The Electric Commentary

Friday, October 21, 2005

One Word Titles

There are a bunch of movies being released this week that have one word titles. They include Stay, Dreamers, and Doom, starring the Rock (What? Couldn't get the license to Wolfenstein?). They're all reviewed at the L&N Line. Ebert's review of Doom is also pretty amusing:

Their leader is Sarge (The Rock), and their members include Reaper (Karl Urban), Destroyer (Deobia Oparei), Mac (Yao Chin), Goat (Ben Daniels), Duke (Razaaq Adoti), Portman (Richard Brake) and The Kid (Al Weaver). Now you know everything you need to know about them.

I'd just like to add that I'm sick of video game movies. Like The Slate's Will Carlough, I've seen too many, and they're all bad. Why no movies based on board games? The high stakes world of real estate development in Monopoly! The emotional roller coaster of Chutes and Ladders! And let's not forget the ever-whimsical Candyland. And who wouldn't go to see Mousetrap (Fantastic finish, although the setup takes a while).

(Note: I seem to remember a conversation from the short lived animated TV show, The Critic, in which Jay Sherman's actor friend Jeremy Hawk was going to make Rubik's Cube: The Movie. The plot was that there was a plane full of supermodels that was going to explode unless Jeremy could solve a Rubik's Cube in under an hour. The catch was that Jeremy was colorblind. Fortunately, his partner wasn't. But his partner was a dog! Now there's a movie. Plus you have a ready-made sequel: Rubik's Revenge!)

Anyway, it's bad enough that Hollywood types are so devoid of ideas that they have to remake every campy 70s TV show out there, but this is starting to get ridiculous.


  • You know what the real problem with making video game movies is? The fact that most story-driven video games take 10+ hours to complete, and it's very difficult to compress that experience into a 90-minute viewing. The most amazing video game stories take 40-50 hours to tell. Try to put that into a movie and you get the certified debacle that was Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within.

    What a lot of companies don't realize is that video games are a new medium of storytelling. Turning them into films robs them of most of their power. Sure this is the problem that has been faced with book since the beginnings of the film industry, but the relationship between the two is different. While films add visuals and sound to books at the expense of detail, films add nothing but additional revenue and branding to video games yet take away detail as well as their interactive essence.

    Interestingly enough, I hear that the Doom film has a lengthy first person sequence in the sprit of the video game (a game that is dear to my heart I might add). That might be pretty cool.

    By Anonymous Rashid Muhammad, at 5:18 PM  

  • What, you're heart doesn't flutter at the thought of a Three's Company movie? Glad to see we both agree about the possibility of a Wolfenstein movie. Great blogger minds think alike.

    By Blogger Mike, at 12:52 PM  

  • Don't expect the flood of video game based movies to end anytime soon.

    At least two more are already in the works. One of them will be based on the "Hitman" game series and will be starring Vin Diesel. The second will be a game based on the Xbox's #1 franchise, Halo. What makes this interesting is that LOTR's Peter Jackson (hero to the common man) will be producing the Halo movie.

    By Anonymous Spenser, at 10:45 AM  

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