VIdeo Game MOvies - Underwhelming!
So often video game movies are a massive let down! Even stranger, if you research the best video game movies and the worst video game movies, you will find the same movies on both lists.
For instance, check out these two articles on Gamespot and Gamesradar. Both lists have some absolute cash cows which although aren’t terribly well written are very much watchable regardless. I regularly enjoy to watch the Resident Evil franchise or the Silent Hill film. Although I will say that us horror fans have a much lower quality threshold in comparison to fans of other genre.
Today we are looking at the 5 games that we want to see made into fantastic movies!
1) Yakuza Franchise
First and foremost, check out this great video by Super Eyepatch Wolf on why you should play the Yakuza series. Now that is out of the way. Why would this make a great addition to our list of video game movies that we want to see?
The realistic world we see in Yakuza means the transportation from game to movie would be relatively seemless. Kamurocho is based on Tokyo’s Kabukicho red light district, which one day I hope to visit. As well as this, the games in the franchise are often praised for their outstanding storytelling and like any gangster film is full of story turns that compel you to keep playing.
Add to this a stellar soundtrack and worldwide appeal through an eastern story in video games. It is bound to be a commercial success not only Western shores but also in the likes of Japan as well. They have already had one bit of the cherry so far with a loosely adapted film, Like a Dragon in 2007, directed by Takashi Miike. Nevertheless a more direct attempt will certainly be appreciated.
2) THe Evil Within
Video game movies based on horror games are already prevalent in modern cinema. Resident Evil and Silent Hill come to mind although I would say neither captures the survival horror aspect of the original games.
Therefore it is clear to see there is a market there for games of this type. Furthermore games in this genre can be very profitable as evidenced by the $1.2 billion gross box office compared to the budget of $288 million. That sort of ratio is definitely not to be sniffed at. These films work! As mentioned earlier horror movie lovers tend to have a more accepting threshold when it comes to lower quality films.
On the other hand The Evil Within really creates a great atmosphere. The hospital setting and the terrifying monsters would be enough for me to watch a film like this regardless of critical acclaim. Imagine actually seeing Laura with realistic cinematography.
3) Apex Legends
The one thing Battle Royale games lack by design for me is a story, it is part of the reason I didn’t enjoy the latest iteration of Star Wars Battlefront games. Some may wonder why Apex Legends got the nod over Fortnite? I have played and enjoyed both however I believe Apex Legends lends itself to a film a lot more that the likes of Fortnite.
Primarily the absense of characters other than your own silent protagonist really shoots (no pun intended) Fortnite in the foot as far as video game movies are concerned. The characters of Apex Legends have more in depth backstories, lore and personalities that would be more conducive to a story based film.
We could investigate the origin of their powers, the story behind the battle royale and even some of the technology used. I can’t argue that a Fortnite movie wouldn’t be a bigger commercial success than Apex Legends yet I do believe it would be a movie with better potential.
Also check out my article on why Apex Legends needs a solo mode.
4) Kingdom Hearts
As long as they streamline the convoluted story and perhaps focus on the first game. It is hard to argue this would not be a commercial success. Disney fanboys and fangirls would eat this right up. As an adult I would gladly take my five year old daughter to see this.
Disney films are usually very well executed however one thing I would like more of is utilisation of the Final Fantasy universe that was sadly lacking in the latest game. As a result the latest game in the franchise was really disappointing from a long time fan perspective. I would soon recover with the announcement of a movie tie in as long as the game disappointments were rectified.
5) The Last of Us
I was a little torn on this one. The truth is this is one of my favourite games of all time. Do I trust someone with this? Hell no!
I have been stung before with one of my other favourite games, Final Fantasy by the movie The Spirits Within. As far as video games movies go, this is one of the lows. On the other hand there is no reason a film rendition of The Last of Us could not be a success in modern cinema. it is dependent on a few factors.
Casting: The gruff nature of Joel vs Youthful Determination of Ellie has to be spot on. The interactions between the two in the game are what make the story as emotional as it is. Similarly actors who play these roles must have a similar level of chemistry on screen.
Brutality: The world of The Last of Us is a veritable nightmare yet equally beautiful. Directors may be tempted to hide the more gruesome scenes behind poor lighting yet I believe that would do it a disservice. The world is both beautiful and ruthless. Images like the one above showcase a world reclaimed by nature and the spores. Although these are both brutal, some of the most harrowing moments come from the human characters.
Script: In most films of a scary disposition the script takes a back seat. Yet if this were to be one of the successes in Video Game Movies, the script has to take center stage. This will form the basis of the characters and make the audience empathise with their position.
As with the last entry on this list of Video Game Movies we want to see. I am torn on every one. There is always a risk the movie will crash and end up as another steaming pile of Video Game Movies disasters on the scrap heap of film fiascos.
If you enjoyed this article why not check out my article on the best fantasy TV shows.