Top 5 Video Game Movies
Cos it's a hit and miss genre...
Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within
At 137 million dollars, Spirits Within has a dubious honour. Titled “the most expensive animated film ever made,” Square Pictures blew the budget with this stylish sci-fi and paid the price when it bombed. Set in a world plagued by ghosts, it tells the tale of Aki Ross, who is trying to stop them by collecting the eight “spirits.” It’s shaky stuff. The pacing is uneven, and undermined by a story that grows increasingly convoluted. On the positive side, it’s sex for your eyes. The photo-realistic animation is smooth and rich, and pops eyebrows even now. As eye candy goes, it’s unbeatable.
Lara Croft: Tomb Raider
Tomb Raider was famous for three things: jumping, shooting, and the sight of teenagers drooling over pixels. The movie isn’t much different. There’s a lot of jumping, lots of shooting and, thanks to the buxom Mrs Pitt, more jiggles than ever before. Now don’t get us wrong; this is far from good writing. Essentially Indiana Jones with boobs and bots - Lara versus the Illuminati - in a harebrained quest for a magic rock. As a plot, it’s pretty thin. As a movie, it’s action mixed with awkward dialogue and a schoolboy attempt at exposition. But it is Angelina Jolie in shorts with guns. Shooting the face off a living statue. That kind of thing is difficult to hate.
It’s ironic that Resident Evil is about a virus, considering how the movie has multiplied. Whilst the franchise may be a laughable plague, the original was honest, limb-shuffling fun, starring Milla Jovovich as death in a dress. Story-wise, it’s tried and tested. An underground laboratory lets loose a virus and soldiers are sent in to clean up the mess. Brains are busted. Flesh is torn. Zombie Rottweilers get kicked through windows, courtesy of Milla and some slick martial arts. It isn’t without fault. There’s a vague “whodunnit” subplot and an anti-corporate message that’s a tad hypocritical. We’d say ‘rocks and glasshouses’ to Constantin Films.
Are you afraid of the dark? Do you flinch at sirens, shadows, and the sight of men in masks? Then you’ve probably played Silent Hill. While the adaptation is nowhere near as scary as the game - being unsubtle, clunky and just a bit dense - it still retains that Silent Hill spirit (or ghost if you will). The story is a horror movie cliché. A mother loses her daughter in a mist-soaked town, and discovers it’s full of demons. Whilst the plot is predictable, the execution is gruesomely fresh. The monsters are hideous, bent, skinned and feral, and the oppressive atmosphere beats you to your knees. Also, with witch burnings and barbed wire rape, it rates an 8 on the gross scale. A nice bonus.
Super Mario Bros
Everyone knows Mario. He’s short, he’s Italian and he fixes plumbing. Then came 1993. Mario was transformed into a grouchy Bob Hoskins, as the Mushroom Kingdom took a definite, dystopian turn for the worse. On paper it’s the story we know and love: two plumbers are sucked into a parallel dimension, fight monsters and pinch the princess from her castle. On film it’s much different. The kingdom is a hell-pit of misery and murk, choked by fungus and an oppressive dictator. Yoshi is a puppet. Toad is a dinosaur. Everyone’s got flame-throwers and a dodgy accent, whilst Dennis Hopper has developed a mohawk. Honestly it’s idiotic, but fun.