Last week, The Hollywood Reporter ran THIS story saying that producers Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Gigi Pritzker are in the process of bringing the classic arcade game Space Invaders to the big screen, the game where you move a thing back and forth and shoot aliens as they approach your base.
There are almost no words. I say “almost,” of course, because I’m probably going to use a shit load of them. This is just another in a heartbreakingly long line of movies being produced based on some bit of 80s nostalgia. A couple of weeks ago, I half-jokingly posted this ARTICLE of six movie ideas based on cartoons based on toys, but who the hell needed the cartoons? Take the most basic of games or children’s amusement and turn it into a big-budget action movie. Need I remind all of you that they’re actually in the process of making a movie based on BATTLESHIP? But I guess the idea of just having two opposing fleets was too boring, so they made one of them alien. Aliens that invade the planet and decide to take over the oceans. The fuck?
Hollywood is dead set on making a hit, and for some reason they think the only way to make a hit is to have name recognition. In the last 3 years, 96% of all films given a wide release have been based on some known property, whether it be a sequel, remake, reboot, or adaptation. 96%. It boggles the mind. When one thinks that something like Inception even got made is an achievement, even if it was only because Nolan could cash in on his Batman success. In order to get new work produced, one needs to make something that already exists.
It’s not like video game movies are a brand new thing. The likes of Super Mario Bros., Tomb Raider, and Resident Evil have all gotten the big screen treatment, to varying degrees of success. The one thing can be said for all of them, though, is that they’ve been shitty. IMDb lists the video game movie with the highest user-rating as Silent Hill at 6.5 percent. The ones that did the best financially were ones that were based on a game that was hot at the moment, striking while the iron was hot. They’re coming out with a film version of Uncharted, which is at least big shit right now, and at least has a storyline. Space Invaders is literally just a repetitive, don’t-die style of game that was made in 1978! Hardy on anyone’s list of big-name properties at the moment.
These movies do make money and as long as they get your $12, they’ll make whatever stupid piece of shit they think you’ll pay for. Transformers 3 has now made over $200 Million. Apparently, all we need to be interested in seeing it is a name we’ve heard of. By that token, I’m going to write treatments for movie versions of Galaga, Pitfall, Tetris, and of course Pong.
In short, Hollywood thinks we’re idiots, and I don’t think they’re entirely wrong.
-Kanderson will be busy playing “Asteroids” and live-TWEETING it.