Ender's Game

Ender's Game

3.2 5
Director: Gavin Hood

Cast: Asa Butterfield, Harrison Ford, Hailee Steinfeld


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A brilliant young strategist rises to the top of his class in Battle School while training to defend Earth against hostile aliens intent on exterminating the entire human race in this sci-fi epic based on the celebrated novel. In the not-too-distant future, our planet has come under attack from a malevolent race of aliens known as the Formics. Incredibly, fearless…  See more details below


A brilliant young strategist rises to the top of his class in Battle School while training to defend Earth against hostile aliens intent on exterminating the entire human race in this sci-fi epic based on the celebrated novel. In the not-too-distant future, our planet has come under attack from a malevolent race of aliens known as the Formics. Incredibly, fearless International Fleet Commander Mazer Rackham (Ben Kingsley) sent them fleeing back into the stars, becoming a living legend in the process. But decorated Colonel Hyrum Graff (Harrison Ford) knows that the Formics will soon return even stronger than they were before, and he's determined to find a new hero who can meet them head on. Enter Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a modest young man with vast untapped potential. Upon being recruited into Battle School, Ender partakes in a grueling series of simulations, effortlessly mastering every challenge presented to him. Celebrated by his peers and respected by his superiors, Ender is quickly promoted to Command School, where the one and only Mazer Rackham provides him with the knowledge and tools needed to save mankind from certain extinction. As the final battle approaches, Ender prepares to embrace his destiny as one of the greatest heroes in the history of planet Earth.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
Based on a novel by Orson Scott Card, Ender's Game takes place in a futuristic Earth that is still reeling from an alien attack five decades earlier. Convinced the aliens (called 'Formics') still present a threat, the International Military, led by Col. Hyrum Graff (Harrison Ford), have launched an operation to train the best and brightest young children in the hope of finding a mind capable of winning the next great war between humans and Formics. Graff becomes convinced this mind belongs to Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a brilliant misfit with just the right balance of compassion and killer instincts. Graff's hunch leads Ender to battle school, where he is tasked with mastering difficult war games, completing intellectual and psychological tests, and establishing himself as a respected leader among his peers. Eventually, he is expected to command his own fleet of soldiers in a very real war. If Ender's Game is anything, it's efficient. The film feels like a series of strategic moves designed to produce the optimal outcome, much like its protagonist acts on the battlefield. While it fails to impart the same level of emotional impact as its source novel, director Gavin Hood (X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Rendition) has a no-nonsense approach that refuses to condescend to a young audience by whitewashing matters of war, politics, or the training of young children to become soldiers. Although the movie suffers from a weak script, Butterfield and his co-stars, most notably Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit), do admirable work with the material. Butterfield's smallest gestures -- a ghost of a smile here, a furrowed brow there, his unfailingly tense posture -- give Ender's Game some much needed soul. While his role is small, Suraj Partha also excels as the serious, loyal soldier Alai. Another challenge presented by the book: Most of the story takes place in battle school and revolves around rival teams of children ("armies") playing simulated war games in a lavish zero-gravity training room. This could have easily dragged, but Hood, if anything, amps up the pace and turns the games into some of the film's most interesting scenes. Battle school is a world with its own internal politics: those within the child armies, and those within the higher ranks. Harrison Ford, Viola Davis, and Ben Kingsley make up those higher ranks. Surprisingly, it's the veteran actors' performances that highlight the screenplay's weaknesses. Davis is largely relegated to mournful glances in Ender's direction as he is stripped, piece by piece, of his innocence, while Ford alternates awkwardly between gruff yet benevolent father figure and cold, unfeeling military strategist. Kingsley, in the role of a legendary war hero named Mazer Rackham, has a complicated facial tattoo that seems to exist to imply battle-hardened moral ambiguity in place of an actual performance. Despite its drawbacks, Ender's Game is a visually spectacular, tightly paced film that is certainly a win in terms of adapting a seriously complicated novel.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Summit Inc/Lionsgate
Region Code:
[Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Audio Commentary; "Ender's World: The making of Ender's Game"; Featurette (Blu-ray exclusive); "Inside the mind game" featurette (Blu-ray exclusive); Deleted/extended scenes with optional Audio Commentary by Gavin Hood

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Asa Butterfield Ender Wiggin
Harrison Ford Colonel Hyrum Graff
Hailee Steinfeld Petra Arkanian
Abigail Breslin Valentine Wiggin
Ben Kingsley Mazer Rackham
Viola Davis Major Gwen Anderson
Moisés Arias Bonzo Madrid
Jimmy "Jax" Pinchak Peter Wiggin
Suraj Parthasarathy Alai
Conor Carroll Bernard
Khylin Rhambo Dink Meeker
Aramis Knight Bean
Nonso Anozie Sergeant Dap
Tony Mirrcandani Admiral Chjamrajnager
Edrick Browne Eros Tech Officer Hendee
Han Soto Lieutenant Soto
Jasmine Kaur Professor
Wendy Miklovic Female Doctor
Kyle Clements Young Mazer Rackham
Brandon Soo Hoo Fly Molo
Andrea Powell Theresa Wiggin
Stevie Ray Dallimore John Wiggin
Cameron Gaskins Slattery (Leopard Army)
Caleb Thaggard Stilson
Chris Coakley Stilson Buddy #1
Chase Walker Stilson Buddy #2
Gavin Hood Giant

Technical Credits
Gavin Hood Director,Screenwriter
Post 23 Animator
C. Scott Baker Set Decoration/Design
Victor Barbosa Animator
Elizabeth Bernard Animator
Liz Bernard Animator
Greg Berry Art Director
Troy Breeding Makeup
Mattias Brunosson Animator
Stephen Buckley Animator
Orson Scott Card Producer
Robert Chartoff Producer
Christine Bieselin Clark Costumes/Costume Designer
David Coatsworth Executive Producer
Scott Dace Animator
Danetracks, Inc. Sound Editor,Sound/Sound Designer
Dane A. Davis Sound/Sound Designer
Yves de Bono Special Effects Supervisor
Cosmas Demetriou Set Decoration/Design
Kate Dowd Casting
Benjamin Edelberg Set Decoration/Design
Rex Fang Animator
Andrew Farrell Animator
Sarah Forrest Set Decoration/Design
Thomas Frohling Set Decoration/Design
Sean Haworth Production Designer
Amy Heinz Set Decoration/Design
Lynn Hendee Producer
James Horner Score Composer
David Humphreys Animator
Steve Jablonsky Score Composer
Aaron Kim Johnston Associate Producer
Mariya Kalachova Animator
John Kasprzak Animator
Stephen Kelloway Animator
Noelle King Set Decoration/Design
Alex Kurtzman Producer
Magnolia Ku Lea Animator
Ryan Leeper Animator
Bill Lischak Executive Producer
Donald M. McAlpine Cinematographer
Linda McDonough Producer
Jay Meagher Sound Mixer
Roberto Orci Producer
John Papsidera Casting
Cliff Plumer Executive Producer
Anshuman Prasad Set Decoration/Design
Deborah del Prete Executive Producer
Gigi Pritzker Producer
Ben Procter Production Designer
Ted Ravinett Executive Producer
Venkatesh Roddam Associate Producer
Mark Della Rossa Animator
Mandy Safavi Executive Producer
Lee Smith Editor
Zach Staenberg Editor
Frankie Stellato Animator
Jeff Struthers Animator
Patrick M. Sullivan Set Decoration/Design
Ed Ulbrich Producer
Vectorsoul Animator
Terry Veer Animator
Brian A. Waits Set Decoration/Design
Clint Wallace Art Director
Christopher Walsh Animator
Kim Winther Asst. Director
Evelyn Yoa Animator
Ivy Zhong Executive Producer

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Ender's Game
1. Scene 1 [7:53]
2. Scene 2 [9:00]
3. Scene 3 [8:37]
4. Scene 4 [4:47]
5. Scene 5 [6:11]
6. Scene 6 [5:15]
7. Scene 7 [7:05]
8. Scene 8 [4:48]
9. Scene 9 [2:36]
10. Scene 10 [6:09]
11. Scene 11 [8:07]
12. Scene 12 [3:18]
13. Scene 13 [5:29]
14. Scene 14 [7:16]
15. Scene 15 [8:20]
16. Scene 16 [6:08]


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Ender's Game 3.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
SydneyShepherd11 More than 1 year ago
Very much enjoyed this film adaption. Give us a sequel!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Harrison Ford looked like he wanted to be anywhere but in this movie and if you were stuck in the theater watching this you would want to be anywhere but there.
Arn More than 1 year ago
It leaves the book for special effects but it entertaining.
Nadina85 More than 1 year ago
Ender's Game as a film had a lot of work to do from the outset. It not only had to overcome years of developmental hell but had to contend with severe controversy surrounding the Orson Scott Card's questionable ideals as well as high expectations from the series' legion of die-hard fans. Now, I haven't ever read the books so I had no basis of comparison when going into the film but I did have high hopes. Based on the trailer, the movie looked awesome! Unfortunately, for me, Ender's Game did not defy the odds. The story follows Ender Wiggin, a newly recruited member of a battle school designed to train young children to fight a war against the alien forces that attacked Earth years prior. Ender finds himself alienated and must overcome incredible pressure from everyone, and most of all, from himself, in order to lead the team to victory. I can't really say if the plot remains faithful to Card's original novel, but I did enjoy the idea of it. For the time it was written, it was probably uniquely original, but being late to the game, I can't say I haven't already seen it all before. Despite the predictability of the storyline, my biggest gripe was that it felt like key elements were missing --- not plot holes exactly, just like critical scenes had been cut at the last minute, like there were gaps in important information. Instead, it relies heavily on these grand info dumps from Wiggin via the narration and the character development and storyline suffer because of this. Another big problem I had was with the story's overall cohesiveness, in that there is none. The whole movie feels as though it takes place in the matter of a week and because of this, there's very little depth. I lost track of time watching it, probably because I was doing other things other than watching it. In short, I just didn't care. You would think that the star-studded cast (Harrison Ford, Ben Kingsley, Hailee Steinfeld, Viola Davis & Abigail Breslin) would be enough to save this drowning movie, but alas, such was not the case. Breslin has but a minor role and Davis, arguably the best in her role, isn't featured nearly enough to leave a lasting impression. Ford and Kingsley deliver passable performances, but they hardly shine. And newcomer Asa Butterfield is wooden and stiff in his role as Ender. I don't know if the character in the book is this way, but he's incredibly unrelatable in the film. Things come to him far too easily and I had no idea why he was appointed to be the leader of the group. Nothing he said or did really gave me a good feeling about him. Honestly, I didn't care about a single one of the characters and if you don't care then what's the point? I guess the look and feel of the film were about the only things I think the filmmakers got right. The set and cinematography were spot-on, everything I imagined from the spacey, sci-fi setting. I want to play in that Battle Room. So. Freaking. Amazing. But other than that, Ender's Game was an utter fail as a stand alone movie. If it's done anything positive, it's only made me want to read the book that much more.
AlchemystAZ More than 1 year ago
So-called Young Adults may be the intended box-office target, and the Hero is fun to watch in an outer-space Hunger Games spin-up with higher goals. I love scifi, so as an old geezer, I enjoy the special effects, comparing them to the garage-born one-man efforts of the 1950s black-and-white movies. I am amazed at the resolution in HD closeups, where makeup does NOT hide skin problems, intentionally or not? This movie might be an update of the 1950s TV serials, where a young boy is part of the crew AND a hero model for the young boy watching. Think ROCKY JONES SPACE RANGER. The hero here is an amazing actor. The ending seems rushed and tacked on and unbelievable even as it is properly moralistic. As usual, I cannot suggest how to approach a fix for that. Maybe a heartwarming sequel?