Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Calm Down Wolverine

I knew wolverine was going to suck! But I saw it anyway. If watching a grown man yell and run around slashing things was all it took to excite me, then I probably would have praised spiderman 3. But when they come out with spiderman 4, I will be there. When they do the new robocop, I will be one of the first in line. When George Lucas dies, and someone talented gets the rights to do some amazing star wars movies, future me will take my kid out of school so that he can recover from a good midnight show. I go because I love the characters. Good writing or bad, I love the characters, and the possibility of crap is worth it because not having more is so much worse. And maybe, just maybe, I will be among the first to experience a fresh vision that will renew my love for the character, and bring new members into the club. Dark knight, the new hulk, Jason vorhees, and now, star trek.

I could go on and on about old characters that are getting makeovers so that new generations will realize that all the cool stuff happened long before they were born. Finally Hollywood has learned that their new ideas suck. Get the old ones back out and make them the way you couldn't years ago. I love the fresh look of transformers and terminator, but I find myself excited about other classics that I wasn't previously a fan. I don't know squat about G I Joe, but it looks badass. I thought speed racer was the worst cartoon ever, but the movie was awesome And that is what brings me to star trek. I have always enjoyed the show and movies, but was never a die hard fan. But I was curious to find out if a new vision would change that. This will be the first star trek movie I will own and I can't wait for a sequel.

Remakes are hard. It is impossible to please everyone, especially with years of material and different story lines to choose from. But I think they did it brilliantly. By saying the rift in time created a new reality, they say that everything Trekkies know and love is true, but now this is also true. The actors can respect the characters, but make them their own. I think it is clever and respectful of the source material. But more importantly it is a great movie, with lovable characters, and a well written story.

So while wolverine is at the bar, shamefully drinking so that he can remember why he made such a bad movie, I will be looking forward to hanging out with classic characters, and some new favs. May they all go where they haven't gone before.


Chris W said...

Glad to see so many other people agree with my assesments of WOLVERINE and STAR TREK. I must disagree on one point though. Not all of the new Hollywood ideas suck. If that were the case we wouldn't get stuff like the brilliant stuff Pixar puts out. Also as a writer / film maker, trying to break into the industry I'd like to think I've got some pretty good ideas up my sleeves as well. Where the issue lies is that Hollywood seems to have lost their sense of taste and their pioneering spirit. While I'm not vehnemently opposed to remakes and reboots like some people are the industry is begining to rely on them a little too much. I mean without fresh and original ideas what are they going to remake 20 years from now?

FilmNinja said...

TRUE - my wording was a bit poor. I guess it's better to say that when new ideas aren't as fresh as you'd like, it's nice to see people go back to basics. I'm sure you've got many good ideas, but it's hard to come up with something that is truly original when so much as been done with story telling, crazy character development, and stunts. My argument is more that you don't have to reinvent the wheel everytime you want to take someone somewhere . . . just make it a fun ride that people will want to enjoy again and again.

Adam said...

FilmNinja strikes back!

I have to say that I agree with Chris on this one. I don't think that all new ideas are crap, although I read your response and now understand more of what you were getting at originally. That said, I get tired of seeing unoriginal content too. Of course, it's pretty hard to come up with something completely new, since the movies have been around for over 100 years, and a lot of ground's already been broken. Sometimes, I actually look at a film that's being released and think to myself, "How could a studio put YOU out? How could they actually think that you had a good script? Don't your parents have ANY self-respect?" It's so sad to see a movie get phoned in. A movie is such a terrible thing to waste . . .

Chris, I'm actually not categorically opposed to reboots and remakes. For example, I absolutely loved "Casino Royale." It was and is still probably the best action movie I've seen in several years. I also find the new Batman films enjoyable, although significantly overrated. Where a problem arises for me is when I feel the reboot is unnecessary or poorly done. For example, I'm not interested in seeing "The Incredible Hulk." Though it will probably shock some readers, I liked Ang Lee's "Hulk." While I would be interested in seeing a sequel to that film, the new one . . . not so much. As for the current sticking point, I still feel that "Star Trek" is a bad film on a number of levels. I agree that the franchise needed a shot in the arm, but I really don't think that this was the way to do it.

Here's another question, do you guys think that there's a limit to what an audience can take as far as original content in a film? I mean, when a film tries to re-invent the wheel and really be audacious, sometimes it loses out on an audience. "Memento," for example, only made $25.5 million here in the U.S. "Fight Club" only made $37 million domestically. A significant percentage people would probably agree that those films are wonderfully original and would like to see more like them. So, back to my original question: do you guys think that studios hold themselves back because they think (possibly with good reason) that the more original they get, the less chance they have of a big return on their investment?

Anonymous said...

Chris W., did you ever review Wolverine on here since I don't remember it. Would love to hear your thoughts on it if you haven't.

Adam- I think it all comes down to dollars and cents as cynical and cliched as that answer may be which is why Hollywood seems to be overreliant on sequels, remakes, and adaptations at the moment.

Although like Filmninja said I'm glad to see that in some cases they are returning to the source material now and hope its a trend that continues into the 2010's!

FilmNinja said...

Adam - I think it's more that the general audience just can't handle the more COMPLICATED story lines or the more GRAPHIC material.

Hollywood has their statistics, they know what the general audience "wants," and that's what we get.

And when the major audience is those texting in their votes, you get the wrong American Idol, and really stupid movies . . . because it's funny!