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Mixed or average reviews - based on 39 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 464 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , ,
  • Summary: The Earth was ravaged twice by the Buggers, an alien race seemingly determined to destroy humanity. Seventy years later, the people of Earth remain banded together to prevent our own annihilation from this technologically superior alien species. Ender Wiggan, a boy of only six, may becomeThe Earth was ravaged twice by the Buggers, an alien race seemingly determined to destroy humanity. Seventy years later, the people of Earth remain banded together to prevent our own annihilation from this technologically superior alien species. Ender Wiggan, a boy of only six, may become the savior of the human race. He is separated from his beloved sister and brought to battle school in deep space. He will be tested and honed into an empathetic killer who despises himself as he learns to fight in hopes of saving Earth and his family. Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 39
  2. Negative: 5 out of 39
  1. Reviewed by: Matt Mueller
    Oct 24, 2013
    80
    Like its hero, Ender’s Game relies on brains more than brute force. An absorbing portrait of Lord Of The Flies-style morality housed in imaginative sci-fi casing.
  2. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    Oct 31, 2013
    75
    Ender’s Game is more than a parable about bullying, or a disquisition on the concept of the “just war.” It’s also a rousing action film, especially in Imax.
  3. Reviewed by: Peter Debruge
    Oct 25, 2013
    70
    An impressive, thought-provoking astro-adventure that benefits from the biggest screen available.
  4. Reviewed by: Tom Huddleston
    Oct 22, 2013
    60
    It falters once the actual war begins: Ben Kingsley shows up as a Maori warrior with the weirdest imaginable accent, the final battle is uninvolving, and there’s an unconvincing upbeat coda. Ender’s Game ends up being fitfully engaging and endearingly odd.
  5. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Nov 2, 2013
    50
    I can understand wanting to skip Ender’s Game as a matter of moral principle, but you can also feel free to blow it off just because it’s not that good.
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Keough
    Oct 31, 2013
    50
    It comes down to this: Which is more important, the innocence of a child or the survival of the species? And if the race survives, will it just become like the enemy aliens that must be destroyed to do so?
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Oct 31, 2013
    0
    Ender’s Game, the book, may have a special place in pop-lit. The movie, however, is as special as a migraine.

See all 39 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 37 out of 170
  1. Nov 1, 2013
    10
    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 meritsGo 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. Expand
  2. Nov 2, 2013
    10
    Outstanding! As a fan of the classic novel I was skeptical a film could adequately capture all the intensity, thrill and layers of nuancedOutstanding! As a fan of the classic novel I was skeptical a film could adequately capture all the intensity, thrill and layers of nuanced psychological twists- But Director Gavin Hood was able to deliver. This movie has plenty to offer adults, kids, families and the tried and true sci-fi nerds who fell in love with the book. Loved it so much I saw it twice! Expand
  3. Nov 2, 2013
    9
    A spectacular and true to the book rendition of Orson Scott Card's masterwork of the same name. Asa Butterfield delivers a masterfulA spectacular and true to the book rendition of Orson Scott Card's masterwork of the same name. Asa Butterfield delivers a masterful performance as the eponymous Ender, capturing the intensity and moral complexity of a boy genius who is called upon to save his world despite his reluctance and uncertainty in what he is being asked to do. CGI enables Director Gavin to replicate Card's universe it is only in the depiction of the Battle Room that the strategy and tactics of Ender's genius are not fully realized. In addition, one could have hoped that Bean could have been a more fully realized character and a little less made of Petra in a foredoomed effort to interest and placate the distaff members of moviedom. Expand
  4. Nov 3, 2013
    7
    Not being a huge sci-fi fan of books or movies, which is quite contradictory when one considers I love astronomy and the wonders of theNot being a huge sci-fi fan of books or movies, which is quite contradictory when one considers I love astronomy and the wonders of the universe, although it's a strict layman's understanding, with no real math capabilities to study in depth the cosmos like real astronomers do. I just love to wonder about the infinite space and universe, or universes, and revel in its beauty and mystery. That said, "Ender's Game" is one of the better sci-fi movies I've seen in a while. Not a mind blower, but much better than "Gravity", which isn't saying a whole lot.
    I had begun to read this book years ago and lost interest because I found Orson Scott Card's prose boring. The movie is not of that. Capably acted by all the cast, including Harrison Ford and Ben Kingsley, while this is not exactly Star Wars material, I found the story line interesting and the special effects were very impressive.
    Special effects doth not a great movie make for most of us, but they do spark the imagination when done properly, allowing us to overlook the currently scientifically and physically impossible tasks of traveling at light or warp speed, much less barely tolerate the speed it takes to escape Earth's gravitational pull at over 17,000 mph, which is a snail's pace cosmically speaking.
    However, they laughed at Jules Verne, who predicted men on the moon and correctly calculated the speed needed to leave Earth, and H.G. Wells and Ray Bradbury imagined fictional worlds and situations that are closer than ever to realization. I am a firm believer that if we can imagine it, one day we'll do it.
    But getting down to brass tacks, "Ender's Game" is a movie that allows a certain amount of humanity in, some good, some terrible. The end is somewhat similar to "District 12", and we are reminded once again of our tendency to attack rather than understand or tolerate. It is that lesson I left the theater with. Fans of the book and genre will be more impressed, but a 7 from myself is quite the compliment.
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  5. Nov 7, 2013
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I loved the book and of course knew the movie would be drastically different. However, in my humble opinion, they missed a lot of what made the book great. Character development for Peter and Valentine and their relationship with Ender was very light and those characters are crucial to understanding why Ender is perfect. The personas that Peter and Valentine take on in the online world were not even touched on. The plot felt rushed. The dynamics of the world were not well established... I feel like if you didn't read the book, you would be COMPLETELY lost.

    Which takes me to my next point... it seemed like they were trying to please both a core and mass audience and in doing so, achieved neither.

    With my griping out of the way, the movie did have its merits. Absolutely visually stunning space looks beautiful. Ender and Graff were well portrayed. The action scenes were great. And the battles at Battle School, which were tough for me to visualize while reading, were executed very well.

    All that together makes for a pretty average movie. Nothing to look twice at, but maybe worth seeing if you read the book.
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  6. Apr 30, 2015
    4
    Ender's game is directed by Gavin Hood and stars Asa Butterfield, Harrison Ford, and Ben Kingsley. This movie is based on the book, Ender'sEnder's game is directed by Gavin Hood and stars Asa Butterfield, Harrison Ford, and Ben Kingsley. This movie is based on the book, Ender's Game. The plot involves a young boy named Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield) who is asked to participate in a Battle School to train him for the real enemies, which are called the Buggers. I personally disliked this film because of it's awful fast-pacing and it's sub-par acting, and the fact that the ending did not make any sense what-so-ever. I am the kind of person who looks deeper into the logic of movies, so if you are the kind of person who can shut their brain off and watch a movie, then you will probably enjoy Ender's Game. By itself, Enders game is an "eh" movie but as a movie adaptation to a book it is just horrible. 4/10 Expand
  7. May 22, 2014
    0
    The vast majority of fans of the book are well into their 30s by now, but for some reason they decided to make this film for teens. What aThe vast majority of fans of the book are well into their 30s by now, but for some reason they decided to make this film for teens. What a pile of crap. This film has the emotional subtly of being hit over the head with a brick, and lacks all of the honesty of the book. Plus they cut out a huge part of the book. Why did they do all of this??? For the same reason they do everything... Money!!! So despite the fact that they made a pile of crap they got a lot of money for their pile of crap so they are happy. As for us adult viewers, who were fans of the book, and require some depth to our stories and characters, we are just **** out of luck. Glad I didn't pay to watch it in theaters. They didn't get a dime from me! Expand

See all 170 User Reviews

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