I made a post not too long ago talking about why the movie that Sony recently announced based on the nigh-perfect game The Last of Us is going to suck (linked here), and it got me to thinking about something. I genuinely believe that none of the great video games that I love could be made into good films. Video games are a medium that, while it often aims for being cinematic, is so much more. However, that doesn’t stop Hollywood from trying to make movies based on them. And every single one of them, without a single exception, has sucked. Badly. They are pieces of shit. And I have made a list of the worst offenders, as I see it. If you have any more that didn’t make the list and you want to make sport of, please, let me know in the comments section. That said, let’s get started.
10. Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
This game was a remake of a very old and very dated puzzle-platformer that had faded into obscurity but was brought back to life. Arguably the best 3D puzzle-platformer ever made, it changed the face of games like it for all time. It had a cool premise, cool characters and a very intense story that kept your attention. This movie, on the other hand, was awful! For one thing, TERRIBLE casting! I mean, Jake Gyllenhaal as the Prince? Seriously?! Not only does he REALLY not look the part, but he lacked any of the wit and charm that the Prince had in the game. Add to that a very boring, by-the-numbers action-adventure film, without a single puzzle or cool set-piece moment that showed off the Dagger of Time’s power, and this movie was an uninspired and unengaging bore that was clearly made to try and capitalize on what Disney and Jerry Bruckheimer Studios didn’t realize was a tattered popularity of the franchise. Thankfully, it didn’t work and the film was a flop at the box office. Though, ironically, it was the highest-grossing video game film made. The fact that it was still a failure says something about how hated these kinds of movies are. And dammit, why is Ben Kingsley in this movie?!
9. Mortal Kombat
Where do I get started? The original Mortal Kombat games (which this film was based on) didn’t have the greatest controls or the neatest characters. All things considered, they were a pretty average fighter, save for one saving grace – blood and guts. The Mortal Kombat games were made so that friends could kick the shit out of each other and tear their enemy to pieces. They were the fighting game of choice among my friends. This movie, on the other hand, was a PG-13 martial arts film. It had NONE of the blood and guts of the source material. The special effects are just shy of gag-inducing. The “acting” is so bad that it can be funny from time to time. The sequel is even worse, with fights that are just shy of backyard wrestling. If these movies had at least had some blood and guts, that would be something of a redemption. But nope, they are just plain bad.
The Hitman games were brutally-hard and unforgiving, focusing on stealth to the extreme. You played as Agent 47, a master assassin who specializes in killing his foes quickly and efficiently, without being noticed. Being noticed was often hazardous to your health. The Agent 47 in the film, on the other hand, is nothing more than a skinny Rambo who goes out of his way to make a big production out of all his kills. The action scenes are dull and the plot is beyond cliche. It’s another one of those stories about the cold, unfeeling killer and the woman who gets him to come out of his shell. This plot has been done to DEATH, sometimes very well and sometimes far worse than this. Much like Prince of Persia, it is a film that takes no risks and is rather lifeless for it. And, like Prince of Persia, it failed at the box office.
Doom is an awesome game! It’s low on plot and high on action. The plot is that you are a badass Marine who is stationed on Mars. A portal to Hell opens, demons burst forth, kill everyone but you and you decide to kill them back. Simple, clean and awesome, with some cool weapons and some pretty imaginative foes. Especially when you get to Hell. This movie, on the other hand, does what the film adaptation of The Golden Compass did and eschews the religious aspect and removes the portal to Hell. In the film, they decide to make some science mumbo-jumbo about a 26th chromosome and how it can either turn people into superheroes or monsters. The action is boring, the enemy designs are lifeless, the characters are cliche. The scene where they have a first-person perspective is hilariously awful. Not to mention, and this may just be the biggest flaw – they have The Rock as the final boss of the film! Of all the cool demon designs that they could have worked with, they have the fucking Rock as their final enemy? That’s so dumb! Oh, and to top it all off, terrible cinematography. For real, the entire movie is show in a kind of blue filter and WAY too close. It was like they didn’t want the audience to actually see what was going on. After all, that would force us to endure some enjoyment. Wouldn’t want that, would we?
6. Wing Commander
Oh do I hate this movie. I fucking hate everything to do with this movie. The Wing Commander series was made during a time when a lot of games were using live-action to integrate into their games. With VERY few exceptions, this was a disaster. Wing Commander was one of those exceptions. With the talents of Malcolm McDowell, the guy who played Biff in Back to the Future and Mark fucking Hamill! These games were back in the days where fighter simulators used a joystick. The universe was fun and interesting, with neat enemies and a well-written cast that you came to care about. This movie, on the other hand, stars Freddie Prince Jr. and Matthew Lillard! Ugh! Now, I think it’s worth pointing out that Freddie Prince Jr. found quite a place as the voice of James Vega in Mass Effect 3. But that was with writing and an ADR director who cared. That was NOT seen in this movie. The special effects are beyond dated. The characters are all boring throw-away cliches, with Matthew Lillard spouting some TERRIBLE lines and doing nothing but making an ass of himself. The battle segments were a joke and the enemy effects were so bad that it was embarrassing. I cannot tell you how much I hate this movie. I feel the anger bubbling up inside as I’m sitting here talking about it. Fuck this movie!
5. Street Fighter
What, were, they, thinking?! This is a film that is astoundingly bad. Part of me feels bad that the only good thing about this movie was the portrayal of M. Bison by the late Raul Julia. He tried to make this work, bless his deceased heart. Alas, didn’t. While the game and the anime adaptations focused heavily on Ryu, this movie decided to make Guile the protagonist. Xenophobia, anyone? Every single character in this movie got fucked over from their cool source material. Super Street Fighter II is arguably the greatest fighting game ever made. This franchise has a lot of cool characters, each with a unique back-story and portrayal. This movie is REALLY xenophobic, kind of racist and has fuck-all to do with its source material. I just don’t get how the people who made it honestly believed that they were going to get a positive return on their investment. Not to mention, the icing on the fucking cake – it has Jean-Claude Van Damme as the protagonist. And I might have been willing to forgive all of this if the final product was at least a little entertaining. But it’s not. It’s painful the entire way through. Some people have said that this movie is so bad it’s good, but they are wrong! This movie is one of the worst I have ever seen. Period! Ugh…
4. Resident Evil (franchise)
I am hoping beyond hope that they are done making these movies. While the franchise that this franchise is based on has had its own failings in the last few years, these movies are among the worst cash-grabs that have ever been made. With the first film, it wasn’t as terrible as I thought it would be. It wasn’t a great movie, or even a very good one, but it was pretty decent. A lot of that came from the levels of cool that Michelle Rodriguez’s character brought to the screen. But after this movie came shitty-sequel after shitty-sequel, each one worse than the last. For real, these movies have been getting so terrible that it is almost funny. Oh, wait, it’s not! These movies suck! Not only do they have jack-diddle to do with the games, but they are often plot-less and don’t seem to care about the stories they are telling. Not to mention that not one of them has any kind of survival-horror feel the the older games and Resident Evil 4 had. There is no tension or suspense. Just action, more action and eventually zombies who can run and stuff. Oh, and as an insult to the cool factor that Michelle Rodriguez brought, they brought her back in the latest film and totally fucker her character over. I hate these movies.
3. Super Mario Bros.
I literally don’t get what Hollywood asshole with a 6-figure salary and a 2-digit IQ thought that this movie would work. Not only does it butt-rape the source material, but it doesn’t even seem to acknowledge that the source material existed. I mean, the world of Mario is a happy place filled with little mushroom people, turtle shells, egg-throwing dinosaurs, magic stars and bright colors. There is a tropical island that has cool locations to hang out in and you can even see other galaxies that are pretty cool! Not one thing about the world of that game shouted a 1984 rip-off to you, did it? Well, that’s what the movie thought it meant. It decided to make the film a weird and totally pointless and eerily dark film starring Bob Hoskins as Mario. I like Bob Hoskins, but when you see the charming and fun expression that Mario has, does that nasty-looking douche come to mind? For real, Bob, I like ya, but you are a nasty-looking guy. Just putting that out there. This movie shits on one of the most beloved characters of all time, which is probably the biggest sin a movie can do.
2. Silent Hill: Revelation 3D
Now, I’m going to start my discussion about this movie by saying that I actually don’t hate the original film. The man who directed that movie was actually a fan of the games. Well, the good ones, anyway (the first three and a half). The use of lighting and set designs was actually pretty damn good. Not to mention, the nigh-flawless use of the trademark music of the games that the fans (like me) fell in love with. The creature designs were also pretty neat. Pyramid Head was just as intimidating as I always imagined in the movie as I imagined him to be in the game. The film lacked the symbolism and depth that the games had, but it was still a hell of a lot better than I expected. Revelation 3D (I fucking hate when they put 3D in a title. It’s a cheap gimmick!), on the other hand, was a cash-grab. Pure and simple. Not to mention, a lot like Super Mario Bros., it also shits on a beloved game. Heather Mason is one of my favorite female protagonists. She’s a kid, but in no way a doormat. She is dealing with a lot of shit and doesn’t back down. She faces her darkness in a pretty profound way, with a scene that actually is a very grimacing metaphor for her killing a fetus when the reborn god of the cult of Silent Hill is growing inside of her and she has to get rid of it. This movie, however, turns her into a cowardly damsel who has a bad habit of being saved a lot. There is an underdeveloped romance and a lot of REALLY bad 3D effects. Nothing about this movie works. Nothing. What’s worse – it insults one of my favorite characters. This movie was made to make money. Thankfully, the return was nowhere near what they hoped.
And the worst video game adaptation to film is…
1. Every single Uwe Boll film ever made!
Oh, I cannot tell you my hatred for this German dick-mule. Uwe Boll is called the new Ed Wood, and I genuinely don’t buy that. I am certain that this guy knows that he is making crap. I know this because he exploits German tax loopholes when he makes movies so that, even when the film fails, he makes money. Boll adapts good video games into shit movies, and the Internet’s hatred of him is well-known. The thing I hate him most for is his adaptation of Bloodrayne. A film that also stars Ben Kingsley (for real, what the fuck?! I remember this guy being in Gandhi. Was he just typecast after that, like Malcolm McDowell?) and shits on what could have been a trippy film with a badass redhead kicking some vampire ass with some sick fight choreography and gratuitous gore. Boll doesn’t even try and make good movies. There is something to be said for making a bad movie, but having actually tried to make it good. The Transformers films are pieces of shit, but they are actually trying to be entertaining. It’s just that Michael Bay is a racist and sexist dick who can only make movies about blowing shit up (if only he’d abandon plot. That would make those movies better). Boll, on the other hand, doesn’t give two shits if his movies are good or not, so when he adapts a video game I like to film like that, it just pisses me off more. Fuck this man! Fuck him up hard!
Until next time, a quote,
“I wish I could have played it!” -Ellie
“I never was a big fan of these things.” -Joel, The Last of Us