Instead of posting some picture of myself lost deep in instrospective thought, being the true geek I am, my first open commentary post I featured silly stuff like my face imported on Wolverine’s instead.
Anyways, my thought was this. One of my big pet peeves with movies is attatching otherwise good stories to recognizable franchises to gain some attention in this world of big screen movies. I talked about this earlier this week with my post on Hitman. A movie based on a videogame franchise. Everyone can speculate on whether the actor is the right choice to play the iconic character from the game, or if the plot really fits in with the genre. But have you ever stopped and tried to look at it the other way around.
What if this movie was not attached as a sequel to a popular hit? What if there was no video game to rally some buzz about the title? What if they just wrote movies for the sake of writing movies?
Would Dungeons and Dragons have been a better movie if it wasnt the Dungeons and Dragons movie? When I went to see that movie, the beardy geeks behind me were less than quiet pointing out the “in game” references, monster’s names, in game mechanics (he failed his bluff roll). This ruined it for me. Ok, there wasnt much to ruin in the end of it anyways.
There are a lot of movies that if you break down its plot idea, would make for great action movies, with great stories. All you would have left to criticize is if the movie was actually enjoyable. But I think that making it BE something also gives it a quality for it NOT to be when the critics get their hands on it. And by critics, I dont mean Roper and Ebert, I mean you and me.
There comes a time when you have to take your story, and shop it out to enough people and hope that it stands on its own merit. I am sure some well crafted writer came up with the synopsis for Species 4, and didnt intend it to be that at all.
He probably said, “Here is a great scifi story” and someone said, it sounds a little like a different franchise. Next thing you know, a quick revision of the script to lend to franchise history and its on a lunchbox and boom, there it is. Species 4.
I automatically hesitate and expect less when it is a sequel as a reactionary reflex. Hollywood has Pavlov’d me into it. I think Hollywood should put more importance into sequels and adaptations. If its not better than the first, and has nothing of value to offer the franchise, it shouldn’t be made.
What movies do you think would have made a good story and a fun watch if it wasnt for its association to some marketing tool?