Review: Battle LA

I can't say I felt the slightest degree of excitement for this after seeing the posters or trailers for it. I mean even the horrific song song played in the trailer should be enough to deter anyone from seeing this. Anyway, Battle LA follows a marine force responding to an alien attack in Los Angeles.

I wouldn't call myself a fan of Jonathan Liebersman, I'll even happily admit to liking The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning but his direction here is pretty atrocious. The camera shot and editing are frantic - jerking, zooming and cutting constantly throughout the film - so much so that at point it's difficult to understand what's happening. Even thing like transitions from dark to light become unpleasant and head-spinning. It's just generally pretty chaotic - you might think this would work for a sci-fi film but it really doesn't and just results in you wanting to look away from the screen.

The characters are contrived and poorly developed. They're even introduced one by one at the start of the film, which is completely pointless because when the manic action starts, it becomes near impossible to distinguish one character from another. We see the typical clichéd soldier getting married, soldier with pregnant wife (We even see him kiss her belly - come on!), tough female soldier and troubled superior haunted by the death of his men in combat. Maybe it works for an American audience, but as a Brit I find the whole "America! Fuck Yeah!" type attitude that all the characters have a bit ridiculous and it makes for a rather cringe-worthy film. It also leads to some appalling dialogue and unlikeable characters. I personally, had no interest whether any character survived - in fact, I think you'd be better rooting for the aliens.

On a positive side, the special effects are pretty decent and the high point for me was when they dissected one of the aliens - I don't know what that says about me.

Oh and it's also loud. Too loud. Maybe I'm just an old man - it's too loud, it's too bright, it's too clichéd - Maybe you'll go and love it? Although my advice is you could pick something far superior in bargain bin at any supermarket. I think even Christopher Biggins (Or Rip Taylor if you're in the US) in an army uniform with a shotgun would have been more believable than this tosh.

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