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#1 Sep 15 2013 at 4:59 PM Rating: Good
No thread about this?



I just saw a trailer for the 1st time for it, on the movie Now You See Me (a good movie itself).
If there is a thread, I didn't see it (went back to page 3 :o )
But yea! Woo! The Ender's series turned out to be a book series I really enjoyed in the end.
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#2 Sep 15 2013 at 5:20 PM Rating: Good
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No one wanted to post it here because of "No Homo" Orson Scott Card.
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#3 Sep 15 2013 at 6:07 PM Rating: Good
ah.
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#4 Sep 15 2013 at 6:21 PM Rating: Good
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Shaowstrike the Shady wrote:
No one wanted to post it here because of "No Homo" Orson Scott Card.


Pretty much.

Though to this day I still fail to understand how someone like Card could write a character like Ender. Makes no sense to me.

Anyone, for reasons that will surprise no one, I have a general boycott on all things with the capability of bringing Card income.
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#5 Sep 15 2013 at 10:09 PM Rating: Decent
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Never read the book, and know next to nothing about the author's opinions on things. I saw the first preview a few months ago when I was at the theater for something or other, and I wasn't terribly impressed by what I saw.
#6 Sep 15 2013 at 10:11 PM Rating: Good
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The book was pretty much "The Last Starfighter", but the order of events were re-arranged.
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#7 Sep 15 2013 at 10:41 PM Rating: Excellent
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That preview looks like a generic sci-fi alien movie and has almost no resemblance to the novel. If they didn't show the title, I'm not certain I would have guessed what novel it was adapted from.
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#8 Sep 15 2013 at 11:05 PM Rating: Excellent
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They were going to show more of the game in the preview, but they couldn't, because the enemy gate was down!
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#9 Sep 16 2013 at 7:27 AM Rating: Good
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idiggory wrote:
I have a general boycott on all things with the capability of bringing Card income.
I do the same with Uwe Boll.
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#10 Sep 16 2013 at 7:34 AM Rating: Good
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idiggory wrote:
Though to this day I still fail to understand how someone like Card could write a character like Ender. Makes no sense to me.
Perhaps he wasn't quite so vehement in his beliefs when he wrote Ender's Game.
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#11 Sep 16 2013 at 7:35 AM Rating: Excellent
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So I'm guessing that they're ignoring the "twist" in favor of showing lots of spaceships and explosions. I suppose 120 minutes of zero gravity laser-tag and kids playing Space Invaders wasn't considered Hollywood material.

Suppose Valentine and Whats-his-name will still take over the world's government via Usenet?
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#12 Sep 16 2013 at 7:56 AM Rating: Good
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Turin wrote:
Never read the book, and know next to nothing about the author's opinions on things. I saw the first preview a few months ago when I was at the theater for something or other, and I wasn't terribly impressed by what I saw.


The book itself is phenomenal. It's essentially a meditation on the potential of empathy, both to destroy and create. I have yet to read any of the other books in the universe (Ender's Game was the first, afaik).

Spoilering stuff from here on out because you actually should read it. Just buy it used or pirate it/borrow it. Smiley: nod

Jophiel wrote:
That preview looks like a generic sci-fi alien movie and has almost no resemblance to the novel. If they didn't show the title, I'm not certain I would have guessed what novel it was adapted from.


My exact reaction to it. Went to see Pacific Rim, and the trailer was playing, and all I could think was **** it, why do we never get anything but super generic sci-fi movies?" and then I realized it was for Ender's Game and I wasn't impressed.

I mean, there isn't actually any space combat in the book. That's part of the point. Ender never experiences the horrors of war, but feels them regardless. They were more than blips on a screen to him.

But the reveal that those blips were actually real units was an important one. At least they were to me - I read the book knowing there was a long series of books, and I didn't expect the war to be summed up in the first one.


Spoonless wrote:
idiggory wrote:
Though to this day I still fail to understand how someone like Card could write a character like Ender. Makes no sense to me.
Perhaps he wasn't quite so vehement in his beliefs when he wrote Ender's Game.


I bet that was the case. I also think that it's fair to note that Ender is the one who suffers the most in the book. His brother is the one who ends up with all the power and glory, at the end of the day. But that all happens off-screen, mostly.

But I still have difficulty understanding how someone who could write a character like Ender, from Ender's POV, and have such a low capacity for the character traits that define him.
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#13 Sep 16 2013 at 8:36 AM Rating: Good
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Harrison Ford and Ben Kingsley - they must be suffering from Old Guy Dimming Spotlight Disorder.

I'm willing to give the movie a chance despite Cards willingness to hate. Some of his books were so good - others pure trash. Maybe he has a personality disorder??

For the most part though child actors usually suck in a leading roll.

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#14 Sep 16 2013 at 8:51 AM Rating: Good
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From watching the trailer, they seem to have seriously downplayed the deception part of the plot. Granted, trailers are misleading, but I'm really worried this is going to be changed from a story where Ender is carefully molded through peer pressure to one where he is molded by The Quest™.
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#15 Sep 16 2013 at 8:52 AM Rating: Good
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Elinda wrote:
For the most part though child actors usually suck in a leading roll.
Well, the "kids" in the movie are much older than in the book.
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#16 Sep 16 2013 at 8:54 AM Rating: Good
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idiggory wrote:
[...] he is molded by The Quest™.
Screenshot
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#17 Sep 16 2013 at 9:07 AM Rating: Good
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Spoonless wrote:
idiggory wrote:
[...] he is molded by The Quest™.
Screenshot


Good try, but that's Bloodsport.
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#18 Sep 16 2013 at 9:08 AM Rating: Good
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#19 Sep 16 2013 at 9:17 AM Rating: Good
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DM;JCVD


Screenshot
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#20 Sep 16 2013 at 9:20 AM Rating: Good
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#21 Sep 16 2013 at 9:24 AM Rating: Good
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Screenshot
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#22 Sep 16 2013 at 9:25 AM Rating: Good
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#23 Sep 16 2013 at 9:28 AM Rating: Good
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#24 Sep 16 2013 at 9:35 AM Rating: Good
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This is the best Ender's Game thread.
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#25 Sep 16 2013 at 9:42 AM Rating: Good
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I'd totally watch this if these gifs were part of the movie.
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#26 Sep 16 2013 at 10:02 AM Rating: Good
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No explanation or context, though, just a screen wipe into one of the GIFs at random points throughout.
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#27 Sep 16 2013 at 10:18 AM Rating: Good
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Van Damme aside, anyone privy to last Saturday's fight - Mayweather vs Alvarez?

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#28 Sep 16 2013 at 10:21 AM Rating: Good
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Van Damme aside, anyone privy to last Saturday's fight - Mayweather vs Alvarez?
Mayweather by decision.
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#29 Sep 16 2013 at 10:50 AM Rating: Good
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Yeah, I heard that much. I haven't talked with anyone who actually saw the fight though. My curiosity will hold til next weekend.
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#30 Sep 16 2013 at 3:49 PM Rating: Good
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I read the book about a month ago, and was pleasantly surprised. As others have said here though, the trailer makes it seem like it may not be a completely faithful adaptation. Which normally I don't care as much about, but it's kinda the whole point of the book that they don't show any of the actual ships fighting.
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#31 Sep 16 2013 at 3:55 PM Rating: Good
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I watched the trailer and was left wonder what was with all the fighting and explosions? Aside from some laser tag and a couple of fist fights the book had no action at all. Certainly no giant explosion filled space battles.
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#32 Sep 16 2013 at 4:01 PM Rating: Good
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The goal of a trailer is to be a faithful sampling of the movie experience right?
#33 Sep 16 2013 at 4:14 PM Rating: Excellent
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The goal of a trailer is to give away the best parts of the movie.
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#34 Sep 16 2013 at 5:03 PM Rating: Excellent
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The goal of a trailer is to be a faithful sampling of the movie experience right?

The goal of the trailer is to make me want to see the movie. Which this one had pretty much the opposite effect. Your mileage may vary.
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#35 Sep 16 2013 at 6:03 PM Rating: Good
lol@gifs.

I'm going to assume what Ender sees he think is part of the training, and not actual combat were he wipes out fleets and then almost and entire race of species.
Or Hollywood is going for flashy. Meh. I enjoyed the books, I'll go see the film.
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#36 Sep 16 2013 at 6:04 PM Rating: Decent
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Vataro wrote:
I read the book about a month ago, and was pleasantly surprised. As others have said here though, the trailer makes it seem like it may not be a completely faithful adaptation. Which normally I don't care as much about, but it's kinda the whole point of the book that they don't show any of the actual ships fighting.


Not really. At least, I don't see it as a significant departure at all. In the book, the space battles were represented as holographic images transmitted back to the base (or displayed there as recordings from the earlier battles that took place near Earth). It's only a stylistic difference to show the ship battles themselves in a more graphic manner IMO. Doesn't detract from the story at all. We can just assume that they have a better view of the "virtual" battles going on, which is honestly more in keeping with computer technology advancing significantly since Card wrote the book. Think about how much more detail online games have today versus back in the early 80s. Now imagine how much more advanced they would be a hundred years or so in the future. It's not unreasonable to assume they'd be looking at a battle that would look completely real rather than one that just represented ships as blips on a screen.

I'm more interested in seeing how well they portray the development/manipulation of Ender along the way. I'm sure they'll have to leave some parts out (which unfortunately likely means the whole alien connection bit), but I've always felt that the asides at the beginning of each chapter where the various leaders more or less explain why they're doing these horrible things to him is key to understanding the book itself. Leave that out and it's just a basic "hero kid saves day" story. With it in place, it brings up the philosophical questions about how far is too far, and at what point do the ends justify the means.

I'm also interested to see how much of the siblings stuff they put in. It's not really necessary for the main story, but it does add to the "questioning what/why you're doing something" theme of the book. It's always hard to put in those extra details from a book into a film though, doubly so in this case since if you don't do it right and all the way, you're basically just wasting screen time. I have a feeling they'll gloss over that aspect of it as well.
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#37 Sep 16 2013 at 8:06 PM Rating: Good
Oh **** are we back on topic now? That was sudden.
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#38 Sep 17 2013 at 8:14 AM Rating: Good
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The fact that all Ender ever sees are holographic projections that are part of a game is kind of the point. Ender never sees any of the combat. And Ender is the narrator, so he never sees it. It isn't even revealed that there was combat until after the fact.

Seeing a massive space battle is definitely a big deviation from that.
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#39 Sep 17 2013 at 9:00 AM Rating: Excellent
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Gbaji was saying that Ender is playing the game and the game just looks super-duper realistic so we get to see "space battles" occurring that are supposedly not occurring, except that they are. 3D holographic Starcraft and all that rather than what we think of as a military tactics simulator with dots and triangles and stuff.

The major issue I see with that (and with the preview) is that it sets your mind into thinking of it as an actual battle and not a "game". Which again sort of blows the whole point of the movie if you spend the whole time viewing it as actual battles. Maybe they'll spend significant time trying to impress "This isn't real!" while wanting to show off nifty space battle effects. I think that pulling back on that would make for a more faithful adaptation but, you know, Hollywood and all that.

Edited, Sep 17th 2013 10:02am by Jophiel
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#40 Sep 17 2013 at 11:21 AM Rating: Good
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I see Gbaji's point, and there's some validity to it, but overall I agree with Joph's comment. At some point it's too realistic and detracts from what is supposed to be a simulation. At least that's how I feel.
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#41 Sep 17 2013 at 12:35 PM Rating: Good
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Vataro wrote:
I see Gbaji's point, and there's some validity to it, but overall I agree with Joph's comment. At some point it's too realistic and detracts from what is supposed to be a simulation. At least that's how I feel.


Well, modern day simulation games are getting very realistic. Maybe they are trying to play on that? Doesn't have to be 1980's Wargames style simulations anymore.

It's an anti-video game propaganda film in disguise! Show them as realistic and then have the character assume they are just games...
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#42 Sep 17 2013 at 2:24 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
Gbaji was saying that Ender is playing the game and the game just looks super-duper realistic so we get to see "space battles" occurring that are supposedly not occurring, except that they are. 3D holographic Starcraft and all that rather than what we think of as a military tactics simulator with dots and triangles and stuff.


Correct.

Quote:
The major issue I see with that (and with the preview) is that it sets your mind into thinking of it as an actual battle and not a "game". Which again sort of blows the whole point of the movie if you spend the whole time viewing it as actual battles. Maybe they'll spend significant time trying to impress "This isn't real!" while wanting to show off nifty space battle effects. I think that pulling back on that would make for a more faithful adaptation but, you know, Hollywood and all that.


I don't see why this is a problem. The only difference between what's portrayed in the film (previews) and in the book is the level of detail of the holographic images he's working with. From an objective point of view, there's no more reason to assume that these images must be portraying "real battles" anymore than the blips on a screen that were portrayed in the book. It will work in the film just as it worked in the book. Because, as you just said, he is told it's just another simulated war game. And just as in the book, the film will have contained a long series of such things up to that point, allowing the audience to accept it as true.

I expect that for the typical person watching this film who's never read the book, they'll get to that point in the film and think "Oh. Those space battles I saw in the previews were just simulated training", then when the reveal occurs, they'll be like "OMG!". Because that's exactly as it happened in the book. Remember that Ender (and the reader) is never told anything but that Ender is training to be the next generation of leader defending Earth from the assumed third invasion. That's largely why the twist works. It has nothing to do with how much detail the holographic images contain.

Um... And let's be honest. Scenes of kids staring at moving dots on a screen wouldn't make for a very exciting film. So yeah... Hollywood. But I don't think it'll detract from the story one bit (assuming they don't **** it up with too much foreshadowing or something. I never underestimate the ability of Hollywood to dumb things down for the dumbest rock in the theater). It's a tricky set up, but if they do it even mostly right, it'll work. Like I said earlier, my bigger concern is getting the psychological stuff right. That's far far trickier than fooling the average viewer with a plot twist.
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#43 Sep 17 2013 at 2:28 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
Um... And let's be honest. Scenes of kids staring at moving dots on a screen wouldn't make for a very exciting film. So yeah... Hollywood.

To be honest, I don't think the book itself translates well to screen and the necessary liberties to bring it to film will make it not really worth watching.
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Like I said earlier, my bigger concern is getting the psychological stuff right

They already lost that when they aged all the students a decade for film purposes. See above comment.

Edited, Sep 17th 2013 3:29pm by Jophiel
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#44 Sep 17 2013 at 2:44 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
gbaji wrote:
Um... And let's be honest. Scenes of kids staring at moving dots on a screen wouldn't make for a very exciting film. So yeah... Hollywood.

To be honest, I don't think the book itself translates well to screen and the necessary liberties to bring it to film will make it not really worth watching.


Of all the things about that book that might not translate well to screen, IMO the least significant is whether the battles are portrayed as dots on a screen, or in full holographic detail. That's cosmetic at most.


Quote:
Quote:
Like I said earlier, my bigger concern is getting the psychological stuff right

They already lost that when they aged all the students a decade for film purposes. See above comment.


Yeah. But two words: Hunger Games

I agree that there's no way they can impart the kind of impact the training had on Ender given the age restrictions involved, but I do think it's possible to replicate at least the basic theme with an older character. I think it'll end out being less psychopathy and more "teen angst", but that's the nature of the game. Until they're willing to cast a 6 year old boy, and then film him over 4 years in order to get it right (and they can find a 6 year old who can play that role in the first place), we'll kinda have to accept something close. I'd much rather they went with older actors who can at least emote the kind of conflicts and personality issues going on than have the equivalent of "spy kids in space" that you'd get casting age correct actors. So it's the better of two imperfect alternatives, I guess.
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#45 Sep 17 2013 at 3:51 PM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
gbaji wrote:
Um... And let's be honest. Scenes of kids staring at moving dots on a screen wouldn't make for a very exciting film. So yeah... Hollywood.

To be honest, I don't think the book itself translates well to screen and the necessary liberties to bring it to film will make it not really worth watching.
Quote:
Like I said earlier, my bigger concern is getting the psychological stuff right

They already lost that when they aged all the students a decade for film purposes. See above comment.

Edited, Sep 17th 2013 3:29pm by Jophiel


I'll be honest. My biggest issue with the book was that I just couldn't imagine a 6 year old, even one supposedly bred to be a genius or w/e, having some of the thought processes that Ender goes through. So I personally have no problem with aging the characters a little for a theatrical version. I don't think you lose the lack of maturity or highly impressionable / developing characters just by changing them from 6 to 10 or whatever. Even 14-15 I still think would be somewhat reasonable, though somewhat less so. Are they actually portrayed as 16+ in the movie, or were you exaggerating?
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#46 Sep 17 2013 at 4:11 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
Yeah. But two words: Hunger Games

Never read it so I have no opinion.
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Until they're willing to cast a 6 year old boy, and then film him over 4 years in order to get it right (and they can find a 6 year old who can play that role in the first place), we'll kinda have to accept something close.

Which goes back to my "by it's very nature, I don't think it translates well to film" remark. I personally wasn't looking for any film adaptation at all so I understand that they may change stuff but I don't have to "accept" it. Don't take that to mean that I have my fur up over this; I read the book ages ago and thought it was good enough but it's not beloved by me or anything. At the same time, I'm not inclined to see a movie sorta-kinda based on a book I once read.
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Are they actually portrayed as 16+ in the movie, or were you exaggerating?

Asa Butterfield (age 16) plays Ender, Abigail Breslin (age 17) plays Valentine, Jimmy Pinchak (age 17) plays Peter, Hailee Steinfeld (age 17) plays Petra, Moises Arias (age 19) plays Bonzo, etc. They could be playing "young" and that happens all the time but it's obvious that they shelved the "arguably sociopathic treatment of first graders in the name of global security" angle.

Edited, Sep 17th 2013 5:13pm by Jophiel
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#47 Sep 17 2013 at 4:25 PM Rating: Decent
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It's been awhile since I read the book, but I think he initially goes to the school at age 6, but spends several years there. I think he's 9 or 10 when the book ends. So it's more about a progression over time. Part of the psychological aspect is that they take a young boy with the right mindset and intelligence and then subject him to an environment designed to force him to make successively harder choices in order to win. I think you can do that with an older actor portraying a mid teen character, but it's harder to pull off. And they'll never really get the same "molded children" feel that the book had. It'll be more like "take advantage of teens who don't know any better".

It can still work, but wont have quite the same feel or power that the book had.
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#48 Sep 17 2013 at 4:38 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
Asa Butterfield (age 16) plays Ender, Abigail Breslin (age 17) plays Valentine, Jimmy Pinchak (age 17) plays Peter, Hailee Steinfeld (age 17) plays Petra, Moises Arias (age 19) plays Bonzo, etc. They could be playing "young" and that happens all the time but it's obvious that they shelved the "arguably sociopathic treatment of first graders in the name of global security" angle.


Again, it's been awhile since I read the book, but I seem to recall it was a school and had a range of ages. So like a militarized 1-12 boarding school. I don't recall how old the oldest kids were, but I got the impression that they were teens (high school age). Ender was exceptional in that he was even a contributor to the combat games at his age, let alone a leader within a short period of time. Most of the young kids were just fodder who played at the lower levels. Ender gets "advanced" up several levels of play, each level of which covers successively higher age ranges.

Part of the whole deal with him and Bonzo is that Bonzo is much older than Ender and bullys him around. Normally, they don't allow kids Enders age to interact with the older kids, but that's part of the training. They want Ender to always feel out of his element and threatened, so as to reinforce his innate "hit first, hit hard, make your opponent never think about coming after you again" attitude. It's part of the whole background conversation. Just how hard to push him so that he'll learn the tactical skills he'll need, while retaining his tendencies *and* teaching him to ignore arbitrary rules if they get in his way.

And yeah, I absolutely agree that this is harder to pull off if he's older, but depending on how young the character is portrayed as, it can still work. Think smallish high school freshman going against the senior class bully. It still works. You just don't get the full effect of him effectively growing up in this environment rather than being dropped into it already a young teen.
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Bonzo was "older" but like age nine to his six style older. Not voting age.
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You just don't get the full effect of him effectively growing up in this environment rather than being dropped into it already a young teen.

Which was only, you know, largely the entire point of the book.
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#50 Sep 17 2013 at 8:07 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
Bonzo was "older" but like age nine to his six style older. Not voting age.


I'd have to re-read the book to be sure, but I thought that the shower fight occurs right before Ender is "graduated" to command school (after being talked into not quitting). Which happens when he's 10. I always got the impression that Bonzo was more like 15 or 16. At least it was pretty clear that Enders progression was ridiculously fast, skipping multiple years that normal students would take to advance to the top level (commanding his own army). So if he was 10 when he leaves, then the normal top tier students would have to be mid teens at least. I don't recall if Card ever specifically stated the ages though. Been awhile since I read the book.

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You just don't get the full effect of him effectively growing up in this environment rather than being dropped into it already a young teen.

Which was only, you know, largely the entire point of the book.


But it's a point that can still be made with an older character. It's just not as powerful. What makes the manipulation of Ender so shocking is that it starts at such an early age. It's also what fueled quite a bit of criticism of the original work though. I think you can make the point of military indoctrination without having the subject be quite so young and still have it work. And if you can avoid offending people in the process, it'll probably result in a more successful film. It's a compromise, but I'd rather they up the age and keep the indoctrination angle in, then keep the young age and drop the indoctrination stuff.

If they up the age *and* drop the indoctrination/manipulation parts, that would be more of a problem for me. Cause yeah, then you'd have dropped what is more or less the theme of the book from the story and are left with just a "fight the bad guys with cool special effects" film.
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#51 Sep 17 2013 at 10:08 PM Rating: Excellent
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gbaji wrote:
But it's a point that can still be made with an older character. It's just not as powerful.

Yes, much much less effectively. The question of "Did we do right to do this to this child (and all the previous children) in order to possibly save the world?" loses a bit of zing when said kids are a year or two away from legally being drafted in our day and age.

If you want to say it works for you, I obviously can't say that it doesn't. For me, it doesn't hold much impact at all.

And you're giving the film way too much credit if you think the older kids are some sort of compromise to discuss military indoctrination. They used older actors because (A) they're easier to deal with than young children and (B) teens have more money to spend at the movies than first graders.

Edited, Sep 17th 2013 11:14pm by Jophiel
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Belkira wrote:
Wow. Regular ol' Joph fan club in here.
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