Coming off the recent news that DreamWorks Studios acquired the film rights to the Electronic Arts’ long running Need for Speed series, I couldn’t help but question the decision made by the well-respected movie studio. During the joint announcement, a rep for both companies stated that “[t]he film adaptation will be a fast-paced, high-octane film rooted in the tradition of the great car culture films of the 70s while being extremely faithful to the sprit of the video game franchise.” My initial reaction to this news was nothing short of: “Has Spielberg lost his mind?”
Though they may be different in storyline and in the featured vehicles, but how different can a Need for Speed movie really be from The Fast and the Furious series? I feel that there are numerous video games out there that deserve film adaptations far more than Need for Speed. The series is nothing more than a mixed bag of drag races, time trials, and the occasional cop chase, so one could assume when I heard this news, I could help but make a list of games I felt far more worthy of film adaptations. Of the numerous titles that came to mind, I present to you my top three:
Shadows of the Colossus
In movies these days, everything seems to be getting bigger. A movie isn’t successful unless there is some giant, impressive set piece or a towering monster. For this new obsession in the film industry, Shadows of the Colossus would make for the perfect adaptation. The story is light and straight forward, save for the ending twist, and the characters don’t need much fleshing out. Much like the critically acclaimed game, the focal point of the movie would be the impressively beautiful Colossi with the Wanderer being nothing more then a nameless “assassin”. The movie would rely on the wonder of these giant creatures, but not in the same sense as a movie like “Clash of the Titans”. They would be more then just mobile backdrops for over-the-top action sequences; they would be the cause for any emotions – be it pity, sorrow, and anger – that the film evokes.
Though the story of the hapless victim being chased by a murderous individual is nothing new to the movie industry, there is a certain level of creepiness that comes from the original Clock Tower’s foe, Scissorman. One of the more effective aspects of the series was its pacing. Slow for even Survival Horror standards, Clock Tower seemed to use this as a means to amplify the horror behind the impending doom that came in the form of a giant pair of sharpened scissors. On top of the pacing, though, there were also the sounds of the sheers behind opened and closed; if that didn’t send chills down your spine, than you are simply not human. While there already was an announcement in 2008 for a Clock Tower movie, little has come of it save for the directorial announcement – the man behind “Snakes on a Plane”.
Admittedly, this game made the list solely based on my undying fandom of the series. While some may argue that the extensive script, convoluted plot, and lengthy cut scenes from the Metal Gear Solid series virtually make them interactive movies, I still would find it a treat to see the origin story of Solid Snake play out on the big screen. Unfortunately, though, if you’re going to cover one game you really should cover them all; and to fit the entirety of content that was mixed into Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots and Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, it would probably take up four movies all on their own.