Spring is here, and Hollywood FX departments are frantically putting the finishing touches to this year’s output of summer blockbusters. Amongst this year’s crowd pleasing batch of avenging superheroes, space jockeys and young girls kicking bottom in future dystopias comes the inevitable toy tie in movie… This year it’s the turn of the boardgame Battleship to get a tinseltown makeover.
Cunningly entitled Battleship, the film veers off almost immediately from the game – for a start, none of the main characters end up crying, having lost all the pieces from the travel edition down the back seat of the car. Instead, director Peter Berg re-imagines the sheer tedium of rainy holidays shouting “E4, miss, A2, hit” etc into a huge running battle with aliens on the high seas. To be fair, Berg seems to have his head screwed on when it comes to the project – he’s been allowed to do what he wants in order to make a light popcorn actioner and been given extra cash from games giant Hasbro in the process. He’s not even been forced to add any reference to Battleship: The Game, but says that he’s slipped a few one liners in for sheer audience amusement.
Bearing all this in mind, and putting on my HB/NW hat, I figured that I would offer Hollywood some further ideas based on popular games, in the hope that they will give me a call and bung money and fame in my direction. Here’s my top ten tabletop based treats for next summer…
Pop Up Pirate
Torture porn/Disney crossover helmed by Saw‘s James Wan. Jack Sparrow is shoved in a barrel of TNT and repeatedly stabbed with blunt swords until he can take no more – at which point the barrel will explode, throwing Jack to his doom. The whole hour and a half is in retaliation for Pirates of the Caribbean 4.
Keanu Reeves must pull tiny pins out of a tube without any balls falling through it, or the bus that he is riding in will explode! Contains a delightful scene in which Dennis Hopper shouts “Pop quiz Hotshot! One of my balls has gone nuclear! What’ll you do ? WHAT’LL YOU DO ?”
To be fair, this has pretty much been done already with Oliver Stone’s Wall Street. It’s a shame that the producers didn’t court some extra cash from Hasbro by having Gordon Gekko ride around in a shoe. The ending could have been souped up too, with Bud Fox going to jail, at which point we fade as he frantically attempts to roll a six…
Political satire. British Chancellor George Osborne tries to connect the destruction of public sector pay, the extra financial burden on pensioners, the glorification of the super rich and the taxation of hot pasties with sound economic judgement. To be honest, this concept might stretch the credulity of the moviegoing audience to breaking point as it’s hard to imagine George Osborne managing to count to four in the first place.
Go for Broke (aka The Producers)
Film of the boardgame that reflects the film adapted from the stageplay based on the film regarding a play. Now in 3D.
Existential, angst ridden drama in which Terry plays cards on the office computer, only to realise an hour and a half later that those documents for accounts aren’t going to write themselves.
Dungeons and Dragons
This is another game title that’s already been exploited but it needs to be looked at again… Starring genre favourites Tom Baker, Richard O’Brien and that bloke who used to do toddler telly, Dungeons and Dragons: The Movie should have been a surefire winner. Instead it’s a refund waiting to happen in a DVD box. I returned my copy to a local store and got my money back under the trades descriptions act. I kid you not – I told the cashier that D+D:M was being advertised as a ‘Movie’, whereas, upon playing the DVD, I could only find a bunch of disjointed moving pictures with no meaning or sense to them. I suggest we redo the movie with potatoes and call it modern art. Anything would be an improvement on what was made.
Another remake – this time of a musical. Barbara Dixon and Elaine Page repeatedly sing I know him so Well while being trampled by a knight on horseback…
…for two hours.
I’m not a fan of musicals.
A frustrating film with a plot that takes hours to set up, only to collapse unexpectedly during the third act – ruining the whole experience. Directed by M. Knight Shyamalan.
Drama – High flying Hollywood movie executives must decide whether to back yet more sequels, franchise tie-ins and lowest common denominator, homogeneous pap, or risk doing something with a bit more substance. A tragedy that never seems to end.
I’m off to L.A.now to pitch these to the suits…
See you at the cinema or, if the above have anything to go by, see you direct to DVD!
© Nova Amiko and The Has Been Who Never Was 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Nova Amiko and The Has Been Who Never Was with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.