Video Game Movies

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Video Game Movies

Postby BigOldCar » April 14th, 2007, 12:57 pm

Hello, Forum Posters:

I had sent the following in an email, and David suggested that I post it in the forums to see what anyone else had to say.  Have at it!

I saw the videogame movies page on your site.  I must say, you were generous with the Resident Evil movies, which I think were beyond horrible.  I mean, c'mon: soldiers, machine guns, zombies.  How do you get that wrong?!  But they did...
Ah, but I must agree that Mortal Kombat was a colorful, fun film.  I don't even like fighter games (though brawlers are a blast) and I enjoyed MK.  Annihilation--which I caught on TV--suh-diddly-ucked.
Okay, some VG films that were not included:
The Wizard: Not based on a specific game, and really just part of the marketing campaign for the release of Super Mario 3 (I think), this film featured Fred Savage mentoring some idiot savant who could somehow magically intuit warp zones in games he's never played before.  Eecchh.  I'd rather hang with that deaf, dumb and blind kid.  He sure plays a mean pinball.
Ninja Turtles:  Maybe this doesn't count, either, since the Turtles game was based on the cartoon that was based on the comic... but the film was okay.  In its way.
Double Dragon:  If you haven't seen this one, I envy you.  It was on TV and I caught some of it.  God, was it horrible.  The brothers live in what's supposed to be a semi-totalitarian futuristic LA, and they spend their time going around striking kung-fu poses in half-battles with people you don't care about.  They have a 70's Ford station wagon with a giant paper-machiet jet engine on top. 
Super Mario Brothers:  Again, why did they do this?  Maybe the creators were inspired by the success of Little Shop of Horrors and decided to ride the wave of Nintendo popularity.  I don't know.  But, whatever; it was just plain lame.
Alien vs. Predator:  It had Aliens and it had Predators, and stuck in the middle were some humans who get killed a lot.  Summer sci-fi schlock, but it was actually okay for what it was... until the stupid-@ss ending, when one of the humans somehow magically determines that we can get the Predators to identify with us (no dreadlocks required!) and then they'll be our buddies.  Some kind of warrior code nonsense that even Worf would turn up his nose at.  Put it aside; the film was an all right action matinee kind of film.
Tron:  Tron is bad-@ss.  A computer programmer gets hit by lightning (or some bulls#it) and is transported to the world of electrons, where he gets to hang out with video game characters as they engage in gladiatorial combat for the pleasure of the all-powerful User.  And it spawned the kick-ass game Discs of Tron, a successor to the original game Tron (which was not nearly as good).  Points just for that.
Stargate:  Oh, wait, this had nothing to do with Defender.  Still is cool, though.  (Although there was a NewsRadio episode that revolved around Stargate Defender.  Like most NewsRadio episodes, it was great.)
Cloak and Dagger:  When I was a kid, this movie was just sooooooooooooooo cool.  Cooler than Space Camp.  Cooler than the GI Joe movie.  Cooler than a marathon of You Can't Do That On Television.  So what if the game was actually a re-labeled Agent X?
Wargames:  =Missile Command?  No?  Surely there must have been some inspiration.  Okay, how about movies based on children's games?  This one had TicTacToe in it!  Still no sale?  All right, fine.
The Last Starfighter: Okay, so they never finished making the game.  It never became available even though they said it would.  And the film's effects were not so special.  Everyone loves The Last Starfighter, everyone!  And didn't we all like to imagine that if we got good enough at our favorite game, that maybe--just maybe--those skills would somehow be called upon to allow us to save the world?  The last Starfighter is...
Well, there were like three in there worth considering.  The rest was, I guess, just me taking time out of your day.  Now we're even!  (I really do enjoy your site.)
[Name changed to protect the guilty]


Video Game Movies

Postby Alienblue » April 14th, 2007, 1:51 pm

I loved TRON and WARGAMES,too. And for the record the Colecovision WARGAMES was pretty good too for the time.

I am one of the few that Loved STREET FIGHTER the movie. Ok, Blanka sucked but Cammy and Chun li were HOT, Ryu and Ken were funny and I thought it did wonderfully in what must have been a mish-masshed attempt to bring ALL those charcters to life!

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Video Game Movies

Postby m0zart1 » April 14th, 2007, 2:20 pm

The Wizard was a fun movie for the time, even though they greatly exaggerated the amount of genius it took to beat video games.

Clock and Dagger wasn't based directly on the video game.  It was based on the same thing the video game was based on -- a recurring Mad Magazine comic.

You left out Silent Hill.  I thought it was an average movie.  One thing that Silent Hill proved to me is that a video game can tell a MUCH deeper story than a movie.  Even with the scaled down (and very altered) version of the story the movie tried to tell, it still had to have a sudden exposition in the middle of the movie, telling everyone the basic storyline in a soliloquy from the mouth of the devil child while simultaneously trying to blind the audience with a bright white screen.  This whole thing lasted for like five to ten minutes.  It was quite absurd.

When I played Silent Hill, I admit it took me a few playthroughs before I put all the pieces together and figured out all that had happened, but still, it told its basic story in a much more engrossing, and indeed much more frightening way than the movie did.

Don't get the wrong here -- the movie's visual art direction was spot-on, but it takes more than a good visual art direction to make a good movie.  The original game told its story much better with some really crude graphics, after all.


Video Game Movies

Postby BigOldCar » April 14th, 2007, 3:11 pm

Speaking of WarGames, did anybody ever play DefCon 5 on the C=64?  That was the closest experience one could have to hacking the Pentagon and starting--then averting--World War III.  Great game, though it did take some patience and a manual to do everything that needed to be done.

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Joined: December 31st, 1969, 7:00 pm

Video Game Movies

Postby Sudz1 » April 14th, 2007, 3:55 pm

How could you forget - MORTAL COMBAT!  Based on the video game or not, this movie rocked in a campy martial-arts flick kind of way.  The first one of course, the second was just horrible and I couldn't believe that they killed off Johnny Cage right at the begining!! WTF?!?
Tron was a great movie for it's time but I have to tell you, I rented it recently from Blockbuster to watch again and it has NOT held up well over time.  The special effects are embarrassing and the acting is unbelieveably bad.   Wargames to me is still as great as it was when first released.
Speaking of Wargames, for those of you who play PC games there a great indie-developed game called "DEFCON" that I HIGHLY recommend you check out.  The demo is free, and if you want to purchase the full game it's only $19.50 (to direct download... if you want the full retail package it's $29.25).  Anyway, remember that big screen in NORAD that showed the US and Soviet Union flinging missles at each other in Wargames?  It's like that :-) 
Check it out:


Video Game Movies

Postby CablePirate » April 14th, 2007, 5:38 pm

Ummm...  Not only was Mortal Kombat mentioned on the original page, which is here by the way: ,

the original poster referenced VGC's review of it in the second paragraph of his post.

And m0zart, I believe you're thinking of Spy vs. Spy, which is an entirely separate animal from Cloak and Dagger / Agent X.  Interesting thing about that movie, they hadn't finished the port of the arcade game for the 5200, so they piped the arcade machine's video into a monitor with a 5200 sitting in front of it.  Read more here.

Arcade machine here and here.

Oh, and Wargames featured Matthew Broderick playing Galaga, so there's a cool tie-in.

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Video Game Movies

Postby m0zart1 » April 14th, 2007, 5:47 pm

[QUOTE=CablePirate]And m0zart, I believe you're thinking of Spy vs. Spy, which is an entirely separate animal from Cloak and Dagger / Agent X.[/QUOTE]

Ah yes, you are correct.  Thanks for pointing that out.  Actually, thanks to your correct, I think I remember the Cloak and Dagger movie.  It had that ET kid in it, and Dabney Coleman playing his father and his imaginary Government spy friend.

It took place in San Antonio, I believe.  About three weeks ago I had a friend visiting from Washington, and we drove to San Antonio and rode on one of the tourist boats over the river walk.  Remembering this now, I am reminded of that old couple on the same river boat service that pretended to try to help the young ET-boy-protagonist, and turned out to be the double agents he was supposed to be avoiding.

Alright, I feel very old now.


Video Game Movies

Postby CablePirate » April 14th, 2007, 6:33 pm

Does anyone watch Futurama?  There's an episode where Fry finds out his bank account from the '90s has appreciated in interest to the point where he's now a millionaire.  He then takes the money and "Picks [his] life up right where [he] left off" by buying an old TV, VCR and a stack of VHS tapes with reruns of sitcoms from the '80s.  I bring this up because that's exactly how I feel when I spend my rainy weekend days sitting in front of the TV in my bedroom playing my arcade collection discs on my old Playstation.  Pac-Man, Spy-Hunter, Road-Blasters, Galaga, Bosconian... and I only mention all this because of m0zart's comment about feeling old.

(in my best old-man voice): "When I was your age, we didn't have arcade-perfect emulations in our bedrooms!  We had 8-bit machines that ran off cartridges, and you had to blow into them to get them to work right!  And the games only slightly resembled their arcade counterparts!  Arcades?  They were these dark corners in shopping malls where you'd take your allowance money and convert it to quarters so you could feed them into these seven-foot machines that each only played one game, and your quarter would allow you to play that game for, on average, about three minutes.  And when you'd spent all your money, a surly attendant would come over and tell you to leave because the sign on the wall said "No Loitering," and if you didn't either come up with more money or leave, he'd call the security guard.  And we liked it!  We loved it!  Meah, you kids these days are spoiled!"

Seriously, they don't know how good they've got it.


Video Game Movies

Postby McTom » April 18th, 2007, 4:25 am

haven't seen any of those... luckily

anyway, did anyone ever experience Dragon's Lair 3 on DVD? Can someone tell me how it works (IF it works)?

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