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

User Score
6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 385 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 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
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: Joe Williams
    Nov 2, 2013
    50
    Ender’s Game is a blandly sanitized spectacle.
  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. Positive: 91 out of 147
  2. Negative: 30 out of 147
  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 merits this is a fantastic sci fi movie that I hope will do well enough for them to merit a sequel. Expand
  2. Dec 10, 2013
    10
    In being an avid fan of the Enderverse series and having been looking forward to the possibility of this movie for years, I must say, this was well worth the wait. Obviously, no movie adaptation can encompass the depth and volume of a novel, but Hood's media conversion does so elegantly and faithfully. The movie stays true to the narrative and storyline of the novel and does so in such a way that chooses all of the right moments and dialogue that add up to make a very entertaining experience.

    Overall, the acting, character portrayals, cinematography, CGI, score, and pace of the movie was high quality. This movie is worth seeing, especially if you are a fan of Sci-Fi, whether you've read the books or not. As a last note, I also got a good deal of Tron: Legacy vibes from the film, which to me, is a great thing!
    Expand
  3. Nov 3, 2013
    9
    I went into the theater feeling very nervous and afraid that it would be bad, since I'd been reading a lot of reviews and quite a lot of them only gave it an average score (or even bad). But I forgot my fear even after only a few minutes into it. It was so good, almost as great as I expected it would be, and it certainly deserves better than the so-so rating people are giving it. Yes, the pacing is probably too fast, and some moments felt cheesy, but apart from that, I really couldn't find any other flaw. More time would certainly help the character development and build up our emotions for the big climax, but I think Asa Butterfield performed so well that it really didn't matter that much. He was the perfect Ender--both vulnerable and violent, sympathetic and scary. He was so good in the climax, and so were the movie makers--the climax and the twist were handled VERY, VERY WELL I couldn't stop crying at that part. But then again, maybe that's because I've read the book, so I knew exactly what Ender was feeling--I had already had the "empathy link" that allowed me to enjoy the movie emotionally, and I had also understood all the logic behind the story, while non-book readers might need that extra screen time and exposition to develop those. Maybe due to the break-neck pacing some non-book readers (and even some book readers) wouldn't really get the morality, the theme about empathy and humanity, and Ender's fear in all those, but really, it was all there in the movie for you to discover and digest. All in all, it was excellent movie, and more than that, it was an excellent adaptation. It was truly satisfying and definitely worth the wait. Tell everyone to watch it! Expand
  4. Nov 17, 2013
    7
    According to Orson Scott Card's "Ender's Game," the story is about a young boy enters a big tournament in outer space. In this version, Gavin Hood (Tsotsi and X-Men Origins: Wolverine) have created his latest film about a brave young boy who enters a space military academy to defeat the alien colony in the galaxy. Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield) is the chosen one who uses his game techniques to defeat the aliens known as "The Buggers" and he was lead by Colonel Graff (Harrison Ford) who wants Ender to join the space military, so he can defeat the alien warship. In the space military, Ender is training at the huge battle room with his young crew and I would say that how spectacular where the boy was learned in space military in the 3D experience. Ender uses his skills to face those aliens in a big arena of space war and the movie takes a journey where we can see a boy can fight those aliens with his brave ability with emotions, flashbacks, and strong story. Ender's Game is a decent science fiction movie with big entertainment for young teens and children who have read by Mr. Scott Card's novel. The movie has some good acting including Butterfield and Ford, it has some spectacular effects where you can see on 3D, and clever story about a gifted boy can defeat those space invaders in outer space. It reminds me of playing a video game of Wing Commander III by 3DO in 90's. Expand
  5. Nov 1, 2013
    5
    Weak attempt to be Sci-Fi Harry Potter... The book has a loyal following but the film fails to really engage. Trying to cram everything into 120 minutes and make you care just doesn't work. Expand
  6. Nov 10, 2013
    4
    Movie tries to be as close as possible to the book, and fails. Book is about psychology, character development, and tactics, which does not translate well to an action movie, especially if there's a lot of it. And without reading the book first, I doubt you'd understand half of what's going on there. Expand
  7. Feb 15, 2014
    0
    I am a huge fan of the book. This movie by itself might get an alright score from me but since this is based on a good and deep book this movie must be judged more harshly. This movie rushes through key points in the books and skips most important moments. The movie fails completely to show the audience the emotions and thoughts of characters that make the book so amazing. The movie also ignores Enders slow descent into madness and doesn't show the hardships endured by nearly every character. They would've been better off just calling this an entirely different movie. This movie is horrible when put beside the book, I've never wrote a review but this movie was so bad and disgraced the book so much i had to immediately write this review. Expand

See all 147 User Reviews

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