Saturday, February 11, 2012

Rant: Gamers vs. Hollywood

After debating whether to review Tekken and caving into the idea, I figured I should rant about video games being turned into movies. Now I must admit that not all video game movies are terrible, but majority of them have yet to satisfy gamers when they are brought to the big screen. In this post, I will discuss a few video game movies I have seen and my opinions about them.

As a child gamer, I remember seeing Mortal Kombat and Super Mario Bros. on TV. From skimming opinions on YouTube, they range from terrible to entertained. Now I haven't seen either of these movies in years, but I can clearly remembered being entertained by both movies. I've seen Super Mario Bros. several times on the Disney Channel, I believe, and I remember how ridiculous the movie was. Looking back on it now in my mind and through these opinion videos about it, I honestly don't think the makers of the movie were taking it seriously in the first place and because of me having that mindset reflecting back on it, I still enjoy this movie and would re-watch it in a heartbeat along with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. As for the Mortal Kombat movies, I really don't remember how those went other than the sequel had more characters in it. But I don't think I had many complaints about it either.

Moving forward to some more recent video game adaptations with the Resident Evil series. Now I must admit I'm not familiar with the game at all. I've never played a single game from the choice. It just doesn't interest me, so I guess this shall be a bit one sided. I'm sure there might be some inaccuracies in the series, but as a movie lover I thought the movies were pretty enjoyable with my minimal knowledge. Although, I think I could've lived without Resident Evil: Afterlife. I'm happy I didn't see that in pointless 3D. Even more pointless is their decision to make another movie and possibly reviving some deceased characters. I kinda expected this to happen, but all the ideas I've heard about this new addition doesn't sound good at all. If I see it, I'll just wait until it comes out on DVD and I can check it out at the library.

Silent Hill, on the other hand, I am more familiar with. I love the story between the first and third game, since the movie based itself on those two. My best friend and I were excited when we heard the news that they would be making a movie. We even planned on cosplaying in the theater when it came out. It took a couple years or so, but I was able to see it in the theater twice as well as purchase the DVD upon release. In the beginning, I really loved it, but upon re-watching at home, I realized how many flaws were present. I commend them on doing a way better job with sticking to the story than Tekken, but they also share a similar problem of mixing games together when it wasn't necessary. Sure, Pyramid Head is a badass character, but he's pretty much irrelevant to the present characters and he's in Silent Hill 2. With all the cramming, I'm curious how the sequel will pan out. But yet again, it's another movie I would love to remake for the better of the die hard SH fans out there. I wonder if non-fans were confused by the storyline.

Skirting away from the horror genre to another title I was exciting about seeing is Tomb Raider. In short, this is the first series I obsessed over. I thought Lara Croft was the baddest chick ever and I still do to this day. I still get excited seeing amazing cosplays of her, so clearly I still love the series and I'm so excited about the makeover for PS3. Anyway, when it was announced that Angelina Jolie was playing the role of Lara, I was pleased with their choice and I was ready to see this epic adventure on the big screen. Since I haven't seen this movie in quite some time (like years), I remember being content, but also frustrated with some the actions portrayed by Ms. Croft. I think it declined even more in the sequel. I vaguely remember there being some backstory errors and the fact she had a love interest bothered me. No, this is no homoerotic attraction toward a 3D character; this is a "why do attractive heroes always have to have a love interest in movies!?". Can't they be badass and independent and just laugh off those who fond over them. I guess James Bond is the closest to that.

After ripping apart live action adaptations in my Tekken review and be somewhat unhappy with Silent Hill, one might think that perhaps being animated might be better. Well, from what I've seen from others' comments it might not work out that well. I am not a Final Fantasy fan at all, but I've seen Advent Children a billion times...mostly because some of my friends are die-hard FF fanatics. Even though I never want to see this movie for at least another five years, I thought it was pretty decent, but it seems like another animated FF movie wasn't as good. Let me remind you that there is a laughable Tekken movie that is animated. Lastly, I've seen Galarians: Rion a few times on MTV2 enough to go out and buy the sequel for PlayStation 2 and the DVD. I thought it was a very intriguing movie and seemed to resemble the game pretty close, but I honestly haven't gotten that far in the game.

So, what's my complaint on creating movies based off video games? For one, I think the project's group should consider what gamers think while they're piecing together the movie first, then worry about the movie goers that are unfamiliar with the story. If you cater to the gamers first, then it'll send a positive message for other movie goers to go see it. Obviously, accuracy is important, but, using Tekken as a reference, you don't have to go into extreme detail with costumes sometimes. Sometimes you have to alter things a little, but the important thing is to keep character traits and backstories on the same page at least. Like the Mortal Kombat re-envisioned trailer I keep praising, they seemingly keep the character traits of the characters, but set them in a totally new environment that makes it intriguing.

Hopefully, one day, there will be more successful transitions from video games to movie theater (and vice versa). Until then, I hope Hollywood deeply considers putting gamers first when they try their hands at recreating popular series, because it would definitely increase sales.

1 comment:

Corey said...

I remember when a friend of mine told me that someone had made a Mega Man movie. I was extremely worried about what I might see, especially when the only place to find it was some fanatic's website. Ugh, poorly made fan fiction at best. I couldn't have cringed any harder if I saw my Mom in a bukkake film. Disturbing mental image, but a perfect description of my reaction. I just ask that anyone that attempts to make a video game movie, to tread lightly.