Mixed or average reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 39
  2. Negative: 5 out of 39
  1. Reviewed by: Scott Bowles
    Nov 1, 2013
    Most Ender's fans, of course, won't care about comparisons and consider the film adaptation a long-awaited victory in itself. Those fresh to the tale — or at least expecting something fresh from it — may wonder what the fuss was about.
  2. Reviewed by: Chris Cabin
    Oct 31, 2013
    Gavin Hood relays a vague sense of what it's like to live in duty, and yet at a distance from one's home, but this vision of the future never rouses, never asks to be remembered.
  3. Reviewed by: Alan Scherstuhl
    Nov 1, 2013
    Some of the movie isn't bad.
  4. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Oct 31, 2013
    Not only does Ender's Game have many scenes in zero gravity, but this zero-sum fiasco has zero drama, zero suspense, zero humor, zero charm and zero appeal.
  5. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Oct 31, 2013
    Ender’s Game, the book, may have a special place in pop-lit. The movie, however, is as special as a migraine.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 385 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 91 out of 147
  2. Negative: 30 out of 147
  1. Nov 1, 2013
    Go into it knowing that some things from the book will be change. That's just how it is for any book to movie adaptation. On its own merits this is a fantastic sci fi movie that I hope will do well enough for them to merit a sequel. Full Review »
  2. Nov 1, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. A lot of surface structure, but no heart. In the end, bedazzling graphical scenes took front seat to capturing the depth and conflict the majority of the characters in the book go through. There are quite a few of the book's characters present, but really, just a hollow shell of what made them lovable throughout the series. The 2 most important characters were severely reduced; Ender and Graff. This movie failed to capture any of the depth that is Edner Wiggin. Graff went from a very complex and morally conflicted character to a soulless bureaucrat who's only interest is results.

    Locke and Demosthenes were completely eradicated from the story, and Peter was only present for 4 minutes of the film.

    A 4 year story was reduced to just over a month, which was impossible to follow at the brisk pace the movie moved at. Years of battleroom competitions condensed into 2 battles, the second demonstrating abilities of a well-oiled machine that doesn't make any sense considering half the competitors had never set foot in an actual battle.

    In all, it just felt completely rushed, and void of depth. The battleroom sequences were awkward at best,. The Bonzo-Ender confrontation felt completely weird, and the majority of inter-character relationships were cardboard cutouts as plot devices.

    I understand that a majority of things are lost in translation when brought to the screen, but there ARE adaptations that were well done (LotR, Interview with the Vampire, and even Hunger Games).

    After waiting 17 years for this to come to life, it left a lot to be desired for. Those who enjoy action sci-fi, and not looking for a deeper meaning will enjoy the flick. But, anyone who is intimately familiar with the book and are looking for any resemblance beyond sequence of events and a couple peppered in characters will likely leave the theater feeling disappointed.
    Full Review »
  3. Nov 3, 2013
    Overall, Ender's Game is too reliant on special effects to fill the gaps left by mediocre acting and plot holes. It is simply too unconvincing to be a memorable achievement in film. Full Review »