War action, environmental dangers and a message of inter-species harmony combine with spirited results in the 3-D CG-animated feature "Battle for Terra," an atmospheric sci-fi saga that may lack major studio marketing heft, but deserves a chance to win over toon-tested audiences.
Director/co-writer Aristomenis Tsirbas, expanding his own short film, unveils a classically devised invasion yarn a la H.G. Wells, but with the twist that humans are the aggressors. They're fleeing an ecologically ravaged Earth to colonize other worlds, while the creatures we'd normally consider aliens -- the squiggly-shaped, gravity-defying pacifists of the energy-rich planet Terra -- are the besieged targets. (In the movie's wry nature-over-industry symbolism, the Terrians live storybook-style in the stems of gigantic mushrooms, while humans roam the galaxies in a creaking metal monstrosity.)