Why Does Hollywood always have to F*** it up?

BrawlMan

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See that's my sticking point. In order to make a Resident Evil movie that's a slow paced horror movie, you have to "adapt" it so much its not Resident Evil anymore. You can't do the giant set pieces, the giant monsters, the action scenes, the goofy dialogue, the international bio-terrorist groups. You have to stick to spooky empty hallways, slow moving groaning zombies, individuals with only a handful of rounds, and no way out of a spooky place.
And at that point, if you want to do the slow paced horror movie you're limited to the first game, the first mansion of the first game, the first floor of the first mansion, and the first 10 or so hallways within the first floor.
After say the first half an hour Resident Evil its no longer the slow paced horror game but an action set-piece adventure game with puzzle elements and zombies are more road hazards than legitimate threats. And that's before the giant spiders, giant snakes, zombie sharks, and magical tree witches, and that is before the bio-titans with swollen eyeballs and cheesy one-liners and ALL of that is before fighting a giant fly in downtown Hong Kong with a rocket launcher.

And I love Resident Evil games. Loved 1, 2, 3, 0, 4, 6, Outbreak I and II, hell I even liked Dead Aim. But these are not slow paced subtle games, they're high flying action games more akin to Duke Nukem than Silent Hill.
I'm not asking for it to be high explosive action films, nor super slow for the whole film. Build up the suspense. These games do have atmosphere. Hell, look at the remakes for 1 & 2. The film adaption for 1 can have a few action moments, and it can work fine. 2 & 3 especially would just be an action horror. It would have a great blend of horror and action. You start with the horror and then you slowly build up to the action. The finale of Resident Evil 2 is just basically Aliens. Resident Evil 3 is literally the Terminator combined with Dawn of the Dead. That one would be the most action focused when put in film too. And all of them can be scary while doing it.

All of these games I mentioned can be adapted properly. They all don't have to have a Michael Bay explosion level of action fest. Aside from maybe 3, but that's just being generous. Then again, the city actually does get nuked.
 

Gordon_4

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I mean, just looking through the past maybe 10 video game movies, none of these directors are what I would call "talented". Unfair and mean I know, but I am just basing on the fact that most of them either had no experience with blockbuster movies or had their movies are their directorial debuts. So that would fall into the first category I gave. It's also worth pointing out that a lot of these dudes are just old. That doesn't mean they can't be fans of video games, but it does make it less likely.


See, I don't buy this idea, at least for video game movies as a general concept. I think just remaking a game's story beat for beat into a movie is pointless. What the hell would a video game benefit from being made into a movie? A book or a comic, you get words and pictures transformed into an entirely different medium. A videogame movie, that just directly lifts the game's plot, could not possibly be better than the game (unless the game had other issues to begin with). We see this in Tomb Raider and Warcraft, and their flaws definitely come from trying to just be the games.

But there are plenty of video game movies that aren't adapting the whole plotline from the games. This movie obviously didn't, it wasn't even really about Mortal Kombat. Sonic definitely didn't, same for Detective Pikachu, Assassin's Creed, Resident Evil, Monster Hunter, and Hitman. They all tried something unique and they were still mostly terrible. I think we're all just waiting for a miracle to happen: a good director who is knowledgeable about the franchise coming to a studio willing to keep their hands off and letting them do something new, without feeling the need to introduce an obviously ridiculously popular franchise to the audience.
.......I really liked Warcraft.
 
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hanselthecaretaker

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But I think that's where you're wrong. You're trying to take an interactive, 40+ hour long experience and compress it to a non-interactive, 90min experience, expecting the same result. Its not. A movie is fundamentally different than a video game. The stories you can tell with a movie are not the same as a video game. Pacing is different, dialogue is different, scene composition is different, who the audience is supposed to identify is different. Its a different medium.
The phrase a picture is worth a thousand words springs to mind. Even setting aside the numerical value of a thousand, the principle that words and a picture are fundamentally different still applies. Imagine trying to tell what a picture is, but you have a much more limited amount of words to use. That's what your asking movie writers to do with a video game, so you shouldn't be surprised when they fail at the impossible task.
This is mainly why HBO and a few others are killing it with TV series’. It’s the perfect format for people’s attention spans and addictive personality traits to keep them hooked over the course of dozens of hours; have water cooler moments every week when it’s on, and waiting with baited breath for the next season during hiatus.
 

CriticalGaming

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The question i have for people arguing that video game stories are too long, explain to me why movies based off books work? LOTR, Potter, Jurassic Park, The Shining, there are countless examples of films taking huge stories and making reasonable movies out of them. So i dont buy the excuse that a game is too long.
 
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hanselthecaretaker

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The movie ends with plenty of open doors and a wealth of possibility for potential sequels or, as Russo said, "something bigger". (Via Collider.)

The obvious answer to the 'What would a sequel be about?' question is Johnny Cage. One of the most famous Mortal Kombat characters was notoriously left out of the movie, but for good reason.

At the end of Mortal Kombat, Cole Young (Lewis Tan) says he's headed to Hollywood to find another fighter to help stop the Outworld warriors from making a move for the throne before the actual tournament (which we'll get to in a second). As he moves out of frame, there's a poster for a film starring Johnny Cage.

Leaving him out of the first film came down to a few good reasons. Firstly, as producer Todd Garner explained: "I want to make a sequel, and I've now got Johnny Cage, which hasn't been used in the first one."

But equally importantly, he added. "When you think about Mortal Kombat, if you just think about the patina of the movie, it has a very Asian feel to it. And I early on felt uncomfortable having a white male lead kind of lead that charge in the first movie."

"I wanted to see [Sub-Zero's] death in this film. And ultimately, I wanted the movie to end with him being portaled out of Earthrealm, to where he's going to become the next iteration of himself.

"And that was all written, that was scripted. That Bi-Han goes into the black portal because we know where he's going. The blackness of the portal is just great for the Noob Saibot character. He literally goes into the smoky blackness." (Via Polygon.)

Russo confirmed he had plans for a trilogy of Mortal Kombat movies to be planned out as a pre-tournament film, a tournament film and a post-tournament film – which explains why the tournament never happens in Mortal Kombat. He explained: "The idea was that this was going to be a pre-tournament movie that would hopefully sow the seeds for the tournament, the final."



So yeah, that’s the idea ftr. I just hope he gets the message that no one really cares about Cole’s character, unless he plans on pulling off a miracle twist of some sort.
 
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SilentPony

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The question i have for people arguing that video game stories are too long, explain to me why movies based off books work? LOTR, Potter, Jurassic Park, The Shining, there are countless examples of films taking huge stories and making reasonable movies out of them. So i dont buy the excuse that a game is too long.
Unm the movies were not much like the books, that's why. Entire characters, plot lines, and endings are different.
The Shining, the Kubrick one at least, is basically nothing like the book to the point Stephen King openly say its the worst adaptation of his books ever. Kubrick basically took the name of the characters and the general setting, and made the rest up.
Harry Potter is notorious for not including major character, plot points, changing character's backstory and motivation and smooshing two characters together.
LOTR same shit. Like the Aragorn/Arewn wasn't in the books, or at least she wasn't a major character with entire scenes about her. Entire characters are lost, other characters doing what they did to make sure the movies ran smoother.
Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park book is an analogy to Vietnam and fighting an unstoppable enemy in the Jungle, and ends with the Navy napalm bombing the entire island, and the survivors being arrested and permanently detained by the Costa Rican government. And the story with Dr. Grant and the kids has way more river rapids, boats, spying on dinosaur smugglers, and murder than the movie that just had them pimping around in the jungle for a little bit. Like the whole plot about stealing dinosaurs off the island? In the movie the fat guy falls over and loses his glasses and is a loser and get eaten. In the book the bad guys successfully steal a bunch of baby dinosaurs off the island and set sail.

They're all good movies, you are right. They've all also been heavily adapted to make them so.
 
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CriticalGaming

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They're all good movies, you are right. They've all also been heavily adapted to make them so.
So why can they adapt and include things that are good for book movies, but only do stupid shit with video game films? The point is the same, the adaptations of books always seems to work much better than any video game film.


I will note that even the best video game movie ever made, is still technically just a book adaptation....Ready Player One. A movie that did indeed take a lot of liberty with the book which is expected due to how much filler books tend to have, but that same adaptation can work with video game plots as well.

We see video games as 40+ hour interactive stories. However those huge hour numbers are solely due to the gameplay and the player fucking around to add to the runtime. No video game has a 40+ hours of strictly story content. It doesn't exist.

Take TLOU2 a 30 hour game, however if you cut out all the gameplay and whatnot you'll actually find maybe 8+ hours of actual cutscenes, of which you can easily slice up filler and streamline scenes to cut another several hours out of that.

I think you could even tell a JRPG's story in a couple hours if you made it a film. It's all a matter of taking the elements that matter and piecing the key plot together in ways that make it work. And I feel that isn't an unreasonable request of a multi-million dollar production from Hollywood.

Hell I would be happy if they made a shitty movie, but the movie respected the source material. I just don't understand the point of making a film and then throwing away the source material for the sake of telling some other piece of shit story that nobody gives a fuck about.
 

hanselthecaretaker

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So why can they adapt and include things that are good for book movies, but only do stupid shit with video game films? The point is the same, the adaptations of books always seems to work much better than any video game film.


I will note that even the best video game movie ever made, is still technically just a book adaptation....Ready Player One. A movie that did indeed take a lot of liberty with the book which is expected due to how much filler books tend to have, but that same adaptation can work with video game plots as well.

We see video games as 40+ hour interactive stories. However those huge hour numbers are solely due to the gameplay and the player fucking around to add to the runtime. No video game has a 40+ hours of strictly story content. It doesn't exist.

Red Dead 2 would handily exceed that, if you factor in dialog outside of the main narrative


“Bringing the script to life meant 2,200 days of motion-capture work — compared with just five for Grand Theft Auto III — requiring 1,200 actors, all SAG-AFTRA, 700 of them with dialogue.“We’re the biggest employers of actors in terms of numbers of anyone in New York, by miles,” says Dan.

Before a motion-capture shoot that would last two or three weeks, there were meetings “four hours each day for four days. We want it as tight as possible for motion-capture because we’re burning a lot of money very quickly [at those sessions].”



The average length of ped scripts was also 80 pages, so x 700 I’m not even sure how many hours that would amount to. But yeah, just cutscene-driven stuff is another story.
 
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Gyrobot

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I'd say its probably the stigma video games still have. With a video game movie, you're not going to attract people who either have talent, or actually care about the franchise (because there's none of them in Hollywood). I don't think it has anything to do with video games themselves. I mean really, if books, comics, manga, anime, WHATEVER can have good movies these days, why not video games? But just because it's a video game movie, nobody in the industry really cares about it. The movies are then half-assed.

Just look at this movie. Did anyone actually think the story would amount to anything for this movie? If they just did the fights well, I wouldn't have cared about the dismal plot and characters. But no, the fights bar a few were generic as hell. Not surprising, when it was the director's debut. The man was previously known for directing commercials.
Anime and manga do not have that great adaptations even in Japan, the ones that work are either down to earth stuff or can be easily adapted from popular genres like samurai films as only Kenshin had a competently done adaptation
 

SilentPony

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So why can they adapt and include things that are good for book movies, but only do stupid shit with video game films? The point is the same, the adaptations of books always seems to work much better than any video game film.
Because books are much closer to a movie than a video game. A book is a non-interactive narrative, same as a movie. The pacing is much similar, with characters doing X and Y in search of Z. Whereas in a video game the story is either a multi-choice that can't be translated into a movie, or a non-narrative focused game like Mortal Kombat, with different focus, pacing, narrative structure and timing.

Without the gameplay, what is Mortal Kombat? Fit dudes and dudettes fighting monsters and ninjas with kung fu in ancient temples, and they're violent. That's Mortal Kombat in a way that doesn't need to be interacted with because the story was ordinally meant to be for a video game. In that light the MK movies are very faithful to the video games plot. And if they don't make good movies as a result, I would suggest taking the video game interactive part out of Mortal Kombat is a mistake. The experience that is Mortal Kombat cannot be successfully and enjoyably translated into movie form, full stop.
 

hanselthecaretaker

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Because books are much closer to a movie than a video game. A book is a non-interactive narrative, same as a movie. The pacing is much similar, with characters doing X and Y in search of Z. Whereas in a video game the story is either a multi-choice that can't be translated into a movie, or a non-narrative focused game like Mortal Kombat, with different focus, pacing, narrative structure and timing.

Without the gameplay, what is Mortal Kombat? Fit dudes and dudettes fighting monsters and ninjas with kung fu in ancient temples, and they're violent. That's Mortal Kombat in a way that doesn't need to be interacted with because the story was ordinally meant to be for a video game. In that light the MK movies are very faithful to the video games plot. And if they don't make good movies as a result, I would suggest taking the video game interactive part out of Mortal Kombat is a mistake. The experience that is Mortal Kombat cannot be successfully and enjoyably translated into movie form, full stop.
Actually makes perfect sense if we take Ebert’s comment about what it takes to be a good movie (“It’s not what it’s about, but how it is about it”) and apply it to what his protégé Roeper said about it (“One might reasonably surmise longtime fans of “Mortal Kombat” would have a better time playing the latest version of the game than watching this origins story.”).
 

SilentPony

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Actually makes perfect sense if we take Ebert’s comment about what it takes to be a good movie (“It’s not what it’s about, but how it is about it”) and apply it to what his protégé Roeper said about it (“One might reasonably surmise longtime fans of “Mortal Kombat” would have a better time playing the latest version of the game than watching this origins story.”).
I actually agree completely with this.
I think some games can be translated into a movie form, just maybe not tournament fighters specifically. Maybe a walking simulator like that Rapture one, or Dear Esther or something like that, games that are basically visual novels to begin with.
Something like Mass Effect that's so individual and personal to the player's playthrough, with like a dozen and a half romances, alternate story arc endings, choices, weapons, classes, backstories, etc...a movie that just picks one version, changes some shit, and boils it down into a mass marketing bland experience would be a disaster.
 

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The experience that is Mortal Kombat cannot be successfully and enjoyably translated into movie form, full stop.
The Mortal Kombat 95 film and SF II: The Animated Movie beg to differ. Also, two of the Fatal Fury films.
 

SilentPony

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The Mortal Kombat 95 film and SF II: The Animated Movie beg to differ. Also, two of the Fatal Fury films.
They can beg all they want, doesn't change reality. The acting, plot, pacing, action and visual effects of the original MK movies are hot garbage. The plot is all over the place with character's personalities and motivations changing from scene to scene, and it doesn't include the trademark violence and bloodshed.

And the Street Fighter movies, even the anime ones, are loose adaptations of the games that don't include the alternating story arcs, or the majority of the characters, or the story of Street Fighter. The movie is a revenge, espionage movie about street gangs and spycraft and revenge for family/friend killings.
Street Fighter 2 the game is about Bison just wanting to do his own Mortal Kombat and just inviting people over for a backyard punch-up.

If you like those movies, that's fine. One is a trash movie, the other is not a faithful adaptation of the source material.
 

CriticalGaming

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Because books are much closer to a movie than a video game. A book is a non-interactive narrative, same as a movie. The pacing is much similar, with characters doing X and Y in search of Z. Whereas in a video game the story is either a multi-choice that can't be translated into a movie, or a non-narrative focused game like Mortal Kombat, with different focus, pacing, narrative structure and timing.
Very rarely does player choice actually ever affect the overall narative. Even in games where "choices matter". Does any choice you make as Shepard stop the reaper invasion? Does any choice you make in Tomb Raider stop Lara from getting her tits kicked in?

At best player choice might prevent an optional character from dying (ala Metal Gear Solid), but ultimately the choice has very little to do with the actual story.

It would not be hard to simply script the plot of a game into the form of a movie. Sure it would be shorter, because all the player fapping about would obviously get cut but otherwise it could work just as well.

The experience that is Mortal Kombat cannot be successfully and enjoyably translated into movie form, full stop.
The first Mortal Kombat movie was great. It was cheesy and that was why it was great. It knew the game's plot at that point made no sense and it hammed it up and as a result it was fantastic for what it was. All they needed to do was make an R-rated version of that film and this could have easily been the greatest video game film ever. Especially with improved fighting chorography to make things more brutally impactful. It could have been done the same way many Martial Arts Tournament movies have been done before and been just as good. Bloodsport, The Quest, several Bruce Lee films, and on. And Thailand has been producing some really fucking brutal fighting movies are a long time, there was absolutely 100% a way that this MK movie could have been outstanding.
 
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They can beg all they want, doesn't change reality. The acting, plot, pacing, action and visual effects of the original MK movies are hot garbage. The plot is all over the place with character's personalities and motivations changing from scene to scene, and it doesn't include the trademark violence and bloodshed.

And the Street Fighter movies, even the anime ones, are loose adaptations of the games that don't include the alternating story arcs, or the majority of the characters, or the story of Street Fighter. The movie is a revenge, espionage movie about street gangs and spycraft and revenge for family/friend killings.
Street Fighter 2 the game is about Bison just wanting to do his own Mortal Kombat and just inviting people over for a backyard punch-up.

If you like those movies, that's fine. One is a trash movie, the other is not a faithful adaptation of the source material.
While the effects for the original MK did not age well, that wasn't the main point. The 95 film had people that cared and when Paul WS Anderson actually tried at the time. The movie has a simple and effective story. I actually care about what's going on with all the careers; especially Liu Kang. The fight scenes are awesome and well choreographed. At the end of the day, Mortal Kombat is just Bloodsport combined with Enter the Dragon. The only MK film that is truly hot garbage, is Annihilation. That's not an opinion, it's a fact of life.

As for Street Fighter 2 The animated movie, it works because it takes a pragmatic adaption. There is no tournament, but the way they changed it actually made it work and fits. Street Fighter assassin's Fist is actually a good live action Street Fighter movie. All the rest of the live action should be harder films are garbage though. Though the 94 film is the least entertaining with Bison. Your problem is you can't see what's good and what's in front of you. Appreciate what was actually done and given. Well it's always good to expect more, but don't set those expectations too high or into impossible degrees. Mortal Kombat 95, Street Fighter 2 The animated movie, and Street Fighter assassin's Fist are good film to game adaptions. Your word doesn't make everything true. Deal with it. You don't like them; fine. That is your choice. But I will defend these for the feats they accomplished. Because a lot of game to movie dash and still suffer from ignoring certain aspects that are unnecessary or adding in elements that are not needed. And it's not even immune to movies. Sonic X I still dislike because of the unnecessary changes and the addition of Chris Thorndyke. A generic rich kid OC nobody was asking for.
 

hanselthecaretaker

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I actually agree completely with this.
I think some games can be translated into a movie form, just maybe not tournament fighters specifically. Maybe a walking simulator like that Rapture one, or Dear Esther or something like that, games that are basically visual novels to begin with.
Something like Mass Effect that's so individual and personal to the player's playthrough, with like a dozen and a half romances, alternate story arc endings, choices, weapons, classes, backstories, etc...a movie that just picks one version, changes some shit, and boils it down into a mass marketing bland experience would be a disaster.
What’s ironic is that the simplest game concepts like walking sims would make the best movies and only need a fraction of the budget. The only caveat to making it happen is…well, I was going to say obscurity or general lack of mainstream exposure, but that could actually work in their favor.

I can see it now…*rave reviews*, and oh btw, bet you didn’t even know it was based on a video game!