5 Video Game Formats That Would've Saved Famously Bad Movies

Sometimes movies just don't work as movies. Instead of being an entertaining piece of cinema, Batman V Superman became a PSA for the dangers of making movies at all. The Witch is better as anti-time-travel propaganda. And the script of God's Not Dead 2 has replaced the Bible in most Southern states. None of these work as movies, but they would work well as other things.

There are also a few movies that would really benefit from being video games. A more interactive medium would improve them, mutating their shortcomings into aspects that are nearly likable. These are movies that would work way better if you could buy useless DLC for them after a few months.

#5. The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen

20th Century Fox

Back when it was a more standard comic that told the tales of classic literary heroes fighting classic literary villains, and before Alan Moore killed off the main character with lightning from a demon's dick ...

Alan Moore/Kevin O'Neill

... The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen was made into a movie. Sucking all the fun out of its premise, the movie attempted to introduce famous characters, give them backstory, and lay out a logical explanation for why they're working together. If you've ever watched Van Helsing and wondered to yourself, "What would this be like if I died during it?" The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen would be the hell that you'd go to.

Some movies are called "breathless roller coaster rides," and League certainly is breathless, but only because it seems like you're having plot points quickly and clumsily yelled at you from someone riding on a roller coaster. "THERE'S AN OLD GUY. HE'S IMPORTANT. GOT IT? AAAAAHHHHH. MR. HYDE IS AN APE THING, GOT IT? AAAHHHHHHH. HERE'S A SHIP, GOT IT? AAAAAHHHHH. THIS IS TOM SAWYER. GOT IT? YOU READ BOOKS, RIGHT? AAAAAAAHHHHH. MORIARTY. GOT IT? CREDITS. BYE." When you're trying to combine a roaring action movie with 200 years' worth of literature history, there is a clash of interests.

20th Century Fox
I'm using the word "interests" in the absolute broadest sense of the word.

Why It Would Make A Great Video Game:

Marvel: Ultimate Alliance is an action game with RPG elements. You can choose from a variety of Marvel heroes and use them to beat up whatever robots and foot soldiers Doctor Doom throws your way. The game also assumes that you know who Captain America is, so it doesn't give you any convoluted monologues or weird backstory flashbacks. The people behind Marvel: Ultimate Alliance knew that devoting 10 minutes to a "Before I was Spider-Man, I was a 90-pound geek and the only person that didn't punch me was my uncle" explanation was a waste of time. Any second not spent making robot widows was a second that didn't really matter.

This approach to a League video game would improve it by leaps and bounds. The best parts of the League movie are when it feels the most like a video game anyway, with Mr. Hyde using melee attacks against groups of henchmen:

20th Century Fox

And Nemo activating his special sword technique abilities when surrounded by enemies:

20th Century Fox

Trusting that the audience knows who these people are, even if they don't, is way more entertaining than going the Batman route and constantly re-explaining their origins every other scene.

The Invisible Man will get a few lines of dialogue that he repeats during combat (probably "Haha! Try and find me!" and "Now you see me! Now you don't!"), but the story would benefit way more from that mindless fun than it would from pulling the player aside with the introduction of every new character to lecture them about why this person is important. It's the League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen. They're the Avengers of sophomore English. And no matter what time period they come from, a 70-30 ratio of adventuring to info dumping is the minimum requirement.

#4. John Carter

Walt Disney

Before Star Wars was Disney's Star Wars, John Carter was Disney's Star Wars. Based on the book series by Edgar Rice Burroughs, it was a bland effort that could never make up its mind about how nerdy and referential it wanted to be. Also, since it came after a bunch of films that were inspired by the original John Carter books, it felt uninspired. What could've been a unique, involving experience was a generic Non Star Wars Space Fantasy #38, made almost specifically to have a two-second clip of it shown during that "EVERYTHING IS BETTER ON BLU-RAY" montage at the beginning of every DVD and for nothing else.

Why It Would Make A Great Video Game:

I'm sure that John Carter would've been retroactively improved had we gotten the planned trilogy and seen where the mythology was going to go, but they could've skipped all that by just making a Fallout 4-esque game with it. League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen has a rich history, but you can grasp its central concept without knowing about all of it. John Carter is not as familiar to people. If you asked a person on the street who he is, they'd probably tell you that he was the second president, or a co-worker who still hasn't paid back that 20 bucks that they loaned him. So a giant game where you can either choose a direct path or spend hours creeping into every cavern on Mars, looking through chests for extraneous notes and rusty weapons, would benefit them. If they're like me, they need to scratch the familiar itch of wanting excellent video game adaptations of early-1900s pulp novels.

Dell
I need it. I need it bad.

A John Carter Fallout wouldn't force the narrative into something condensed and forgettable. You could go balls-out fantasy and never once have to worry about how it's going to tie into marketing toys and T-shirts or force-feeding it that "Disney" feeling. Something the size of War And Peace is found every time you search through a raider's butthole in Fallout 4, so you'd have no trouble fitting a lot of iconic stuff from the 10-plus book series in, all while adding side quests and challenges that seem appropriate. Giving people the chance to piece together the John Carter universe through cut scenes, dialogue, and various materials is superior to shaving all of the weirdness off of it to create a limited run of Disney films. John Carter didn't have to be Not Star Wars Until We Get Another Star Wars. It could've been much more respectable.

#3. Nacho Libre

Paramount Pictures

Wrestling movies, in general, don't work, because wrestling exists outside of our reality. At least that's what professional wrestling needs us to believe. There's no logical reason why Bray Wyatt, a swamp cult leader that looks like a plot twist in a camp slasher flick, has to become a wrestler to accomplish his goals. He just is one, appearing out of a portal at the top of the stage to do his job and then disappear. Wrestling movies, unless they're like The Wrestler, don't work because it shows normal people being forced to interact with the fake pro-wrestling world. The two realities clash and threaten to rip the fabric of time and space. Also, the movies usually suck.

Nacho Libre is, by far, the best wrestling movie ever made that falls under the wrestling movie subgenre "Normal Dude Becomes A Wrestler." That subgenre also includes Ready To Rumble, which was both a comedy and wrestling's interpretation of the five stages of grief, and the two movies share one huge weakness: In their attempts to make wrestling look good, they make it look terrible. There's no way to believe that Jack Black is suddenly better than every luchador in the country if it's a real sport, and if it isn't a real sport, then where are the stakes? Wrestling doesn't work if it has to coexist with real life.

Paramount Pictures
Luchadon't.

Why It Would Make A Great Video Game:

Since Ready To Rumble is based on a real company, WCW, that went under because it's hard to tell Hulk Hogan no when he asks, "Could I have all the money and all the power?" Nacho Libre is the alternative when it comes to my pitch: an open-world wrestling game.

For it to work, wrestling has to be the center of the universe. It has to be like Dethklok in Metalocalypse: the most popular thing that is, ever was, and ever will be. WWE has released a ton of wrestling games, but any time they have stuff take place in a land outside of the ring, it always comes back to wrestling -- "Throw these police officers and construction workers to their death before they ruin the ring!" and shit like that:

Nacho Libre, taking place in some colorful city where everything revolves around wrestling, would be full of that. Conflicts would be settled using wrestling moves, and the interspersed matches with "bosses" would progress the storyline. At no point would there be another "real" world that you could escape to. Sure, other characters would have non-wrestling jobs, but they'd be very aware that "You brought a headlock to a suplex fight, boy" battles could break out at any time. Also, lucha libre is less serious than American wrestling, less based around slams and submission holds, and more based around "Holy shit, that dude did four flips in the air and turned it into an armbar." It's a dynamic fighting style, practically tailor-made to deplete a gang-run building of henchmen. You'd probably have to deal with Jack Black's voice acting the whole time, but as long as he's more Brutal Legend and less Kung Fu Panda 3, it's a sacrifice that I'm willing to make.

And you'd never have to worry about wrestling seeming corny or "believable," since wrestling would be, as it should be, everything.

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