Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Can a Military-Sci-Fi Movie Ever Get the "Military" Right?

Thank the gods you can fast forward through Netflix.

Just watched most (some?) of Starship Troopers. I guess I am going to have to revisit the original Heinlein story. The movie was awful.

The next Military-Sci-Fi flick (that I know of) is Ender's Gamebased on the Orson Scott Card novel of the same name. Given that the original story viewed military action through the lens of a video game - sort of - I don't hold out much hope for the movie. Add to that the fact that it has been through the Hollywood mill for about 4 years, which I'm sure means that the script has been rewritten by the suits at least once. (Think of "Daredevil" when you want to understand what the Hollywood system does to a screenplay, or better, think of "Waterworld" - an interesting premise, destroyed by cliche.)

That said, is it really too much to ask for a little military authenticity in a movie? Even a SciFi Movie? (The last movie I know of that had a hint of authenticity was Shooter. I liked it, but it didn't do too well at the box office.)


Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

"Just watched most (some?) of Starship Troopers."

You have my deepest sympathies.

"That said, is it really too much to ask for a little military authenticity in a movie?"

From what I understand, Transformers (the first one, at least) did pretty good. It wasn't a military movie per se, but there was a significant part done from a military perspective.

Of course, I don't have personal knowledge to compare it to, that's just what I've heard.

greeblie said...

In the Lender's Game audiobook, OSC explained how hard it is to turn the Ender book into a movie. First, you need not 1 or 2 really good kid actors, you need 9 or 10, all of which can only work for a half day. OSC said he had problems with producers who wanted to make all the kids teenagers, who, of course, would be played my 20 somethings. We'll see if the movie works at all.

Comrade Misfit said...

I sat through Starship Troopers in a theater. It has to be one of the top five of the worst movies that I have ever seen (without walking out mid-way).

Mark said...

The only accurately portrayed military sci-fi I have ever seen was an anime which I can't remember the title of at the moment. And I agree Starship Trooper was and is atrocious. The director admitted he didn't even read the book, which should have been required, as the book itself is required reading at several US Military Academies just like Enders Game is.

Roberta X said...

The first thing I said to my date was, "Dammit, Johnny Rico is from the Philippines!" It went downhill from there. (I'm sure glad they didn't try Tunnel In The Sky.)

...You're going to want to avoid reruns of Space: Above And Beyond, which had Tam indignant in the first ten minutes.

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

It's been long enough that I don't remember much of Space: Above and Beyond, except that I did love the fighters. IIRC, it was one of the first sci-fi shows (after Babylon 5) to at least try to approximate real spacecraft physics.