Don’t get me wrong.
I enjoyed this movie. It’s a day later and I’m still thinking about certain scenes. But just as much as I was moved and thrilled, I was also incredibly frustrated throughout the entire film.
Frustration came from one place and one place only.
I’ve seen this movie before.
I’ve seen it COUNTLESS of times.
It’s Starship Troopers.
It’s Tron: Legacy
It’s any sci-fi action movie where you have a young male hero who has a mentor, a brother, a rival, a clown(s), an evil alien race (or even evil humans) and a love interest. Maybe not all of these, but most of them.
The action and the specifics of the plot may vary and as well as the action. The quality of those specifics may vary as well. Some better than others even (Like I think Pacific Rim was extremely better than Battleship).
Now, do not read any further if you don’t want to be spoiled for Pacific Rim, but within the first ten minutes of the movie, if you, like me have seen plenty of these kinds of movies, you already knows how this will turn out.
This is basically what happens in these movies.
The hero is male.
The hero’s brother will die.
The rival most likely dies (not always, depends on how much of a jerk he is).
The mentor will most definitely die.
Any and all interesting side characters will have absolutely no character development or screen time and will most likely be killed off.
The clown or clowns will survive (the comic reliefs are immune to death, in this case the Kanju research scientists).
The hero will win the girl in the end.
The love interest will either be rescued by the hero or will mainly be supporting the hero, especially near the end, and have no individual plotline, but rather will adapt to the hero’s plotline.
The evil alien race is mindlessly evil and will be vanquished at the end.
And I get it. It works. In a business where you are spending MILLIONS of dollars, if you find a formula that gets the audience coming and spending their money, then hell yeah we’re going to stick to it for as long as possible.
But I’m so BORED and so frustrated.
And I don’t think I’m the only one.
I feel like there needs to be a movie revolution. I even think we might even be on the brink of one, but I could just be stupidly idealistic.
But I cannot be the only one who thinks Hollywood can’t continue to make money if they continue in this direction.
I cannot be the only one who thinks…
“If only they just __________ in this movie, it’d be so much better.”
I’ve been doing this a lot lately in movies I enjoyed but felt they weren’t reaching their potential. Expecially with Tron:Legacy (If only they just did more with TRON’s character…) and with Pacific Rim.
If only they developed the Chinese and Russian pilots a bit more, their deaths would have been worse and thus created a higher impact.
If only the aliens had another reason for what they did that wasn’t just to destroy all life on earth (god that is getting so boring).
If only the hero’s brother wasn’t killed off and was actually an interesting and dynamic element to the plot.
If only the heroine had more of a role other than the hero’s backup and eventual love interest at the end.
If only they had a more complicated end game other than jump in the portal and explode (we did this already with The Avengers).
If only they actually cared more and showed that they cared more when people died (seriously, five people died in the first battle in Hong Kong, and they said no time to mourn, but they had a few seconds to celebrate apparently, and the father told the damn Idris Alba character that he was with his SON, and yeah, he didn’t do much to protect the boy, did he? nor did the father show much reaction at his death, there was reaction but I wanted a stronger one without being melodramatic.)
If only, if only, if only…
Oh, and the MAJOR “If only” that I use in almost ALL fantasy/sci-fi action movies I watch nowadays.
If only the main hero was a woman.
With that single change alone I’d watch that movie ten times in a row and pay every time. I’d just rent out the movie theater. I would LOVE them so much that I would personally mail the movie makers a damn THANK YOU letter.
I wonder if I’m the only one. I wonder if I am delusional. I don’t think I am. And I know for sure this is what I want very, very much.
And damnit, if they’re not going to take the formula to the next level, to the evolution, then I guess I have to give it a shot.
Again, I hate saying crap and having nothing to show for it. But I am serious.
I want this. And I am going to go for it. Unless of course, someone goes for it before I do.
Which by all means…