After Yet Another Video Game Movie Fail, I Still Think Good Video Game Movies Are Possible

After Yet Another Video Game Movie Fail, I Still Think Good Video Game Movies Are Possible

There is no reason why video game movies shouldn't work.
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Yet another video game movie has graced the box office and―lo and behold―it sucks!

Granted, I haven't seen "Tomb Raider" yet, which might completely discredit what I've just said and will say, but judging from the critical consensus (50% on Rotten Tomatoes, 47 on Metacritic), it seems like Hollywood's attempt at another video game adaptation has resulted in yet another stinker. To its credit, it did do better than 2016's "Assassin's Creed" and pretty much every other video game movie ever aside from 1995's "Mortal Kombat."

But while it might not be the worst video game movie ever made, does it represent a milestone for the form? Will this movie be the poster-child for video-game adaptations moving forward? Will it show executives that video game movies are safe to invest in? I highly doubt it.

What frustrates me though, is that there's no reason why video game movies shouldn't work. After all, how much of a difference is there between AAA video games and film? Both have actors, a director, a team of writers, an art department, a soundtrack... even cutscenes employ techniques typically associated with cinema. There's also no doubt that both are MASSIVE production undertakings. Just look at the 12 minute long credits for Uncharted 4.

There isn't as much of a difference between the mediums as one would think. In fact, we could boil down the difference into one word: interactivity. Whereas films are motion pictures, video games are simply interactive motion pictures. That's all there is to it. I think it's a dated notion to think that games need "an objective" or "must be won." We've seen plenty of new games this decade that break convention, redefining what a video game can and can't be. With the advent of TellTale style games and Walking Simulators like "Gone Home" and "What Remains of Edith Finch," the line between games and film is as blurry as ever.

At its core, video games are just like every other narrative and artistic medium―they create stories, they carry themes, and they explore the human condition. Therefore, there isn't anything inherently wrong with the medium that makes it impossible for it to translate onto the big screen. Instead, I believe the problem with video game adaptions lie with a broad public misconception about games.

It's time to stop dismissing video games as nothing more than childish entertainment filled with brainless and over-the-top action. When we make video game movies, stop trying to recapture the parkour in Assassin's Creed or the blood, gore, and action of games like Max Payne or Resident Evil. Focus on stories. Focus on narrative. Because games do that too, and that's the kind of stuff that translates into a good film.

Also, when searching for a game to adapt, stop choosing video gamey and narrative-less source material. Don't go for games like Doom, Angry Birds, Hitman, Need for Speed, Mortal Kombat, Super Mario Bros, or Street Fighter. Why do these movies even exist at all?! They are based on games with barely functioning narratives, and their sole focus is to export good and fun gameplay. Sure they may work as games, but they are destined to fail as movies.

Start picking battles that can be won. Pick narrative-driven games like Bioshock, Mass Effect, and The Last Of Us. These are the types of games that can translate well onto the big screen. They are well-written, engaging, and contain memorable characters.

And when picking a game like Tomb Raider, don't try to recapture in-game firefights by making a pulpy action movie. Instead, capture elements from the source material that are less video-gamey and more filmic. 2013's critically acclaimed video game reboot of Tomb Raider reimagined Lara Croft; it featured an emotional narrative journey, a strong protagonist, and heavy character development. Focus on those elements instead. Because that's what made Tomb Raider 2013 great, and it's also what will make for a great movie too.

Cover Image Credit: YouTube

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To the guy that shot my brother...

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To the guy that shot my brother,

On January 9, 2019 my families entire life changed with one phone call. The phone call that my little brother had been shot in the face, no other details. We didn't need any other details. The woman on the phone who called us in full panic told us where he was so we went, as soon as possible. I don't think it helped that not even 10 min prior I talked to Zach on the phone.. kind of irritated with him, and the ONE TIME I didn't say 'I love you' as we hung up. Could've been the last time we ever spoke.. I remember pulling up to the hospital thinking 'this can't be real' 'it's not our Zach' 'this is just a dream Sarah, WAKE UP' I'd close my eyes really tight just to open them, I was still in the hospital emergency parking lot. I could still hear the ambulance sirens coming. It was all real.

The day our life's changed was definitely a test of faith. A test of how strong we were, as a family. I sat in that waiting room ready to see the damage that has been done to my sweet baby brother. Because at that point we had no idea how lucky he got. That glimpse of seeing Zach will haunt me forever. How helpless I felt in that exact moment frequently wakes me up from these horrific dreams I've been having ever since that day. That is a moment burned into my me and families brain forever.

You always hear about these things in the movies or on the news, a house being shot up, someone shooting another innocent person, not to care if they died on your watch. But we found ourselves on the news.. We have been confined to the hospital since that day. Running on barely any sleep, taking shifts of sleep so we don't make ourselves sick taking care of Zach. Watching him suffer. Undergoing surgeries, to repair the damage you did.

Before I proceed let me tell you a little something about the man you shot.

Zachary Keith Wright. A blonde hair blue eyed boy. Who could potentially be the most annoying human on the planet (possibly coming from his sister). A man who loves his God first, loves his family second. Perfect by no means, but almost perfect to me. A 19 year old who was to graduate high school this month. After graduation he was prepping to leave for Marine boot camp in the summer.. being in the military has been Zach's dream since he could talk. Literally. Running around, playing war with underwear on our heads, and finger guns. Some would say we looked like natural born assassins.. growing up he has been a country boy. Let me tell ya country to the core. He loves this country like he loves his family. He believes in helping people, taking charge in what's right, and never leaving a brother behind. He's lived by that his whole life. Until now....

The day you shot him. The day not only did you change my brothers life, you changed his families life too. The day you almost ripped my brother out of this world... for what? A misunderstanding? Because you've let something take ahold of your life that you can't let go you're willing to kill someone innocent over? Luckily for him, his guardian angels were protecting him in your time of cowardice. There were 3 times that day he should've died, the time you shot him, the time you tried to shoot him again as he stared you directly in the face, (even tho he couldn't talk I know you could read his eyes, and he still intimidated you. That's why you tried to pull the trigger again) and the time he was running out of the house. But he lived. A man who was shot in the face, didn't lay there helpless, didn't scream in agony. That MAN walked to the neighbors to get help. Why? Because he's a MAN, and because he's on this earth for a reason.

It's gonna sound a little strange not only to you, but the audience who is reading this. I must say thank you. Even in this situation, this was the best outcome we could get. He gets to live. He will make a full recovery. He will graduate. And he will go off into the Marines. You united my family together. Closer than ever. Thank you. You tested our faith and brought us closer to our God. Thank you. Because of your moment of weakness, you showed us what prayer could do. Heal anything. Thank you. This was a bump in the road, and a helluva way to kick off our year of 2019. But here we are.. all laying in the hospital. I'm looking around as mom is sleeping in her recliner chair exhasted but still here, Zach his awake playing his xbox all hooked up to machines, fighting to heal and get better. And of course I'm writing this letter to you.

See you in trial,

From the girl whose brother you shot.

'Fight the good fight' - 1 Tim 6:12 🤟🏼💙

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23 Things That ~Barely~ Run Through A Girl's Mind During Her First Workout In, Like, Forever

Why did I do this to myself?

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It's the beginning of the semester and that means half of the students on campus have decided that we are going to go back to the gym after their workout routine fell through last semester. It's been months since we've stepped foot in the gym, but we are ready to attack it and get fit. That is until we get there and start going.

1. How did I get to the gym? Didn't I walk here? That should count as exercise

2. Why am I here?

3. Are these clothes tighter than they were last time?

4. Why is every single machine full? What am I supposed to do?

5. Is everyone looking at me?

6. I can't remember where anything is here

7. Okay, I am going to set this at the easiest level

8. Can I go home yet?

9. Is 3 minutes long enough? No, darn it.

10. How many calories have I burned? Only 10 are you kidding me!

11. Why is everyone else here going so hard? I look like a slacker

12. I am so sweaty right now

13. Maybe I should get a smoothie as a reward for working out

14. I am literally dying right now. I am about to drop dead

15. Only 5 more minutes to go. I've got this!

16. I don't got this

17. Why do people come here every day?

18. Last minute I'm going to go so hard right now

19. Just kidding that two seconds was good enough. I'm going to cool down for the last 58

20. Hallelujah, praise Jesus, I am done!

21. I am so tired

22. My body is so sore

23. I can't believe I have to walk home now. I've already done my exercising for the day

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