#1 Posted by JazGalaxy (1638 posts) -

I remember very vividly, the thrill that surged through my body during the opening minutes of the Kevin Smith film Mall Rats.  The camera sweeps around the dingy basement of the main characters basement apartment to reveal him playing a Sega Genesis.  
The main character of a MOVIE was playing a VIDEO GAME. And not one of those stupid TV scenes where the kid waggles at the controls as though he never touched a game before in his life while the visuals of some popular game flashed alongside the sound of an entirely different popular game. This felt legitimate. 
And at the core of it, that's what it was always about. Legitimacy. The thing that outsider kids did alone in their basements that wasn't masturbation was suddenly represented on screen for the world to see. And maybe, just maybe, it was even seen as cool. 
And that was just someone playing a game in a live action movie. The dream of actually having a live action representation of real GAMES was something one dare not even dream of. If one did, the dream would be that one might, if they were lucky, actually see the game world that they had been forced to use copious amounts of imagination to make real would be presented larger than life on a movie screen. Gamers might be able to suddenly explore more of the game worlds than they had ever thought possible before. Characters would be more fully realized. And more than that, people who had never had the opportunity to be exposed to some of the greatest fiction of the world would finally get to see it for the first time. 
And not just movies,  the same went for comic books. I remember distinctly reading through Xmen's Age of Apocalypse and thinking how amazing it would be to see that world presented on the big screen in all it's amazing glory. 
But that was 15 years ago and a lot has changed. 
Where i used to sit and read through Avengers comic books thinking that the idea that there could ever be an avengers movie was insane, we now live in a world where not only does an avengers movie exist, everyone has seen it and everyone loved it. Everyone walks around with avengers tshirts. We live in a post-nerd world. 
So why do we still keep wishing for videogame movies? 
Technology in games has equaled if not surpassed the technology use to create movies. Where we used to long for movie versions of films so that we could see a more fully realized game world, games now present worlds that are an infinite magnitude more complex than what can be shown in a film. Spending 3 hours in middle earth is nothing compared to the breadth of experiencing hundreds of hours traversing and interacting with Skyrim. 
So, again, why do we still keep wishing for videogame movies? 
or is it still about legitimacy? 
As gamer award shows come packed to the gills with hollywood celebrities who have nothing to do with gaming, and games continue to try to pattern themselves off of hollywood success stories, are games still attempting to be accepted by the cool kids? Are gamers still trying to get a date with the cheerleader? 
Aren't we past that point? 
Where I remember so many people in my youth scoffing at the concept of a Super Mario Brothers movie and asking "who would want to see that? Videogames are too inferior to movies to make a decent experience" I find myself in 2013 saying "They're going to make a Half Life movie? Who would want to see that? Movies are too inferior to games to make a decent experience"

#2 Edited by Hunter5024 (6448 posts) -

I am pretty much share your opinion entirely. For comic books and novels, adaptations make sense because those worlds are somewhat dependent on your imagination, so bringing those worlds to life can be a fascinating experiment that allows you to live out te fantasy in your head. This may also have been true of video games from a decade or two ago, but the technology caught up. A video game has the ability to do all of the things a movie does, and more, so who cares?

It all ties back into the perception that movies are the dominant medium. They make the most money, and they reach the widest audience, so therefore trying to get into that business probably seems like a solid investment. The problem with movies though, is that they require the least investment from the audience of any other medium. A book requires you to create the world in your head, a comic requires you to fill the space between the panels, and a video game requires you to experience the life of the protagonist. A movie simply requires sitting and watching a screen, so inevitably, something is lost in the translation.

#3 Posted by Sweetz (677 posts) -

I don't think it was ever about legitimacy, I think it's that once most people are fans of something, they want to consume more content related to it regardless of its form or whether it even makes sense. It's the same reason why movie-licensed video games used to sell well in spite of their generally low quality before the video game market got older and became a bit more savvy. The same reason why there are Halo action figures and World of Warcraft megablocks bought buy teens and adults who wouldn't otherwise be buying those sorts of toys.

Personally I've never wanted to see a game story retold in the movie. I mean what's the point to see a non-interactive retelling of the same plot? However, I think a movie that takes place in the same universe as a game, but tells its own completely separate story can work - just like the best movie licensed video games are ones that tell their own story as a prequel/side-story (like the Chronicles of Riddick game or Tron 2.0). The problem is that most game universes are too shallow or contrived to support a good film. The one exception IMHO being Mass Effect. They've laid a nice foundation for a universe that could make for a good movie. Only problem is that at a base level it's pretty similar to Star Trek except a bit more militaristic - but with the last several Star Trek movies being all about fighting, it's pretty much already there; so any movie they make would likely be perceived as too derivative.

#4 Posted by frankfartmouth (1048 posts) -

I don't necessarily care about games being legitimized by Hollywood, but at the same time, I don't want to see them turned into nothing but abject embarrassments, which is so far what they've been.

The thing that kills me about it is that I know there's a way to do it right. Games just aren't being adapted properly. Nobody's trying to convey the mystery, exploration and imagination behind some of the most enduring franchises, they just turn them into simplistic action movies with a few obligatory references and some cookie cutter characters and call it a day. That pisses me off. Not because I'm an outcast and want people to understand my weird little hobby, but because they're taking good source material and hacking it up.

But I'm sure the upcoming Need for Speed movie will take care of it.