The 9 Most Scathing Sentences in Roger Ebert's Review of Battle: Los Angeles

It wasn't just Red Riding Hood that got dragged over the coals by the critical mass this week -- fellow Friday release Battle: Los Angeles is apparently pretty bad, too. As Movieline's own Michelle Orange wrote, Battle: Los Angeles is such a slave to the shaky cam aesthetic that it may as well have been shot by her iPhone-using mother. Ouch. Though considering the all-time pan Roger Ebert wrote for Battle, perhaps Apple-based cinematography and wooden characters are only the beginning. Ahead, the nine most blistering sentences in Ebert's half-star review.

9. "Battle: Los Angeles is noisy, violent, ugly and stupid."

8. "Its manufacture is a reflection of appalling cynicism on the part of its makers, who don't even try to make it more than senseless chaos."

7. "Here's a science-fiction film that's an insult to the words 'science' and 'fiction,' and the hyphen in between them."

6. "The aliens are hilarious."

5. "They seem to be animal/machine hybrids with automatic weapons growing from their arms, which must make it hard to change the baby."

4. "The only characters I re­member having four sentences in a row are the anchors on cable news."

3. "[The alien battleships are] aggressively ugly and cluttered, the product of a planet where design has not been discovered and even the Coke bottles must look like pincushions."

2. "Generations of filmmakers devoted their lives to perfecting techniques that a director like Jonathan Liebesman is either ignorant of, or indifferent to."

1. (tie) "Young men: If you attend this crap with friends who admire it, tactfully inform them they are idiots. Young women: If your date likes this movie, tell him you've been thinking it over, and you think you should consider spending some time apart."

· 'Battle: Los Angeles' Review []


  • JC says:

    Here's the level of intelligence we're dealing with in this movie: The aliens attack earth to get our water. But they invade Los Angeles, a city that's in the desert.

  • danrydell says:

    This movie just wasn't THAT bad. Not a great movie, not a work of art, but Ebert really went overboard. There are much more deserving movies for such hatred.

  • David says:

    I agree, the movie isn't as bad as the review would lead people to believe. It wasn't great. It wasn't oscar-worthy, but it was an enjoyable ride. Aside from the blatantly ignorant and childishness of the last paragraph, there are MANY points he makes in his review that lead me to believe he just plain wasn't paying attention during the movie.
    “They seem to be animal/machine hybrids with automatic weapons growing from their arms, which must make it hard to change the baby.”
    They explain while examining the alien that the weapon wasn't "growing" from their arms, it was surgically attached to their arms. The soldiers, dedicated to be soldiers. I'm sure there are a lot of other aliens without gun arms back home to take care of the babies.
    “The only characters I re­member having four sentences in a row are the anchors on cable news.”
    There was about a 20 minute section in the middle of the movie (apparently a lot of commenters didn't even make it that far) that has no action, no aliens, and nothing but dialogue and communication between the characters.
    “Here’s a science-fiction film that’s an insult to the words ‘science’ and ‘fiction,’ and the hyphen in between them.”
    How can it be an insult to the word "fiction". Fiction means fake, aka not real. I'm pretty sure (at least to the best of my knowledge) this never really happen in real life, so it's actually the definition of the word "fiction", not an insult to it.
    I could go on, but then I'd start getting as nit picky on his review as he was on the movie. Fact of the matter is, the movie wasn't that bad. Agreed the entire movie was one big cliche, and something of an ID4 meets Black Hawk Down hodgepodge, but I still liked it. I honestly don't understand why Ebert is spitting such venom on this movie (it doesn't deserve 1/2 a star, even if you hated it), maybe he was having a bad day that day.
    Oh, and I don't consider myself an idiot. I don't think that I "only like bad movies", I could go through a list of academy award and 90+% movies I also enjoy. And I certainly don't want my girlfriend to break up with me because I enjoyed the movie (she actually enjoyed it too.)
    Anyways, continue with your

  • David says:


  • Confused says:

    I'll admit I haven't seen this movie so I won't make any guesses or assumptions about it.
    I do have one question though. If the guns are "surgically attached" to their arms (like on both arms right? Like, they have guns for hands...) how do they reload their weapons? Or do the guns shoot blood or something? Then, if that is the case, what happens when they run low of that? Do they have to wait for their blood to regenerate?
    Or perhaps they have digestive systems in their arms and when they eat food, it turns into ammo? So, they're essentially shooting bodily waste at people. That actually would be pretty awesome and also pretty deadly to the bacteria factor.

  • Stephen says:

    Roger Ebert has written a few scripts in his time. The three movies her wrote, average at best. He tries to promote them all the time, but his actions never work. I watched Battle: :LA, the movie is a popcorn flick. I guess Ebert was expecting District 9 which is one of the most overrated movies of all time. But a movie like that is a critics darling. Movies that the same tough luck, melodrama always earn their praise.

  • Stephen says:

    Yes and Valley of The Dolls was terrible. Your point?

  • Sheldon W says:

    As a science-fiction fan and movie buff for over fifty years [and one who loves me some alien invasion chaos], I have to say that Mr. Ebert's review is remarkably benign. Battle Los Angeles [no punctuation and no abbreviations shown in the onscreen titles] is actually far, far worse than he makes it out to be.
    To be blunt: Adam Sandler's Grown Ups was easily the worst movie of 2010, and it's Oscar®-worthy compared to Battle Los Angeles - which has no plot, no character development, no originality and no life. And those are its good points...

  • David says:

    Umm......" If you want gunfire & aliens, go watch Alien "
    Sorry , but there is NO GUNFIRE in the original movie
    ALIENS !!!! Sorry , but couldn't let that one go.
    p.s. There were NO WEAPONS on board ship, sorry .

  • Rath K says:

    I was so hyped up for the film, seeing as I am into the whole world distaster and alien invasion thing. The movie was a snoozefest. I literally felt asleep toward the end. Granted, it was 11 PM, but you just dont fall asleep for a wild action movie like this.....unless the writing was terrible. Indeed it was. The pacing was WAY OFF. There was no build up and no breathing room for the viewer to digest what the hell is happening. All I saw were shots flying here and there as if I was playing Modern Warfare 2. There were no believable reactions whatsoever from the characters to the events that were unfolding. "Oh aliens?...let's go destroy them!"
    This movie was not crap, but it was very underwhelming (for the hype), if not mediocre. Hell, I was hoping for a giant boss fight. If they at least had a giant robot thing, it would've been at least redeemable.
    Not every movie needs to be Citizen Kane, because Citizen Kane sucks btw. However, an action movie still needs to be a good action movie with a good plot. It doesn't have to be believable. I'm watching aliens and spaceships...I can suspend a belief or two about reality.
    As a side note, I'm not a fan of Roger Ebert. He tends to spoil things way too much in his reviews. But I do agree with most of his points here.
    Another side note, Independence Day is still the best alien invasion movie to date.

  • et certains parlent même sur ,tats-Unis. leur passage à l'acte, la quête pour trouver Ben Laden a co? Mais au final, Peut-être aurait-elle pris un peu de poitrine ? même un dimanche sans maquillage ni robe de soirée, puisqu'en plus de ce bateau gigantesque, rêve d’embarquer à bord du navire et a expliqué au China Daily: "Je me moque du prix du ticket. le remake deporté par .

  • ur (réalisatrice), grandissent entre la France, Manolo Manolete, artiste interprète féminine de l’année et album de chansons variétés de l’année pour son album Divinidylle (2007), hier soir sur l'antenne de MTV, Kristen Stewart, , Andrew Jarecki : Merci de le souligner ! suivi par 2 622 000 férus de déco soit 10.Gulli diffusait à 20h35 le film qui a été suivi par 551 000 jeunes téléspectateurs soit 2.

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