It’s safe to say that one of the higher profile collaborations we saw between director Peter Berg and actor Taylor Kitsch wasn’t exactly a rousing success. While the two found success with Friday Night Lights and Lone Survivor, the 2012 flop Battleship was a film which proved that not only was a movie based on the board game a bad idea, it was a far worse idea than any of us could have anticipated. Neither audiences nor critics were impressed by Berg’s Transformers wannabe — and has there ever been a more depressing descriptor? But as it happens, they’ve joined forces again for a live-action Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare trailer that’s dripping with sci-fi trappings and loads more fun than anything in Battleship. (A low bar, granted, but still.) Check it out.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare takes a best-selling franchise that’s explored most of the major conflicts of the 20th century and fast-forwards the action to 2054, when soldiers are packing all sorts of bleeding-edge tech that’s only in its theoretical or early stages at this point, from powered exoskeletons to hoverbikes to swarms of killer drones. It does a pretty stellar job demonstrating how much fun the creaky Call of Duty template could become with the addition of abilities like leaping hundreds of feet through the air and then punching a guy through a wall. Of course, that sounds a lot like Titanfall, and that has the added appeal of getting to pilot giant mech suits around the battlefield.
The Call of Duty games have a history of enlisting well-known actors for voice roles, including Kiefer Sutherland, Gary Oldman, Ed Harris, and more. For Advanced Warfare they’ve got not only the voice but the likeness and performance of Kevin Spacey, who plays the head of a powerful private military corporation called Atlas that has “effectively become a superpower for hire.” Players take on the role of an Atlas soldier tasked with “restoring order.” A phrase that may or may not sound more ominous than they intended. Then again, with Kevin Spacey involved, I’m guessing the ominous is always intended.
I don’t know if we’ll ever get a full Call of Duty movie or not, but this live-action teaser serves as a pretty solid argument for setting it in the Advanced Warfare era — and with the related box of toys — should it ever happen. Unless they don’t get around to it until 2054, in which case they’ll have to prognosticate ahead another 50 years or so and call it More Advanced Combat.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is now available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC.