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Battlefield Earth

Battlefield Earth is the title of a science fiction novel written by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. It was first published in 1980 by St. Martin's Press, though all subsequent reprintings have been by Scientology's own publishing company, Bridge Publications. This was Hubbard's first science fiction novel since his pulp magazine days of the 1940s, and it was promoted as Hubbard's "return" to science fiction after a long hiatus.

Written in the style of the pulp era (during which Hubbard had cut his teeth as a writer), the novel is a massive work (over 750 pages in hardcover, 1000+ in paperback) telling a fictional story set approximately 1,000 years in our future. Before the story begins, the reader learns, an evil alien race called the "Psychlos" invaded Earth near the end of the 20th Century, destroying human civilization in a matter of days and reducing humankind to little more than cave dwellers. A thousand years later, a series of events is put into action that finally gives humanity a chance to rebel against their alien overlords and free Earth from the control of a massive galactic empire.

Reaction to the book from literary critics and science fiction fans has been decidedly mixed since its publication. While generally acknowledged to be one of Hubbard's better books, reviews and comments on it have ranged from being thrilling and action-packed to plodding, overlong, and even unreadable. In particular, accusations have been made that the book includes themes of Scientology.

Critics of Scientology also claim that, along with many of Hubbard's books, the organization of Scientology engaged in a massive public relations campaign to buy enormous quantities of the book, in order to place it onto best-seller lists and foster the illusion of Hubbard as a best-selling author. Various bookstore chains (including Waldenbooks) have cited examples of Scientologists repeatedly coming into stores and buying armfuls of the book at a time. Several bookstores reported that shipments of the book arrived with the store's own price tags already affixed to them, even before they were unpacked from the shipping boxes.

The movie

After his success in the movie Pulp Fiction, Hollywood star John Travolta pushed hard to make a movie adaptation of Battlefield Earth a reality. Travolta, a devoted Scientologist and one of the organization's most vocal supporters, described the book in interviews as "like Star Wars, only better." The movie Battlefield Earth came out in 2000 and it was based on the novel. It was directed by Roger Christian and starred John Travolta, Barry Pepper, Forest Whitaker, Kim Coates, Richard Tyson, Sabine Karsenti, Michael Byrne, and Kelly Preston.

In this futuristic epic, a greedy security chief, played by John Travolta, enslaves prisoners to mine gold for him. Barry Pepper plays the human or man-animal who decides to liberate his people by fighting the security chief.

The film received many bad reviews, including from the New York Times and Roger Ebert. It was also voted on the Internet Movie Database as one of the 100 worst films [1] The ultimate insult came in 2001, when the movie received 7 Razzie Awards, including Worst Movie of the Year and Worst Actor (Travolta), effectively classifying the movie as the worst film made in Hollywood since Showgirls.

See Also: List of movies - List of actors - List of directors - List of documentaries - List of Hollywood movie studios

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