Ender’s Game – film review

Humanity battles against the planet of the giant ants in Gavin Hood’s film

Hailee Steinfeld and Asa Butterfield in 'Ender's Game'

In Ender’s Game future civilisation is in the power of small kids with agile brains. “We need a Julius Caesar, a Napoleon,” growls Harrison Ford, lord of the cosmic battle school. He picks barely teenaged Ender Wiggins (Asa Butterfield), a gaming prodigy, who will help humanity defeat the enemy planet inhabited by giant ants.

Gavin Hood’s film is as windily solemn as the theme is, or could be, bewitchingly topical. (Not just the ascent of brainy teens, but insects as tomorrow’s odds-on survivor species.) Space battles and supersized bugs apart, the movie is mammoth talk sessions in mammoth sets, written and directed by the man who followed the promising Tsotsi with the ponderous Rendition and X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2016. All rights reserved. You may share using our article tools. Please don't cut articles from FT.com and redistribute by email or post to the web.

More on this topic

Suggestions below based on Film & Television

The Fall, BBC2

Both the acting and the direction take the audience by the scruff of the neck and keep hold