewed any of them. So I don't know where you get off commenting about "Bob and all those like him" who are supposedly looking the other way for Roman, but not Card. Or is this just you putting words in Bob's mouth because you want to get-up on your own soapbox about something that's neither here nor there?

Edit: Also, I love how you make it a point to downplay Card's anti-gay sentiments to the point of making it seem like he's just mentioned once that he doesn't agree with homosexuality, completely ignoring everything he's done to try and prevent gay marriage. Yes, Roman is also a douche, but that doesn't give everyone who's less douchey a free pass.
 

Axolotl

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Donald Best said:
Two wrongs do not make a right. I found this review what I would consider unethical. I rely on critics like movie bob to tell me about movies not the political opinions of the author. So I feel betrayed that I could not separate Bob's poorly informed and offensively expressed in add homonym (pun not intended) attacks of Card himself from what he thought about the movie.

I think Card is mistaken on some of his views on homosexuality. However, I can not distinguish those views as anything but typical for what is still but thankfully a slimming American majority. I would challenge movie bob to review the book Songmaster which is the only significant bit of art where Card tackles the issue of homosexuality quite directly. I found it extremely humane even relatively progressive and in fact Card has been accused of depicting homosexuality as beautiful and natural as a result. Card's views on homosexuality are often offensive to me but they are complex and well thought out. He is clearly grappling with the issue and doing his job as a sci fi writer to help his readers look at the issue too rather than simply ramming an opinion down my esophagus. And that is exactly what the name calling in this review of the movie does.

To me a homophobe is a type of bully who treats the homosexuals he knows poorly and I suspect the ones Card knows are treated like the ones in his books and they may not be happy with the patronizing compassion and respect they receive nor Card's opposing the political agenda's they hold dear but homophobe would probably be too far.

Sorry Bob in this review you engage in name calling which makes this review an act of bulling. In this case you are mistaken but I am not going to boycott you because we all make mistakes and your reviews are good professional work in general.
Card headed and still funds a hate group. He is a homophobe, there's no two ways about it. Calling him an asshole for this isn't and ad hominem, it's an insult but it's a completely justified one. Also Bob doesn't say the movie is bad because Card's a small minded bigot, he says that Card is a jerk and that the movie is bad for several reasons of it's own unrelated to Card. It would stupid and bizarre for Bob to talk about the movie and not mention the controversy around Card if for no other reason than it's polite to warn people that their actions might help promote a hate group if they don't know about it.
 

Boogie Knight

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Oct 17, 2011
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I'm more than a little curious how many people who think Orson Scott Card is the Devil will overlook absolutely horrendous things by other people. For example, I really like Lovecraft but goddamn that man was racist jerk, pretty much anyone who wasn't a New England gentleman was some atavistic mongrel degenerate. Lovecraft softened his attitudes late in life due to the influence of his friends, but he was a nasty bigot. Then you got actors who remain beloved regardless of their reputation for beating people up, or threatening women with kitchen knives. Not sure if the real issue is Card's opinions or the bubble many people live in where they never have to listen to a contrary opinion.
 
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Thunderous Cacophony said:
Sir Thomas Sean Connery said:
So it sounds like I'm going to completely adore this movie.

I've always felt that since the twist is one of the most well known in fiction, right up there with The Sixth Sense, the best way to play it would be to make it a surprise for Ender, but not the audience.

And I'm rather happy they got rid of the Earth stuff. His cartoonishly evil brother taking over the world via internet forums was completely silly in the book and it would have been silly on film.

I'm also glad they did away with the majority of the whining after the victory. The dirty xeno insect scum deserved every shot fired and if some humans were lost, so be it. After all, the only good bug is a dead bug.
Surprising Ender but not the audience could have been great; you still get the big fancy spectacle battles, then cut to Ender playing what he obviously thinks of as a game, because it looks nothing like the real thing.

Also, I'm not sure if you're being sarcastic (or if there's an Inquisitor standing behind you) with your last point. The whole closing of the book was Ender realising that the buggers didn't understand humans when they first invaded, and that they stopped once they understood they were destroying individuals rather than parts of a hive. Humans, meanwhile, were determined to win the war at all costs, up to and including genocide and child soldiers, although in reality there was no more need for any fighting. The miscommunication is the whole key of the twist ending.
Nah, I'm actually serious.

I'm a big fan of species jingoism in fiction.

If they really didn't think killing humans was bad, they're too stupid to live.

Humanity, Fuck Yeah and such.
 

Darth_Payn

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Aug 5, 2009
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I wasn't too thrilled to see this. Way too much CGI to keep track of anything. As for separating art from artist, that's almost impossible to me, because artists use their art to express their vision, ideas, opinions, and (putting on the David Cage mask) EMOH-SHUNS.

For the life of me, I cannot tell what is going on with Sir Ben Kingsley's face in this movie!
 

ferdinand82

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Oct 17, 2011
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Could someone explain this?
I thought the ending of the book made no sense. If you are training children to be a general for a space-fleet why train them in zero g as soldiers? Why would you try to make them ruthless? It is all a game to these children. They don't know real people will die. Do you cry if a character in GTA dies? Why did you have to have people in the space-fleet? Why wasn't everybody just playing a game on Earth?
 

Jandau

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Dec 19, 2008
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This is what kinda worried me when I first heard about the movie being made - there was no way in hell they'd manage to cram all of the book's plot in a 2 hour film. Shit would have to get cut. Yeah, people will *****, but expecting all the plotlines and little twists to be incorporated into such a small window just wasn't going to happen.

I assumed the Earth plotlines were going to be cut first. While those were solid for their time (and predicted fairly well how some aspects of the internet were going to develop), it did end up overestimating the power of Internet blogging and forums and would come off as silly in this day and age. But even so, I just don't see how they can cut enough without leaving out huge chunks of Ender's development.

That being said, I'm sad to hear Card is a douchenozzle. I only read the book fairly recently (a few months ago) and have even enjoyed the sequel (though it's vastly different in tone). I'll likely see the movie and buy at least some of the remaining books, even though I disagree with him on some issues.
 

Jandau

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Dec 19, 2008
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Captain Pooptits said:
ferdinand82 said:
Could someone explain this?
I thought the ending of the book made no sense. If you are training children to be a general for a space-fleet why train them in zero g as soldiers? Why would you try to make them ruthless? It is all a game to these children. They don't know real people will die. Do you cry if a character in GTA dies? Why did you have to have people in the space-fleet? Why wasn't everybody just playing a game on Earth?
So, like, in the book Ender learns all about the importance of formations and flanking and sacrificing small numbers of troops to gain an advantage inside the zero G team laser tag arena. This benefits him immensely while directing the space battles. Although now you have me wondering how his superiors could have known that he would pick up those skills in laser tag as he's the first one to ever use them in any game of extreme zero g child laser tag ever.

I don't know why they have to be in space... I think maybe the earth was out of FTL communications range with the combat fleet? Dunno.
Yes, Ender was the first who managed to develop the required tactics. That's also why he's the first who "passed", as it were. In the book it's clearly stated that the results so far weren't what they were looking for. They developed a program for training kids in 3D thinking and tactics and the troops produced in there were all great officers and commanders, but not brilliant on the level they were looking for.

As for the fleet needing human pilots, I believe that there's only so much data they can transfer at any given time, enough for the commands, but not enough to give hundreds of pilots and crewmembers real-time uplinks to individual ships.
 

Furrama

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Remus said:
On Orson Scott Card and his prejudice leanings, he's an old white male. That's to be expected. Most old white men are set in their ways and no matter how wrong their thinking is, they will never change. They simply do not have the malleable opinion that young or even middle-aged adults have. I have a neighbor that could very well be a distant relation to Card. When he starts spouting political opinions, I set my mind to sleep mode, grin and bear it because I know nothing I do will change his mind. We have this same problem with our political system, but that's a topic for another forum. Point is, if Card was paid a singular sum of cash for the movie, then not seeing it is taking cash away from the studio, not from Card himself. Unlike most modern artists, Card does not infuse his works with his political or religious leanings (I'm looking at you, Melissa Rosenberg and C.S. Lewis). This makes it really easy to separate the writer from his works. So, in my opinion, if you would like to see the movie because it's a good movie, then do that and forget the background noise for a couple hours.
Card most certainly did infuse his ideals in his writings. It might be more apparent in some works more than others, but plenty of people can point you to a book or two where he preaches for long stints about something, or is trying to work out how gay people work on the page.

At least C.S. Lewis was pretty up front about his works and owned it. The man really went through some crap and there's a lot to respect there. He also wasn't so much about the hate.

People really do put themselves into their works. Sometimes you need a briefing to understand it all, but it's always there. Putting your thoughts and ideals into your work isn't the issue. Preaching whatever also isn't an issue if your audience is right. ( People really do LOVE to be preached to. As long as the preacher is saying something that they agree with.) The problem arises when you don't like what the creator is saying or doing. And no matter how sucky, that's all on you to deal with in whatever way you will. Art is author audience communication. Listen, weigh, and glean what you can. Chuck the rest if it doesn't size up.
 

Brian Tams

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I'm actually kind of glad it wasn't all that. I was also a little torn with paying to see the movie or not, because of Scott Card's comments. I mean, on one hand, yeah, I don't want to support anything with his name attached to it anymore.

But on the other hand, that would have been in no way fair to the directors, writers, and actors (and all the other personnel that goes into making a major motion picture nowadays) because of the comments of one guy. So, yeah, glad to hear I can just wait for it to show up on Netflix or something.

EDIT-Also, was there anything about how Ender's "reward" was basically getting kicked off Earth and told not to come back? I found that pretty depressing in the book.
 

Chessrook44

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Izanagi009 said:
Chessrook44 said:
MCerberus said:
So wait, they got rid of the whole 'invented personalities pushing politics to the extreme for attention and gain, poisoning the well of public discourse' plot line?

You know, the one that's extremely relevant right now?
I guess they needed more time for CGI wanking.
When the book came out it MIGHT have seemed potentially feasible (You know, like how an AI going crazy and nearly starting nuclear war because it didn't know the difference between reality and a simulation, only to be defeated by making it play Tic Tac Toe with itself was potentially feasible back then) but now? Do you REALLY think such a thing is ANYWHERE in the realm of possibility?

Plus, it WAS kind of a side story. Ender was the main story.
fair enough but it probably would have given the movie a bit of weight even if it does seem ridiculous. Also, this is the age when posts, blogs, and certain sites have a fair amount of influence on certain people's lives. Will it be enough to incite revolution, not really, but it certainly can push people in concurrent directions

P.S. you can call me out if you want because I may be overestimating the effect of mob mentality and the internet on that mentality but I do think that Ender's game shouldn't have removed something as relevant and challenging as that.
Personally I'd have to disagree. I'd say the internet has shown LESS of the ability for one person to get lots of power to change the world, and MORE of the ability for groups of people to pressure things into happening or affect the mentality of a few. Nothing to such great degrees.
 

Izanagi009_v1legacy

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Chessrook44 said:
Izanagi009 said:
Chessrook44 said:
MCerberus said:
So wait, they got rid of the whole 'invented personalities pushing politics to the extreme for attention and gain, poisoning the well of public discourse' plot line?

You know, the one that's extremely relevant right now?
I guess they needed more time for CGI wanking.
When the book came out it MIGHT have seemed potentially feasible (You know, like how an AI going crazy and nearly starting nuclear war because it didn't know the difference between reality and a simulation, only to be defeated by making it play Tic Tac Toe with itself was potentially feasible back then) but now? Do you REALLY think such a thing is ANYWHERE in the realm of possibility?

Plus, it WAS kind of a side story. Ender was the main story.
fair enough but it probably would have given the movie a bit of weight even if it does seem ridiculous. Also, this is the age when posts, blogs, and certain sites have a fair amount of influence on certain people's lives. Will it be enough to incite revolution, not really, but it certainly can push people in concurrent directions

P.S. you can call me out if you want because I may be overestimating the effect of mob mentality and the internet on that mentality but I do think that Ender's game shouldn't have removed something as relevant and challenging as that.
Personally I'd have to disagree. I'd say the internet has shown LESS of the ability for one person to get lots of power to change the world, and MORE of the ability for groups of people to pressure things into happening or affect the mentality of a few. Nothing to such great degrees.
Fair enough but influence can spread quite fair even beyond initial contact, while a group of people can only affect a few, those few can affect others in a sequence so while we may not have something like Locke swaying millions, we do have some sort of gradual change