Dissecting Trailers: “Battleship”
By Kyle Anderson on August 9, 2011
From almost the first fifteen seconds of watching this trailer, I knew I’d have to dissect it like nobody’s business, and by the time it was over, I began to cry. Dear God, what horror hath humanity beset upon us?
Let’s get into it, shall we? First the trailer:
0:05 – 0:13: Generic blues rock with shots of water, naval fleet, and surfing. See? The military is cool.
0:13 – 0:25: Hot blonde on top of standard generic hero guy on a beach. They discuss what he’s going to say when asking her father’s permission to marry her, hoping of course that her father is easily swayed by unimaginative, sappy love-talk and not some hard-ass.
0:26 – 0:27: The music cuts out and the screen goes black. What’s missing here is a record scratch.
0:28 – 0:30: Oh, of course. Liam Neeson is her dad and he doesn’t like the kid AND they’re both in the Navy. Shagging the boss’ daughter is never a good idea, people.
0:31 – 0:35: Quick montage of kid joining the navy and goofing around while Neeson disapproves. Neeson says that this guy “went from enlisted to an officer faster than anyone in the history of the United States Navy.” Can’t he just be a guy in the Navy? Does he HAVE to be the best person ever to set foot on a ship?
0:36 – 0:40: Hero is playing soccer and apparently that’s a bad thing. He doesn’t APPEAR to be fighting, but Girlfriend looks on disapprovingly and Neeson says he’s “never, ever seen a man waste himself better than you.” I guess I understand; playing soccer is really a lame idea. If you play it means you’re….bad at Navy-ing. Maybe the USN has a very strict policy on vuvuzelas.
0:40 – 0:45: Hero is aboard a ship and can apparently see the gorgeous blonde waiting for him, looking upset that he’s on duty. Neeson says “What my daughter sees in you is a great mystery to me.” Probably she just likes the bad boy to piss off her clearly very overprotective father. Nah, I bet they’re really in love. What do I know?
0:41 – 0:48: “Enjoy these naval exercises, Harper, they’re likely to be your last,” says Neeson, “First you sneak around during some kind of important speech, then you boink my daughter, and let’s not forget the whole soccer fiasco! There’s just no room for minor indiscretions in MY navy, son!”
0:50 – 0:53: Oh, of course it’s the first day of naval exercises. Nobody ever has a problem on day 4. “Look, if we can get through the first day without creating an international incident, we’ve got a 99% success rate. Just please, don’t fuck up on the first day, okay?”
0:55 – 1:02: They see an unidentified object off the something-something that can’t be picked up on the scanner. But what could it be, I ask you? I think the real threat here is letting a vampire join the Navy.
1:03 – 1:08: Of course Harper has to be one of the ones to check it out. Just his luck. What a crappy day this apparently very amazing Navy person is having.
1:09 – 1:16: It’s a big, huge metal structure in the middle of the frigging ocean; By all means, stand on it. *shrug* “Duhhh, I don’t know what this is. Let me touch it some more.”
1:17 – 1:19: It threw him off with some kind of electrical discharge. I am so very shocked about this.
1:20 – 1:23: “Get out of the water and return to your ship.” But wait, something else is happening with the thing.
1:24 – 1:29: It appears… it… it looks like it has created a force field all the way up into space. Let me say that again: Space. Well that’s…that’s not something that things on Earth can do.
1:30 – 1:34: Whatever it is, it affects radar and makes a Transformers noise.
1:35 – 1:39: The already quite huge thing surfaces to reveal an even bigger object/boat thing.
1:40 – 1:44: And it can fly.
1:45 – 1:48: And it just likes playing leap frog.
1:49 – 1:51: Their facial expressions more or less resemble mine, though mine includes the face you make when you’ve just seen an annoying woman at the DMV miss her number being called because she was talking to herself.
1:52 – 1:58: It’s way the hell up in the air and fires things that look like giant version of the pegs used in the classic board game “Battleship,” a game that bears no resemblance to what’s going on here, save the boats.
1:59 – 2:02: The navy is going to fire the crap out of their weapons.
2:03 – 2:04: They fire the crap out of their weapons.
2:05 – 2:09: Jesus Christ, this is the movie version of “Battleship.” BATTLESHIP! The game you play only when you’re bored to death at age 6-12. The one everybody cheated at because no one would know. That “Battleship?” I think I’ve been playing it wrong all these years. I had no idea one of us was supposed to be aliens. That would have made the thing way more enjoyable. “G-14.” “Miss because I flew straight up in the air and dodged it.” “Aww man, why do I always have to be the stupid old United States?!” Why the hell would aliens have boats? And how did those giant ships LAND IN THE WATER without anybody even noticing it? And is Liam Neeson going to have a confrontational moment with the leader of the alien wherein he’s supposed to deliver the line “You sunk my battleship,” and make it in any way believable? He is, isn’t he? Goddammit. I’d rather take a battle-shit.
-Kanderson has stormed away from the computer in disgust, but thanks you for reading and invites you to follow him on teh TWITTERS