Battle Los Angeles this weekend. As I was checking times, a young lady buying tickets asked the teller, "Is it true that it really happened?". The guy behind the glass looked up and, holding back a smirk, confirmed to her that it indeed actually happened. I'm sure she figured it out about 10 minutes into the film. The real Battle of Los Angeles was an interesting incident in 1942 that has captured the imagination of U.F.O. followers ever since, but it has absolutely nothing to do with this film. I really didn't expect to be saying anything about it here, but it caught me by surprise in a way that I thought should be commented on. You see, I was expecting a science fiction film. What I saw was a very nicely directed war film. There wasn't the slightest trace of what sci-fi fans usually go to see, and that is a good thing. Who needs to be teased? If this is a war movie, then by God, let me put on my marine helmet and enjoy it as such. In other words, the movie earned my respect for NOT trying to be science fiction.
Saving Private Ryan, but I think war movie buffs will eat it up.
So my hat goes off to John Liebesman for having a clear vision for what he was trying to do and then doing it well. Yes, this is a Marine pride film, but not in the usually cheesy manner that these guys are sometimes portrayed in Hollywood. No, this is one that does a decent job of actually honoring the soldier hero. Hoo-aah.
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