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James Rocchi’s “Ender’s Game” Is Passionate but Lacks Depth

In response to James Rocchi’s 814‑word review of Ender’s Game on Cinephiled

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One can tell that James Rocchi had a lot on his mind while writing “Review: Ender’s Game,” however his social and political concerns distract him from producing a substantial critique. The critic raises excellent points about American society, but his analysis of the actual film is quite generic and borderline whiny.

Rocchi’s Ender’s Game is an entertaining read, but Rocchi resorts to simple analysis which is apparently the only way to go when you believe a film is simple. It’s disturbing to see critics back off from producing a full critique every time they don’t enjoy a film, and Rocchi is yet another critic that serves up the basics without expanding.

Rocchi begins with an intriguing and powerful statement on the flaws of the film, but ultimately it only leads to timing issues. The review connoisseur will certainly scoff at the critic as he appeared to be ready to deliver a proper takedown, but then just skims over themes without getting into specifics.

The lead performance of Asa Butterfield is noted as being “fine” and he is able to “convey a sense of who he’s going to be.” The supporting cast is reduced to one-word attributes, which is a lazy way to take a shot at the film. Sci-Fi nerds will surely weep from disappointment.

The entirety of the work is mean-spirited, and Rocchi refuses to do anything other than pout about the specifics of movie war and timing. The opinion is not the problem, it’s the complete lack of depth to the review. The critic closes out the work with a passionate paragraph about real-life war, but everything in the piece comes across as finger pointing never backed up with legitimate analysis.    

Quality of Writing Quality of Argument Spoiler Avoidance Presentation