Ender's Game (2013) Script


ENDER: Fifty years ago, an alien force known as the Formics attacked Earth.

Tens of millions died.

It was only through the sacrifice of our greatest commander that we avoided total annihilation.

We've been preparing for them to come back ever since.

The International Fleet decided that the world's smartest children are the planet's best hope.

Raised on war games, their decisions are intuitive, decisive, fearless.

I am one of those recruits.

No, I got him. He's poking his head out.

HYRUM: I've watched through his eyes, I've listened through his ears, and I tell you he's the one.

That's what you said about his brother.

Brother tested out impossible for other reasons.

Nothing to do with his tactical abilities.

I gotcha, I gotcha... RECRUIT: Go around.


He's gonna crush him.

Come on!

You can't do that!

You've got to use what's around you.

No, no, no. I had you all the way through the belt!

You miscalculated your trajectory relative to the incoming asteroid.

Don't lecture me, Wiggin!

You cheated!

It was a good game.



Play again.


- Tomorrow maybe? HYRUM: You see?

He's got a talent for strategy.

His humility could be false.

Part of a strategy to avoid antagonizing an ego-driven opponent.

Which makes him even smarter.

He may be a genius, but we need someone the others will follow. A leader.

He can't win on his own.

HYRUM: Well, let's see how he handles rejection.

MAN: (OVER PA) Andrew Wiggin.

Andrew Ender Wiggin, please report to the Infirmary.

Ender Wiggin, to the infirmary.


Hello, Ender. Hello.

That nasty monitor is coming out today.

Please. Lie face down.

Am I off the program?

Did I do something wrong?

That's not really for me to say.

Lie down.

The sooner we get this done, the sooner you can move on.



This won't hurt a bit.




OFFICER: A-ten-hut!

Forward march!


BOY 1: Where do you think you're going, Wiggin?


Washed out, huh?

Come on! (GRUNTS)

BOY 2: Get him in there! ENDER: You're expecting...

(GRUNTS) Come on!


Come on, cheat.

One on one, for real this time.

No game.

BOY 3: He's got no monitor now.

That's right.

No one watching you now, Wiggin.

One on one?

Then why are your boys holding me?

Let's go. Come on, man.





Stay down...

I'm gonna kill you, cheat. (GRUNTS)



Take it easy, Ender!


You might be thinking of ganging up on me.

But just remember what I do to people who try to hurt me.

ENDER: He said I was cheating.

Said that was why I was off the program, and I kept on kicking him. VALENTINE: It doesn't matter.

Even after he was down.

He'll never bully you again.

All I could think was, "What would Peter do?"

I'm just like him, Val.

No. No, you are nothing like him, Ender.

PETER: Nothing like who?

I thought you had a game?

Rained out.

What's he crying about? I'm not crying.

My monitor's gone.

Now I'm just like you.

You mean that Mom and Dad spent all that money on a third, and now he's off the program too?

Stop it, Peter. He made it farther than either of us.

Hey, dropout.

Remember how to play Formics and Astronauts?

That's it! Where's Mom?

ENDER: No, don't.

I'll play. PETER: Put the mask on.

You can be the bug.

(GASPS) Peter! You're insane!

Stay out of this, Valentine! No! Stop it!

PETER: Alright, bug, you started it, you attack first.

Peter! Let me in!

Come on!


PETER: Come on, fight back!

At last we got one of you alive!

Peter! Stop it!

You know, I could kill you, just like this.


Peter... Please...

I should have been chosen.



CHAMRAJNAGAR: (ON TV) Deep space Intel shows us that the number of enemy ships already deployed is 10 times those we faced during the first invasion.

The Formics are rebuilding and strengthening their fleet.

We must conquer or die.

Turn it off, please, John.

Why? You'd rather not know what's going on in the world?

We must never again bear witness to the slaughter of tens of millions of innocent people, as we did during the Formic invasion.

I'd rather you talk to your son.

Our survival demands total commitment to the destruction of the enemy.

If you want, I'll go away, so you don't have to be embarrassed.

Ender, no one is embarrassed.

I'm a third. I should never have been born.

No. We wanted you, Ender. We just needed permission.


John, please say something.

It's a tough program, Ender.

When they brought me to this country, there was less competition. And still, I didn't make it.

You have nothing to be ashamed of.




Front door. Please state your name.

Colonel Hyrum Graff, Director of Training, International Fleet.

This is my colleague, Major Anderson.

May we?

GWEN: Why'd you keep kicking him?

You'd already won the fight.

Did you enjoy it? No.

Then why? Speak up, son.


Knocking him down was the first fight.

I wanted to win all the next ones too.

So they'd leave me alone.

Ender, you should have asked a grownup for help.

Nonsense. He can fight his own battles.

Colonel, he was obviously being bullied and he defended himself. Son...

I'd like to offer you a place in our program.

But you took away my monitor.

The final step in our evaluation is always to see what happens when the monitor's removed.

And he passed?

He put a child in the hospital.

HYRUM: It's not what he did.

It's why he did it. It was tactical.

A strategy to stop future attacks.

Ender, you don't have to do this.

Ender and I should have a private conversation.

Absolutely not! With all respect, sir, you really can't stop me.

The Formics might have wiped us out the last time, you know.

A brilliant commander is the only thing that saved us.

Mazer Rackham...

Mazer Rackham.

We need minds like yours, Ender.

Young people integrate complex data more easily than adults.

Will the monitor be reinstalled?


You're graduating.

To Battle School.

Privacy rights restored.

If there is a chance that, because of you, the Formics might leave us alone forever,

then I have to ask you to come with me.

It's what I was born for, right?

ENDER: Valentine was too compassionate for Battle School.

My brother Peter washed out because he was too quick to violence.

Colonel Graff said I need to find a balance between those emotions if I were to succeed.



Join the others.

Go on.



You're late. Out of my control.

I'm Ender.


(SCOFFS) What kind of name is that?

What's your name?

Name's Bean.


Grew up on the streets. Not worth a bean.

PILOT: (ON PA) T-minus 10 seconds and counting.


T-minus five seconds and counting.

Four, three, two, one...


ENDER: Wow... BOY 1: Oh...

BOY 2: Oh, my gosh!


I'm gonna be...

A bag! Give him the bag!



ALL: Whoa!



BOY 3: Are you serious, man?

Close the bag!

You all right?


What are you doin', Wiggin?

Nothing, sir.

Something funny?

I asked you a question, Launchie!

Sir, the way you're floating.

Horizontal. I thought that was funny.

Really? Why?

Because in zero gravity there is no right side up.

You may think you're vertical and we may be horizontal.

Is that funny?

ALL: Sir, no, sir!

Yes, it is.

Alai, do you know what he's talkin' about?

Yes, sir. No, you don't.

There's only one kid on this launch with any brains at all so far.

And that's Ender Wiggin.

WOMAN: (OVER PA) All new arrivals follow the yellow lights to your accommodations.

The yellow lights.


Sir, you made them hate me.

I told them you were the best.

We need a Julius Caesar, a Napoleon. We hope that will be you.

Caesar was assassinated by the people he trusted.

And Napoleon lost in the end.

Not before he conquered the known world.

Dismissed. Yes, sir.

He has a complicated response to authority.

He wants to please the overbearing father figure, but resents a lack of reciprocated affection.

His isolation can never be broken.

He must never believe anyone will help him.


Oh, look! It's the smartass.


Thought I'd have to ask to be by the door.




Ender Wiggin.

DAP: Don't freeze your balls, kid.

BERNARD: Attention on deck!

At ease.

Listen up, Launchies!

My name is Sergeant James Dap.

Ask me a legitimate question and I will give you a direct answer.

But if you are looking for a shoulder to cry on, use a pillow!


Do I look like I'm joking, snots?

ALL: Sir, no, sir!


You are to work as a team.

You will all make this bunk room your home.

You will keep your home clean!

There are separate showers for both sexes.

If you're found in an area not designated to your gender, I will personally neuter you!

Am I clear?

ALL: Sir, yes, sir!

Class is in five! Follow the yellow lights!

Yellow, like your cowardly selves!

ALL: Sir, yes, sir!

Welcome to Battle School.

A great responsibility rests upon each of you.

When the enemy first invaded, we were not ready.

Millions of innocent lives were lost.

That must never be allowed to happen again.

We threw everything we had at the invaders.

And in the midst of that decisive battle, a legendary hero emerged.


MAN 1: Eject! Eject!

MAN 2: Break away now! Hammer 3!

Hammer 2, break left!

Bend at left, 7 o'clock.

Hammer 2 is hit! Hammer 2 critical!

MAN 3: Hammer 1 has been hit!




HYRUM: We will never forget what the enemy did.

But we defeated them.

And we will do so again.

Let the courage of Mazer Rackham be your inspiration.

DAP: Wakey, wakey, rise and shine!

Put on your Battle Room suits!

That's the padded one with the helmet and the weapon!

Do not attempt to fire the weapon! Holster it!

Let's move it, Launchies!

You've got 10 minutes!


At ease.

This is the Battle Room.

In here, the floor has been designed to create an Earth-like gravitational pull.

Step through that gate and you're in a zero-G environment.




Get up here.



What do I do now, sir?

Go on in.


All right. Now, push off.








BOY 2: Pull yourself. Whoa!

BOY 3: Grab my hand. No, no! Stop! Stop!

Nicely done!

These guys are still trying to stay up, the way they came in.

Like you said in the shuttle, there is no up or down in space.

But we'll need some way to orientate in here.

Maybe the enemy's gate is "down."

I like it.

Like they're a bug to be crushed under our feet.


What do you think this does?

We'll have to find out.



Well, that's harmless.

What do you think it does when it hits the suit?

Good question.

Shoot me in the leg.

We shoot each other. Same time.

You ready?

In three... (GUNS POWERING UP)

BOTH: two, one...

Whoa! My leg's frozen!

Mine too!

I can't bend my knee.

Shoot me in the chest.

Come on! I'm getting away!


This is amazing!

I can't move at all now.

You're out of your mind.

That's enough.



You're flappin' around like a bunch of drunken ducks!

If you expect to compete with the other teams at this school, you've got a lot to learn.

Sergeant, explain the game.

Yes, sir.

You will train to compete as a team against other teams.

You get one point for a hit to a limb, six for a torso hit, which will immobilize you completely.

But, if either side gets one cadet through their enemy's gate unharmed, that army will win, regardless of points already scored.

Am I clear?

ALL: Sir, yes, sir!

ENDER: "Dear Valentine... So this is Battle School.

"Every day, hours of training.

"And far more homework than we ever had on Earth.

"We train in hand-to-hand combat.

"It keeps us in shape. And aggressive."

And up!

And one! (ALL YELL)


Three! (ALL YELL)

"I feel Peter in me whenever I fight."

Wiggin! - "I wish I didn't.

"We've been studying Formic flight patterns

"for three months now, "but they seem entirely random.

"The truth is we really don't understand our enemy.

"And no one ever adequately explains

"how Mazer Rackham actually defeated the entire fleet.

"The Colonel said he expects me to lead.

"But how? What makes a good leader?

"Everyone here is very different.

"So many, many things to learn.

"Always very little sleep.

"Please write back. I haven 't heard from you.

"How are you? Is Peter behaving?

"Are you getting my emails? I miss you..."

DAP: Attention on deck!

Evening, Launchies. At ease.

I'm pleased to see that most of you are performing well.

As you know, competition for Command School is tough.

Some in the higher ranks have failed to meet our standards, and they're being sent home.

So, I may have the opportunity to promote some of you.

Look to your left.

Look to your right.

These are not your friends.

They are competition.

Keep up the hard work.



Is our email being blocked?

It's just that none of us have received any replies from home.

All communication is being temporarily held back.

Why, sir?

Launchie, it is not your place...

Your families will not understand what we're doing here.

And none of you need the distraction of their replies.

I thought our privacy rights had been restored, sir.

You have the right to privately think whatever you wish, Wiggin.

But there's too much at stake to allow your unfiltered thoughts to leave this facility.

Yes, sir.

Keep it up, snot, and you will never make it to Command School.

I thought it was a legitimate question.


You said if we had a legitimate question...

Drop and give me 20!


You think you're the smartest kid in this school?

No, sir.

You will never be a commander! I will never salute you!

Yes, you will, Sergeant.

Give me 20 more!


Get up!

You do not speak unless spoken to!

Am I clear?

ALL: Sir, yes, sir!

Even if I have a legitimate question?

Shut it, Wiggin!

Now go to sleep!

All of you!

You heard him.

Get some sleep.

We have only three passing scores on the deep space navigation test.

Alai, Bean and Ender.

What happened here? They probably cheated.

Your mother cheated.

That's why you look like a plumber.


You think this is a game?

No, ma'am.

We are preparing for war. Yes, ma'am.

Now, the problem was simple.

How do you slingshot your forces into an attack position on the blind side of this moon using the gravitational pull from this planet?

This is basic rocket science, people.

Ender, get down here and explain.

Ma'am, I think Bean or Alai have a better handle on this than I do.

BEHARI: All right. Alai, come and explain.

ALAI: Ma'am, we need to approach the planet in the direction it's moving.

That way, we benefit from its energy of motion.

(ALL LAUGHING) ls something funny?

Go on, Alai.

ALAI: Of course, there's a moon we have to pass here and that complicates things.

Because the moon's moving in the opposite direction to us, we get a gravitational braking.


Who sent this?

Who sent what, Bernard?

Nothing, ma'am.


If you can't take it, Bernard, don't dish it out.

Yes, ma'am.




AUTOMATED MALE VOICE: Welcome to Games and Recreation.

Cerebral control enabled.



One is poison. One is not.

Choose right and you'll go to Fairyland.

He's found the Mind Game.

Decide or I'll bite your head off.




Bad luck.


Who authorized his access to this?

I did. - Try again, little mouse.

To what end?

Not every battle can be won, Hyrum.

The way he plays a game reveals his state of mind.

If you won't let me assess him one on one, I need some other way to know what he's feeling.

I don't care how he's "feeling."

I want him to toughen up and learn how to lead.

Well, before we make him a leader, let's see how he deals with frustration.


Oh, dear.

What you doin'?

Playing a stupid game.

No matter what I choose, I die. It's rigged.

You're back.

One more time.

Can I watch?


One is poison. One is not.

Choose right and you'll go to Fairyland.

Which you gonna choose? Neither.

Come on little mouse, come on.



ALAI: You killed him.


That's what they want from us.

Follow the rules, you lose. Choose violence, you win.

I've never seen anyone do that.


He's perfect.

SOTO: (ON CONSOLE) Ender Wiggin, you are assigned to Salamander Army, Commander Bonzo Madrid, effective immediately. Orders of Colonel Graft'.

Follow the green lights. Take nothing with you. Go now.

What are they doing?

They're promoting you.




Peace to you.

Throw! BONZO: Come on!

Ball... BONZO: Strike two!

Give me the ball. It hit the wall!

All right. Strike two. Play ball!

You lost, Launchie?

I'm Ender Wiggin.

Supposed to report to Bonzo Madrid.

So you're the replacement?

Ender Wiggin. Petra Arkanian.

Only girl in the Salamander Army.

With more balls than anybody else in this bunkroom.

Ooh! Mama Petra, she talking!


Sir, yes, sir! Ender Wiggin. Reassigned.

I ask for a replacement for O'Reilly and this is what I get?

A useless, skinny, untrained snot!

I'm a quick study. Let me be clear.

I intend to trade you ASAP.

My army is undefeated in the last 21 battles.

I'm on track to make it to Command School within six months.

You can get your training at someone else's expense.

He's all heart. Shut it, Petra!

Easy, Bonzo...

Watch your mouth, Dink.

Here's the deal, snot. When we go into battle, you will not pass through the gates until all my soldiers are through.

Then you will remain just inside the gate with your weapon undrawn and unfired, until the game ends.

So, lam to do nothing?

You are to keep out of the way.

You bunk at the back of the room.

PETRA: You know, Bonzo doesn't like to lose.

He doesn't want an untrained Launchie screwing up his perfect maneuvers.

But the Battle Room is open 24/7.

During free time, I could show you some moves.


You ready?

In three, two, one...




Your turn.

Okay, you can't just keep your thumb on the trigger.

You need half a second to recharge.

At least you don't have any bad habits.

I don't have any good ones either.

I'll give you those.


The further your target, the longer you have to hold the beam.



Even longer.

It's the difference between a tenth and a half-second.

But in battle that's a long time.

Aim, fire, hold, recharge.

That's it.

Learn where your trigger actually fires, and ride the edge.

Now you're gettin' it!

In three, two, one...

Go! Let's see who'll beat me!

CADET 1: Come on, Dink! You can do it!

BONZO: Once. Just beat me once!

FLY: It's over. CADET 1: Come on.

You can do it. CADET 2: You got this!

BONZO: That's five in a row!

Who's the boss? You the boss, Bonzo.

That's right. I'm the boss. Let's go again.

I'm gonna make this six. Ready?

PETRA: You'll get better with practice.

Yeah, let's do it again sometime.


Mmm-hmm. That was fun.

Where were you? Practicing.

In free time.

You don't practice with her.

In fact, you don't practice at all!

May I speak to you privately, sir?

BONZO: Hey...


Hey! Pendejo!

Don't you ever turn your back on me!

If I'm gonna be useful in this toon, I have to practice!

You will do what I tell you!

I will follow all commands you are authorized to give.

But if you take away my free time, I will get you iced.

Are you threatening me, snot?


Listen. I know you want to trade me.

But no one will take me if I don't know anything.

Let me practice. You can get rid of me sooner.

I already gave you an order!

I know. In front of everybody.

And you don't want your soldiers to think that you backed down.

So, for tonight, you can say that you won this argument.

Then tomorrow, you can tell everybody that you changed your mind.

You'll look generous, I'll get to train, we both win. Deal?

You'd better watch your back, Wiggin.

Wake up!

Wake up, mis pendejos!

Battle with Leopard in 10 minutes!

Hey, Wiggin! Yes, sir!

I changed my mind.

Maybe by watching my toons, you'll learn something and I can trade you easier.

Yes, sir. Thank you, sir!

Move! Everybody, let's move!

Salamander is number one!


There's no one like us under the sun


'Cause Salamanders, we're on top


When it comes to winning, we never stop


Salamander halt!

At ease.

What's the play?

Four winds. Toon A, up, B left, C right, D down.

You, Wiggin. You hang back near the gate.

Bonzo, my toon'll be a man short without him.

He knows nothing about our formations, Dink.

He'll only get in the way.

You come out last.

Hang back and observe. We don't need you.

Step aside.

Go, Salamander! Go! Go! Go! Go!

Go, go, go, Salamander! Go! Go!



We gotta break them up.

Fly, you lock with me. Petra rides chariot!

Got it? Got it!

Ready? PETRA: Ready.

In three, two, one...


I'm hit! DINK: Me too!

Keep shooting, Petra!

Body hit her!

Take her out! Go! I'm on it!





What are you doin'? I told you to stay back!


Are you okay?

What are you doing here? Bonzo will kill you.

I can't go back now.

Well, then get in the game. We're losing.

ENDER: They've got half their toon back near their gate.

Put your feet to mine. Redirect me.

Play dead.

Don't draw your weapon till you know you have a shot.

Got it.

In three, two, one...


Smart move, holding Wiggin back.




Where'd you learn all this?

I had a brother.

Had? Have.

Come on. Let's go again.

But use your arms, not your hips.

Officer on deck! A-ten-hut!

I thought I told you not to train with her.

I thought we'd agreed that free time was free, sir.

At ease.


Stop it, Bonzo!


Try making me look like a fool again and I'll kill you.

Are you okay?




What do you want me to do?



How can you be in my game?







Well done. (GAS PS)

You're a killer now.



Nightmares, Launchie?

Keep 'em to yourself.

HYRUM: You said the game would reveal his state of mind, not screw with it!

How did his psycho brother end up in the game?

He's obviously feeling some psychological pressure...

Of course he's feeling pressure, Anderson!

This is a boot camp for kids that are gonna have to face a real enemy!

The game is a thought relationship between the child and the computer.

Together they create stories.

Then change the story!

The stories reflect the child's emotional reality.

I can't change that!

I don't know how these images got into the game.

Erase the game. (SIGHS)



Doin' well.

Very well.

Top test scores in class.

Highest Battle Room ratings.

But you have a habit of upsetting your commander.

I find it hard to respect someone just because they outrank me, sir.

Puts you in a difficult position, doesn't it?

Yes, sir.

You don't like taking orders from Bonzo.

No, sir.

Perhaps you'd prefer to give them yourself?


How would you like to lead your own army?

Dragon Army.

Sir, I've never heard of a Dragon Army.

We discontinued the name four years ago.

No Dragon Army ever won a battle.

Then why not a new name, sir?

Because we already have the uniforms.

And who will be in this army, sir?

Misfits. Like you.

Oddballs who might just be brilliant with the right commander.

Your new quarters.

Your soldiers are being notified now.

You will address them in 15 minutes.

Do you think they'll follow me?


DINK: A-ten-hut!

Officer on deck.

At ease.

Welcome to Dragon Army.

Bunking will be arranged with youngest at the front and veterans at the back.

Ender, every other commander has their seniors closest to the door.

Well, I don't intend to be like every other commander.

What am I doing here, Ender? You don't even like me.

I didn't select this army, Bernard.

But I intend to make it the best in this school.

I think you can help make that happen.

Am I wrong?

No, sir.

You will respect one another.

If anybody has an idea they think is better than mine, I wanna hear it.

I can't be expected to do all the thinking in this army, can I, Bean?

No, sir! Then let's get suited up.

Training starts now! CADETS: Sir, yes, sir!

GWEN: He's pushing them hard.

Might even make something of Bernard.

Command School is pressing for a decision.

Tell them we need more time.

We're out of time.


Tomorrow's game will commence at 0300.

Yes, sir.


Wake up! Wake up!

Battle with Salamander and Leopard! In five!

BEAN: Two armies at once?

The Colonel is changing the rules!

In a battle with the Formics, there will be no rules.


DINK: You all right?

I twisted my ankle.

How bad?

(GROANS) Not good.

Dink, get him to the infirmary.

The rest of you, let's move! Come on! We're late! Come on!

They already opened the gate?


Two armies weren't enough?

They had to block your view too?

What are you doing here?

Colonel said you needed a sub.

Guess he thought your odds were zero with me on the other team.

Bonzo agree to this?

DINK: Colonel Graff's orders. He didn't have a choice.

Dink. Kneel.

What? I have an idea. Kneel.

ENDER: Ready?

In three, two, one! ENEMY CADET 1: Fire now!

Shoot 'em! Fire!




DINK: Whoa, whoa, whoa! Look out!


PETRA: Twelve clear on the wall!

Twelve down, 20 to go.

They could be right behind these forward stars or all the way back at their gate.

Ready? Ready.





Dumbos have a bunch of stars around their gate like a giant donut!

They're just hanging behind 'em.

No one closer? Nah.


Let's see how they handle a formation.

We've never done a formation.

Then they won't expect one.

We still outnumber him.

We should storm him and crush him.

No. We hold our positions. He has to come to us.

We can't lose.

Open fire!


They're drifting upwards!

On my count, row two, push row one!

We're changing direction, 30 degrees!

In three, two, one...


Rear thrusters, row six... Now!

Row five... Now!

ENEMY CADET 3: Come on. Don't let them through.

ENEMY CADET 4: We've gotta break them up!

ENDER: We're almost there!

(GRUNTS) I'm hit! BERNARD: Hold on!

Alai, are you okay?

Yeah! Are we there yet? Almost! Keep close!

Alai can't get hit! BERNARD: We're nearly there!

Keep shooting!



ALAI: We did it! Yeah!


Eat that! Dragon rules! Yes!

ALAI: Who's undefeated now? DRAGON ARMY CADETS: Dragon!

Still think he's not ready?

Don't be smug.


BERNARD: Did you see the look on Bonzo's face?


We're tired of you, Ender.

You know, your father would be proud.

Come to fight a boy in the shower.

With your buddies.

Go watch the door.



You can say you won.

I'll say you taught me a lesson.

No, coward.

Raise your fists.

Come out and fight! Come on!

Come on, fight! Come on! (YELLS)



I could break your arm!








We need help in here!


Everybody knows he started it.


I am so sorry... Major!

We should never have allowed you to be alone...

Not now, Major!

Leave us.

Leave him.


You too, cadet.

He's gonna die, isn't he?

No... No.

Please, don't lie to me.

We're gonna send him home. Back to Earth.

So he can get better.

I want to go with him.

I can't let you go.

You've come so far.

And I wanna talk to my sister.

The Fleet owns you, Ender.

Strategos would never allow it.

Send me home, Colonel, or I will resign.

Don't threaten me, boy.

I am not the enemy.

I'm not so sure.

I won't play this game anymore.

I quit.

What are you gonna do?

Waste millions on a loser?

You wanted to see me.

You can't resign.

You have an obligation to stay here and convince him to do his duty.

My father trained horses.

I've raised yearlings since I was five years old.

I know a thoroughbred when I see one.

We can't lose him.

My God...

You really don't see them as children, do you?

It used to be a war crime to recruit anyone under the age of 15.

When the war is over we can have the luxury of debating the morality of what we do.

When it's over, what will be left of the boy?

What does it matter if there's nothing left at all?

We're using these children to win a war.

And if they come home, it's my job to put them back together again.

Thanks for what you've done.

Where's Ender? Hello, Valentine.

Why are you here? Did something happen?

They won't let me see him.

I need you to take a ride with me.

HYRUM: He's gonna be happy to see you.

Come on... You just want him to re-enlist.

I want him to save lives.

And what about his life?

ENDER: I've been sitting by Bonzo's bed, waiting for him to wake up.

But he may never wake up.

Ender, he attacked first.

And I fought back, just like Peter taught me.

I've had a lot of fights, Val.

I've won because I've always understood the way my enemy thinks.

And when I truly understand them... you also love them.

I think it's impossible to truly understand someone and not love them the way they love themselves.

But in that moment... You beat them.

I destroy them.

I make it impossible for them to ever hurt me again.

Ender, they want me to talk you into going back.

I told them I won't cooperate.

I don't think you're hiding here just because you care about Bonzo.

I think you're hiding because you're afraid.

Afraid you don't know your enemy.

Afraid you might lose.

But what if you're the next Mazer Rackham?

You can't hide here forever.

But if you stay here, if you don't try, then we will all be lost.

I'll miss you.

VALENTINE: I'll miss you, too.

I need to know that you will not block my emails again.

(SPEAKER BEEPS) WOMAN: (OVER PA) Attention, prepare for transporter docking operation.

Initiating final approach.

I thought we were going back to Battle School.

We're not. Where are we going?


Much further.

ENDER: "Dear Valentine...

"I must now travel to our advanced command base

"near the Formics' home planet, "where I'll begin final training.

"If successful, I'll command the entire invasion fleet.

"I wish there was another way, but war seems inevitable.

"Stay safe. Love, Ender."

HYRUM: Not very hospitable, is it?

We took it from the Formics

27 years after Rackham's victory.

Flushed them out of these tunnels like rats from a sewer.

Drove 'em all the way back to their home planet.

How long did they live here? We're not sure.

This was a forward staging post for their invasion of Earth.

We built our base hereto be closer to their home planet, to allow instantaneous communication by Ansible with our attack fleet.

If they're on their home planet, do we have them contained?

For now.

If we have them boxed in, why go to war?

For the same reason that you kept kicking that bully before I recruited you.

The purpose of this war is to prevent all future wars.

Your training begins first thing tomorrow morning.

Sergeant Dap will show you to your quarters.

Yes, sir.

We're still re-seeding the atmosphere.

It's breathable, but thin.

In the event of an evacuation, two breaths every minute from one of these will compensate for lower levels of surface oxygen.

Lights out in five.




Who are you?

Look, this may be amusing to you, but they'll come looking for me.


You wanna fight me? Is that the test?

To see if I'll attack an old man?

Well, I won't.

I'll just sit this one out.


Okay. You win.

Since when do you tell the enemy when he has won?

I surprised you once.

Why didn't you destroy me immediately after?

I thought you were a teacher.

There is no teacher but the enemy.

Only he will tell you where you are weak, where he is strong.

From now on, I am your enemy, got it?

Yes. Good.


During training, I will devise the strategy of your enemy.

Remember, he is stronger than you.

From now on, you are always about to lose.


Do you have a name?

Mazer Rackham.

What? You thought I was dead?

Sir, I've been building models of your planes since I was six years old.

I have a question, sir.

On the vids, they always cut out right after you destroy the one carrier.


Get dressed.


Sir, I've already seen this.

And I wanna know what happens after.

Just watch.



After the explosion cleared, everything was incredibly still.


Their ships just stopped shooting.

And then they started falling out of the sky.

ENDER: Scroll back, please.

To just after you lost your wing man.


ENDER: There.

Play back, please.

You took cover in the cloud.

You couldn't see anything, so you must have been using your HUD.

There. Stop.

You saw something.

What did you see in your HUD? Did you find a pattern?

Very good, Ender.

Thermal imaging from a satellite.

The enemy's in red. What pattern do you see?

ENDER: It seems random.

But it's not.

There's an epicenter, right there.


You took out that one particular ship, and the rest just gave up?


To what animals are the Formics most often compared?

Ants. Which have...

A queen...

Who directs the worker ants.

What she thinks they do.

Without her, they can't think for themselves...

And they die.

You destroyed the queen's ship.

I must have. Yes.

But you can't be certain? No.

And so the Hegemon insisted we keep it classified.

That's why they never show the rest of the battle.

Or my face.

To the world I'm dead.


Your face...

You mean, why is it marked?

My father was a Maori.

Lost him in the war.

Ta Moko is a way to connect to my past.

To my inner skin.

It was a way for me to speak for the dead.

Sir, have you ever seen a queen?

No. No one has.

But if the Formics have rebuilt their fleet, there must be more than one queen.

Yes, of course. On their home planet.

What happened when you attacked here?

Did you find one? No.

Why did they come?


BEAN: Attention!

Officer on deck!

Hey, Bean. Ho, Commander!


We thought you were iced.

We were gonna have to have Dink take over.

That was never gonna happen!

Salaam, Alai.

Salaam, Commander!

Bernard. Good to see you, sir.

At ease.

BEAN: While you've been skinny-dipping the Colonel's been flogging us to death on the simulator!

All right. Take your seats.

In a matter of weeks we may be called on to fight a real battle.

Let's bring your commander up to speed.

Our latest probe images will give you an idea of what's happening on the enemy planet.

Like us, they appear to have a population growth rate that's unsustainable.

For now, they're contained on their planet.

Time is not on our side.

Where are they?

MAZER: High surface temperatures limit their above-ground activity to just a few hours a day.

What's most alarming is the rate at which their military power is expanding.

But they have not yet moved against us.


They're planning to colonize another planet before they breed themselves into extinction.

Our orders are to defeat them before they pose an irreversible threat.

HYRUM: Their very existence is a threat.

Is that clear, Commander?

Clear, sir. Good.

Carry on, Colonel.

We will begin with photo real simulations to best approximate real battles.

You will command overall strategy.

Your toon leaders will each command a battle group.

You will issue orders to them.

They will issue orders to their squadrons of drone pilots.




Your entire fleet must support and protect your most important asset.

Seventy billion dollars of pure destruction.

The M.D. 500.

Which Petra is trained to fire.


Molecular Detachment Device.

We call her "the little Doctor."

Particle beams accelerate from her twin barrels.

At the focus point, they reach critical effective mass.

A chain reaction spreads outwards, shattering molecular bonds.

Leaves nothing standing.

That's the beauty of the little Doctor.

No need to identify a specific ship for the queen.

The chain reaction takes out an entire swarm.

But I'll only get one shot.

Once the Formics see how she works, they won't clump together again.

You will have to win this war one battle at a time.

CHAMRAJNAGAR: Once our battle fleet is detected entering the Formic solar system, we will have no alternative but to engage.

I trust we have chosen our commander well.

There's greatness in him, sir.

And a killer instinct too, I hope.


Let's hope he's all you claim him to be.

We'll be with you soon.


Goodnight, sir.

ENDER: "Dear Valentine... So this is Command School.

"I'm finally here.

"Being a third, I've always been so afraid I might fail.

"That I might not measure up.

"But they made me a leader.

"And I promise you that I'll do everything I can to win this war.

"I know if anything ever happened to you, "I would never forgive myself."

What are they doing?

Harvesting water.

If you're going to use me, I need to be closer.

Too risky. Let's not reveal our best weapon in what should be an easy attack.

Alai, Bean, your Dreads peel away.

Track them from below the ice and mirror their path.

BERNARD: They're swarming!

They see us! Deploy all drones!

Give me four hyperbolic formations with 90 degree offsets!

Open fire!

Bean, Alai, on my call, fire directly up into the ice!

We're gonna shred 'em!

ENDER: In three, two, one... All right!




ENDER: "As our training progresses, "the simulations are becoming more and more complex, and real.

"The pressure to win, day after day, “month after month, is intense.

"We get very little sleep.

"Some days, it's hard to keep up."

I got the breakaway! Great work, Bean!

Squadrons 43 through 57, split to quadrant Foxtrot, 38, 89!

Ender, watch our right flank! We need backup for Bernard.

ENDER: I see it! Bernard, you flank them!

Copy that. Using 10 through 18!

Alai, peel right!

Dink, compensate for the pull of planet G8 and go full throttle!

Bean, mop up in sector Sierra!

I got a sprinter left in Lima!

Do Sierra now!

Bernard, watch your speed!

Dink, you are closing too fast!

You said full throttle! Pull back now, Dink!







We can't absorb these kind of losses!

War isn't a game where you get to reboot and start over!

Sir, I can't win if I don't take any risks.

Nobody's saying not to take risks.

Just don't try and control everything.

Let Bean improvise in the mop-ups.

You focus on the big picture.

Delegate more to your teams! My teams are burned out!

How can they be effective if they don't get any sleep?

Sleep deprivation is part of your training!

A battle with the Formics could last for days!

If I'd been smarter, I could have annihilated Petra's little Doctor while you were micro-managing Bean!

That can't happen, understand?

Yes, sir. Do you?

'Cause I've trained others.

Each one so hopeful.

Each one ultimately a failure.

All right, Colonel. He understands.

So I'm not the first?


But you will be the last.

There's no time to train anyone else.

Son, tomorrow Colonel Rackham will run your final simulation.

And if I win tomorrow? What happens?

You will be ready to face the real enemy.

And you will be the finest commander we've ever trained.

ENDER: One more simulation and I may have to go to war.

What happens when it's no longer a game?

Real war is different.

I still know nothing about my enemy.

ENDER: What if they could talk to us?

They can't.

Dissections show no vocal chords.

There are other ways to communicate.

Ender, this is not a conversation we should be having at 1:00 a.m.

What if they could "think" to one another?

What if we could "think" to them?

We need to sleep.

We have a graduation battle tomorrow.


We're gonna get crushed.

We won't be crushed. We have you.

Now go to sleep.

Goodnight, Petra.

Goodnight, Ender.

You still think he's "the one"?

We're committed.

This boy has the empathy to think like a Formic.

To understand them, anticipate them.

He's not ready.

You're never "ready."

You go when you're "ready enough."


DAP: Easy, sir.

It's graduation day.


Good luck, sir.

BEAN: Attention!

At ease.

BEAN: Sir...

We have an audience.

HYRUM: Commander Wiggin, the Strategos is here today to witness your final simulation.

If you are successful, he will endorse your promotion to Battle Commander of the entire fleet.

Yes, sir!

This simulation is staged around the enemy's home planet.

Good luck, Commander.

Thank you, sir.

Stay calm.

Shoot straight.

Here we go.

They're waiting.

Maybe they think we come in peace.

BERNARD: I don't think Mazer intends for us to find a diplomatic solution.

What's he waiting for?

Just give him a minute.

Ender, what do we do?

BEAN: Ender...

The enemy's gate is down.

Petra. You're up.

They're spread too wide for a chain reaction.

She's right.

Just let him follow his instincts.

All battle groups deploy drones.

Protect your carriers.

Alai! You're squadron five! Engage!

This is suicide.

Oh, crap...

They're swarming.

Clumped enough for you now, Petra?

Once I fire I need time to recharge.

ENDER: Understood.

Just go for the center.

Fire now!

She did it...



Give me false color.

We're not done yet.

But we are so screwed... No, we're not.

Charged, Petra? No. I need two minutes.

All fighters fall back and surround Petra's ship!

BERNARD: Copy that.

ENDER: I want rings within rings.

Layers upon layer. Every fighter we have!

Ender, you're gonna leave our transporters defenseless!

If we're gonna win this battle, Dink, it's all or nothing now!

When the outer layer is hit, the wreckage will continue to drift with us, like a shield.

Do it now!

He's abandoning his entire fleet.

He's in command. There's no stopping him now.

PETRA: Ninety seconds, Ender!

ALAI: No, no... No!

I'm losing my carriers!

My Dreadnaughts are out!

I don't care about Dreadnaughts!

Just protect Petra!

Like we protected Alai when we fought Bonzo!

I hope you know what you're doing.

Ready, Petra? PETRA: In 60 seconds!

What am I aiming for?

The planet.


If we destroy the planet, we destroy the queens.

Game over.

Ender, my targeting sensor needs a clear line of sight!

ENDER: We will clear a path!

All fighters maintain a clockwise rotation!

Focus all firepower forward!

Ender, we're entering their atmosphere!

ALAI: We need to slow down!

BERNARD: We can't! We're one unit now.

PETRA: We're not equipped to handle the heat of passage through an atmosphere!

Our drones are our heat shield.

Keep falling.

Let gravity do the work.

The shield won't hold forever!

We don't need forever.

PETRA: Thirty seconds!

I still don't have a clear shot.

BERNARD: We're burning up! Bean, on my count, accelerate your fighters from the nose of the formation in a continuous stream. Yes, sir!

Like bullets from a rifle, you will clear a visual for Petra!

We will drill a hole through this swarm!

Petra, you will only get a second.

That's all I need!

In three, two, one... Now, Bean!

DINK: Shield integrity's at 5%!

Now, Petra! Now! PETRA: Seven seconds!

BEAN: They've broken the shield!

Fire, Petra! We're out of time!




We did it! Yeah! DINK: Yes!


ALAI: Great job, Ender! Yes! Thank you!

BERNARD: Good game, Ender!

ENDER: Good job, guys!


How about that?

Game over.


What's he saying?

MARTIN: Restoring Ansible connection.

ENDER: What is this?

Why are we watching these images?



HYRUM: Thank you.

Brilliant. Absolutely brilliant.

Thank God for you, son.

Why are these images in the program?


We won.

What do you mean, "we won"?

I beat him.

He runs the simulations. He said it was a game!

MAZER: It was them or us, Ender.

There was no other way.

With this victory, you've won all future battles.

You destroyed them.

For all of us.



HYRUM: Move, move, please!

Move! DAP: Make a way.


Ender... Stay away from me!

You lied! Son, we were afraid if we told you, you might... What?

Refuse to play?

I've killed an entire species!

They would have done the same to us.

No! They waited. What were they waiting for?

Who cares?

We lost 1,000 men on the transporters you abandoned!

I abandoned them in order to win!

Yes! And they died proudly! For us!

They might not have died at all!

If I'd known it was real, I would have... What?

Called for "a dialogue?" They can't even speak.

Watched them! What were they thinking?

Were they building an army for a second invasion?

Or... Or simply preparing to defend themselves...

Ender, stop... from us?

They came to Earth to establish a colony.

We chased them away.

And in 50 years, they never returned.

Makes no difference now.

I will bear the shame of this genocide forever.

No. You will be remembered as a hero!

I will be remembered as a killer!

It was us or them.

And you're sure we've killed every last one of them?

I saw their whole planet destroyed.

How do you know there isn't another colony?

Or another queen out there? There isn't!

We won!

That's all that matters. No.

The way we win matters.


Don't hurt him.


Go on. We need to let him rest.

PETRA: May I stay with him?

Just so he's not alone.


Yes, of course.

DINK: Come on. Just let him rest.

ENDER: What if they could talk to us?

What were they thinking?


What if we could "think" to them?



Ender, wait!


What are you doing, Ender?

ENDER: I know what she wants! Ender!

AUTOMATED MALE VOICE: Warning, you are leaving an oxygen-balanced environment.

Ender, stop!

It's not safe!



Breathe. Just breathe.

ENDER: In the mind game, I saw this place.

What are you talking about?

The Formics accessed the game through me.

Their thoughts. My dreams. All mixed together.

They were trying to communicate.

What are you doing?

Go back.



I have to do this.


ENDER: "Dear Valentine...

"I now know my dreams were never my own.

"They came from her.

"She was always trying to communicate with me.

"I know the Formics better than any living soul.

"I stole their future from them.

"Now I must find a way to make amends."





You're dying...

Is it a queen?

I will find a new home.

I promise.

ENDER: "I miss you, Valentine.

"You won't be hearing from me for a while.

"I need to find out

"if I'm as gifted at peace as I am at war.

"They've awarded me the rank of Admiral

"and left me to my own devices.

"Which suits me fine.

"I'll travel the universe

"and carry with me a precious cargo.