• Mike Burdge

Starship Troopers: Ideals, Intensity and Irony


Starship Troopers, (a film I love), just may be one of the most underrated and misunderstood films of all time, (and I love that, too). There, I said it.

This isn't really that crazy of an opinion these days. Although the super-violent 1997 space-action flick barely made its money back – $120 million from a $100 million budget – and was panned by critics all around (I can't even quote Roger Ebert's views on the film; it's too embarrassing for too many reasons from too many points of view), the film was finally understood after, well, 9/11. There's also a lot of Vietnam in there for sure. How the movie decides to present both its story and themes through subtlety and commitment to satire can be confusing, if not downright unnoticeable. The ideals and motivations of the world and its characters are presented in such an overaggressive way that it’s enough to make the audience commit in one of two ways: 1) either this is an insanely right-wing, fascist, pro-genocide work of propaganda wrapped up into a summer alien invasion-action movie, or 2) this is a humorous denouncement of overt militarism and how our society is moving towards a culture that has left behind any lessons we may have learned from our past, instead deciding to champion violence and victory over kindness and understanding. And, ho-boy does that sound familiar, am I right?