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Ender's Game (2013)

tomatometer

60

Average Rating: 6/10
Reviews Counted: 196
Fresh: 118 | Rotten: 78

If it isn't quite as thought-provoking as the book, Ender's Game still manages to offer a commendable number of well-acted, solidly written sci-fi thrills.

50

Average Rating: 5.9/10
Critic Reviews: 40
Fresh: 20 | Rotten: 20

If it isn't quite as thought-provoking as the book, Ender's Game still manages to offer a commendable number of well-acted, solidly written sci-fi thrills.

audience

66

liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 114,962

My Rating

Movie Info

In the near future, a hostile alien race (called the Formics) have attacked Earth. If not for the legendary heroics of International Fleet Commander Mazer Rackham (Ben Kingsley), all would have been lost. In preparation for the next attack, the highly esteemed Colonel Hyrum Graff (Harrison Ford) and the International Military are training only the best young children to find the future Mazer. Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a shy, but strategically brilliant boy is pulled out of his school to

Feb 11, 2014

$61.7M

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All Critics (196) | Top Critics (40) | Fresh (118) | Rotten (78) | DVD (1)

Enough people attended Ender's Game last weekend to place it at the top of the box office. But could any of them have known how profoundly unspectacular an experience they were in for?

December 10, 2013 Full Review Source: Grantland
Grantland
Top Critic IconTop Critic

While the picture loses some plot tension by assuring the viewer that Ender is basically an okay kid, it gains by showing the growth of the boy into his destiny as "the One."

November 19, 2013 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Straightforward, a bit literal-minded, very faithful to the book and largely compelling.

November 18, 2013 Full Review Source: Salon.com
Salon.com
Top Critic IconTop Critic

If you dislike child actors, you might derive a perverse satisfaction from seeing dozens of them look so unhappy to be onscreen.

November 18, 2013 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There are times when a certain grimness weighs on the movie that you wish for more humor. But overall it's an absorbing and thought-provoking spectacle.

November 18, 2013 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Hard to comprehend and even harder to endure.

November 4, 2013 Full Review Source: New Yorker
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It is its book, put on the screen without any new thought whatsoever. A seventh grader could watch it and write a passable essay about it. I doubt they'd have much fun with it, though.

April 8, 2014 Full Review Source: Movie Mezzanine
Movie Mezzanine

The battle scenes are spectacular but lifeless and hard to engage with. We're watching a cascade of computer-game imagery.

February 21, 2014 Full Review Source: Independent
Independent

It was a bit like standing in a room where someone is playing a video game on a screen and you're not actually taking part in it but you have to watch interminably this game being played and it's just really a bit boring.

February 18, 2014 Full Review Source: At the Movies (Australia)
At the Movies (Australia)

I thought this was a pretty witless affair.

February 18, 2014 Full Review Source: At the Movies (Australia)
At the Movies (Australia)

An engaging and exciting sci-fi flick to bring out the 12-year-old in all of us.

February 7, 2014 Full Review Source: Daily Record [UK]
Daily Record [UK]

Although it's far from perfect and it's in need of a few tune-ups, Ender's Game does lay the groundwork for what could be a satisfying saga.

January 30, 2014 Full Review Source: PopMatters
PopMatters

Newcomers will likely be left wondering what all the fuss was about in the first place.

January 22, 2014 Full Review Source: The Verge
The Verge

From its grave, Full-of-Portent-and-Moment start 'til its grave, Full-of-Portent-and-Moment end, this flick's got a severe case of the Messiah Complex. Lots of human-phobia here--it's 100-percent gravitas and humourless inhumanity.

December 27, 2013 Full Review Source: Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

A commendable sc-fi drama, this serious film offers up some great themes and some grand visuals.

December 24, 2013 Full Review Source: Big Hollywood
Big Hollywood

Visualmente desinteressante, moralmente confuso, povoado por personagens aborrecidos e entediante na maior parte do tempo.

December 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

The film's own dilemma might be best expressed by Ender, who challenges Graff, "What are you going to do? Waste millions on a loser?" It's a dilemma Ender's Game can't resolve.

December 17, 2013 Full Review Source: PopMatters
PopMatters

A lot of Ender's Game plays like Starship Troopers: The Early Years.

December 10, 2013 Full Review Source: The Aristocrat
The Aristocrat

Asa Butterfield stars opposite a grumblebum Harrison Ford in an expensive, elaborately mounted, tedious film with one huge problem - it has no second act. You literally get to the end of the film and think: "Hang on. That's it?"

December 6, 2013 Full Review Source: 3AW

Full of mixed messages and strange symbolism, its weirdness is also its (limited) charm ... Trippy, confusing, strangely slow and contained, it certainly exists in its own bonkers world, and, as such, is, at least, an odd original.

December 5, 2013 Full Review Source: ABC Radio (Australia)
ABC Radio (Australia)

This efficient adaptation proves extremely watchable, and still packs an emotional punch.

December 5, 2013 Full Review Source: Flicks.co.nz
Flicks.co.nz

It's been a strong year for science fiction... And now Ender's Game comes along to make that resurgence look like the real thing.

December 4, 2013 Full Review Source: FILMINK (Australia)
FILMINK (Australia)

Ender's Game certainly looks and feels serviceable, but lacks the sting to emerge as a serious contender in a crowded market.

December 1, 2013 Full Review Source: The Sunday Age

A biting morality tale with themes of power, manipulation, child soldiers and genocide. Hood's superb screenplay quickly sets up the premise and immediately involves us ... is a powerful, disturbing and thrilling experience. Unforgettable

November 30, 2013 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

The conclusion does pack a shock-and-awe punch that elevates and validates all that builds up before it--almost.

November 24, 2013 Full Review Source: TheMovieReport.com
TheMovieReport.com

Audience Reviews for Ender's Game

This is not a game.

Good Movie! Despite all the odds, Ender's Game winds up as a very good movie that just barely misses on being a great one. Perhaps the films biggest strength is its production design, the technical team did an outstanding job of bringing the environments of the battle school to life, the zero gravity combat scenes being some of the films biggest highlights. It's not all perfect however, there is a little problem with some of the heavy exposition dumps in the film. Plus a couple of the actors (most notably Viola Davis) seem lost and don't know what kind of movie they're supposed to be doing. The biggest problem with Ender's Game is the incredibly fast pace, which isn't an immediate issue, but a lot of story and character development suffers. Overall though, this film was worth the long gestation period. It delivers more than we had a right to expect. Orson Scott Card may be homophobic but the powerful message at the heart of this film says much more than the average Hollywood film is capable of delivering.

The Earth was ravaged by the Formics, an alien race seemingly determined to destroy humanity. Seventy years later, the people of Earth remain banded together to prevent their own annihilation from this technologically superior alien species. Ender Wiggin, a quiet but brilliant boy, may become the savior of the human race. He is separated from his beloved sister and his terrifying brother and brought to battle school in orbit around earth. He will be tested and honed into an empathetic killer who begins to despise what he does as he learns to fight in hopes of saving Earth and his family.
August 3, 2014
MANUGINO
Manu Gino

Super Reviewer

Meaningless with little thought to bigger issues. Really not acted or executed well. I'd prefer watching a rerun of Star Wars. Also, the fact that the story was written by the anti-equality NOM man Card makes the film unworthy of the time of fair-minded audiences.
August 1, 2014
cchclaw

Super Reviewer

A great story with great cast but such a waste since the execution didn't turn out to be a perfect one.. Given a wonderful cast such as Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld, Abigail Breslin, Harrison Ford, Viola Davis, and Sir Ben Kingsley and all you can make is a decent movie?? Well there's definitely something wrong here.. For the story itself, I think they could write a better script since the ending quite disappointing for me.. Overall, it's still a nice movie to be watched with family and it's quite entertaining, but too bad it could have been a great one..
July 20, 2014
ajaymuthecooldevils
Sanjaya 丘耀文

Super Reviewer

Gavin Hood's Ender's Game is science fiction simplicity.The film feels shorter than its 110 minute run time; not that it's edge of the seat exciting, but more due to the hastened pace of the story. The storytelling isn't choppy; however, there is definitely more to be explored when it comes to the plot details. The ending is also anticlimactic, leaving a feeling of unfulfillment.The sci-f concept and the high use of effects deliver a visual delight, thus partially making up for the film's shortcomings.Like the hasty pace, the characters lack depth in detail, although the actor's performances are acceptable. Asa Butterfield has a voice that lacks range, while Abigail Breslin is highly underused. Hailee Steinfeld and Ben Kingsley are pleasant surprises.Ender's Game isn't perfect, yet it is more than an average sci-fi picture. If there is time to spare, then feel free to play the game.
March 30, 2014
skactopus
JY Skacto

Super Reviewer

    1. Colonel Hyrum Graff: We won. That's all that matters.
    2. Ender Wiggin: No. The way we win matters.
    – Submitted by T? Anh C (3 months ago)
    1. Ender Wiggin: Bernard is living proof that chimps still fly in space.
    – Submitted by Sarah W (5 months ago)
    1. Ender Wiggin: In the moment when I truly understand my enemy, understand him well enough to defeat him, then in that very moment I also love him.
    – Submitted by Rex John A (8 months ago)
    1. Sergeant Dap: You think you're the smartest kid in the school.
    2. Ender Wiggin: No sir.
    3. Sergeant Dap: You will never be a commander! I will never salute you!
    4. Ender Wiggin: Yes you will sergeant.
    – Submitted by Higgs B (8 months ago)
    1. Mazer Rackham: He's abandoning his entire fleet.
    2. Colonel Hyrum Graff: He's in command. There's no stopping him now.
    – Submitted by Higgs B (8 months ago)
    1. Petra Arkanian: Ender. What do we do?
    2. Bean: Ender. The enemy's gate is down.
    – Submitted by Higgs B (8 months ago)
View all quotes (33)

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