The history of video games crossing over to movies has not been a smooth one, it’s a landscape littered with the corpses of video game characters that just couldn’t cut it on the big screen. For every Alice there’s a Max Payne lying in the gutter, buried underneath a pile of disappointed gamer and movie critic reviews. Silent Hill: Revelation 3D (follow up to 2006’s Silent Hill) opens this weekend, but can it break the game-to-movie curse? Let’s look at some of the past wins and failures from gaming’s past.
Silent Hill: Revelation 3D (2012)
The prospects for Silent Hill: Revelation 3D are looking good. The first incarnation of the movie, didn’t disappoint horror or game fans and provided some serious scares. Being that this latest film is based on the game Silent Hill 3 and ups the entertainment factor with 3D, fans can probably expect a solid popcorn movie horror flick. It might be lacking in the big name actor department, but that’s never hindered the horror genre in the past.
Super Mario Bros. (1993)
One of biggest game franchises and first games to make the jump to the big screen, Super Mario Bros. went down as an utter disaster with both game and movie fans alike. The movie’s budget was $48 million, but the clunker only netted $21 million at the box office. The casting wasn’t exactly great with Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo filling the plumber brother’s boots and Dennis Hopper playing King Koopa. The real issue though, a horrendous script that should have been left buried in the mushroom kingdom.
Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001)
Say what you want about the movie, but it’s hard to argue against the casting of Angelina Jolie for Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, the woman filled out those hiking boots near perfectly. The movie wasn’t pulling in any Oscars (but what video game movies are really?), but it’s actually a pretty solid action flick that scored huge at the box office, netting over $270 million.
Resident Evil (2002)
Probably the best game-to-movie crossover (at least the first film), Milla Jovovich and Paul W.S. Anderson knocked it out of the Raccoon City ball park with Resident Evil. Milla came across as both sexy and completely badass in her role of Alice, and the movie didn’t disappoint in the action/scare factor either. Those T-virus zombie dogs are to this day, still the gnarliest canines to ever hit the silver screen.
Double Dragon (1994)
The Double Dragon brothers Billy and Jimmy were complete hard-asses in the game version, cracking bottles over the heads of thugs and whipping up on baseball swinging mohawk chicks. So the casting of boy next door Scott Wolf didn’t really fit the bill in any way whatsoever. Throw in Who’s the Boss teen hottie Alyssa Milano and a PG script, and what fans were left with was a martial arts flick that punched like a noodle-armed karate school drop out.
Mortal Kombat (1995)
Mortal Kombat is largely looked at as the first “successful” game-to-movie crossover. While it fell short of many fans’ expectations and was nowhere near a great movie, it didn’t totally suck either. While the film lost out on stars Jean-Claude Van Damme, Tom Cruise and Brandon Lee, the cast of unknowns pulled off a decent movie that didn’t totally embarrass the game franchise. Perhaps the most notable thing to come out of the film was the soundtrack, which reached platinum status just 10 days after it was released.
Max Payne (2008)
Oh Max Payne, how did you fall so very short on the movie screen from your badass game persona? Everything was in place – a solid director, big name stars Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis, so what went wrong exactly? Fans and critics alike argued about the poor plot that didn’t give the game its due and while Whalberg is a great actor in gritty roles, he actually was nominated for a Razzie award as “worst actor” for his take on Max Payne. Ouch.
Silent Hill: Revelation 3D hits theaters everywhere October 26, 2012.