Saw Ender's Game today. Yes, I'm well aware of the Orson Scott Card controversy swirling around the 'net right now. Let's ignore that and talk about the film.
It was pretty good. Asa Butterfield is perfect as Ender. He's so tiny. Not a lot of time is spent with his siblings Valentine and Peter, for which I was thankful. They were my least favorite parts of the book itself. Though Peter's real monstrosity isn't conveyed in a way that makes Ender's whinging on about how he's "just like Peter" hit home the way it does in the book.
Harrison Ford as Graff is fine. To be honest, he's given a bit too much screen time. And his Graff is not nearly as cold and hard on Ender as he is in the book. Ender's entire training isn't nearly as solitary as it is in the book either. Perhaps it was the pacing that didn't allow for those periods of bleak solitude, feeling like he didn't have a friend in the world.
Kingsley as Rackham is great. But when is Kingsley not great? The supporting actors who play Ender's fellow trainees are all well done, particularly Hailee Steinfeld (Petra), Aramis Knight (Bean), Suraj Partha (Alai), and Nonso Anozie (Sgt. Dap). Moises Arias also puts in a great performance as the hateful Bonzo Madrid.
All of the action scenes are amazing, particularly the Battle School game scenes. The epic fights with the Bugg... er, Formics are also visually amazing. I do wish they'd spent more time developing the significance of the mind game Ender plays on his tablet in his free time. If they'd spent more time developing that I think the final reveal at the end of the film would have been more moving.
Overall though, the film is visually splendid. It does a competent job with the highlights of the story elements from the book.
Oh, and this is NaNoWriMo day 3! I managed to get 1774 words written today so am now up to 5372 total! Yay!