Under the Radar

Will Universal Sink Its Own Battleship?

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"There is no weapon system in the world that comes even close to the visible symbol of enormous power represented by the battleship." -- General P.X. Kelly, USMC (Ret.)

Universal has released a trailer for the new mega military-vs-aliens-and-dad-vs-daughter’s-boyfriend movie. Battleship, they say, is an “epic action-adventure that unfolds across the seas, in the skies and over land as our planet fights for survival blah blah blah…” It’s based on and named for the famous Hasbro game involving two little plastic flotillas and numerous red and white pegs. From the looks of this trailer, it will be exactly like the game…except for the aliens, and the spaceships of course.

It’s inconveniently centered on characters from the USS John Paul Jones and USS Sampson, but Battleship is definitely a better name for a movie than Guided Missile Destroyer. Less creative than The DDGs vs. the Sorta-like Transformers from Outer Space perhaps, but say one thing for it—it does have name recognition.

We know a few things from the trailer:

·Liam Neeson (the Admiral) doesn’t like his daughter’s boyfriend, who is a rebellious mustang officer—that’s new.

·The aliens cannot detect the approach of a couple hundred displaced tons of warship approaching, but one hapless sailor on the front stoop gets them all riled up.

·VBSS teams are now only three personnel, but it’s okay because one of them has a minigun and she can sing too.

·The aliens have a really funny doorbell that not only shocks you fifty feet backward through the air, it creates a giant force field bubble to keep everyone locked in.

·The commander of the USS Sampson has great fashion sense.

·At least one of the Iowa class battleships has been added back to the Naval Vessel Register.

·The illegitimate love children of the Transformers and Skyline aliens are alive and well and living in the Pacific.

To be fair, this may actually be a good movie. We expected Battle Los Angeles to suck and we actually liked it. Of course, we expected Skyline to suck and found it to suck far worse than we could have dreamed…so who knows? Certainly the graphics and cinematography (and the BUDGET) have the breadth and grandeur of an epic film, and Neeson has gravitas to spare. The younger cast members seem to have potential, even though one of them is a vampire and let’s face it—the movie has a battleship in it, and they shoot 16” guns. There is no word, however, whether it’s the Iowa or the Wisconsin playing the big ship’s role.

We sincerely hope the movie is awesome, if for no other reason than battleships have a grandeur and majesty that deserve respect. Also because some in the sci-fi world needs to make things right with the Navy for how badly their battleships and nuclear submarines were treated last year off the coast of Venezuela.  (Go straight to about 6:50 or so).

Stay tuned to Military.com next week when we’ll reveal trailers from the upcoming blockbuster Candyland, in which the harried remnants of America’s military defend the Candy Cane Forest and Gum Drop Mountain from hordes of giant mutant insects bent on world domination.

Mad Duo Clear

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