Original, creative storylines, plots, and movie concepts have gone the way of the View-Master – replaced by flashy, style-over-substance monstrosities about CGI transforming-robot battles, cartoonish critters dancing to contemporary hip-hop songs, and vapid remakes of movies that didn’t need remakes in the first place.
The latest trend of the conglomerate movie machine? Turning our beloved board games, which we all spent years playing with when we were kids, into movies.
Yes, Battleship is a real thing. Sure, it might be “loosely based” on the classic game, but it is still produced by Hasbro. The company has already recouped billions of dollars with the Transformers franchise and the horrific GI Joe: Rise of the Cobra (and its upcoming sequel), so it doesn’t appear as if the company has any plans to stop turning our childhood memories into soulless special effects extravaganzas.
Even if Battleship turns out to be whole boatload of boredom, there are already more board game movies in the works: Candy Land – starring Adam Sandler, in a film billed as (we’re not making this up) “Lord of the Rings, But With Candy!”), Stretch Armstrong (?!), Ouija, and Risk, with more threatening to be on the way if Monopoly money has its way.
In the theme of “Hollywood is completely out of ideas,” we present our Top 11 list of board games we’d love to see hit the silver screen.
Just dust off a few of these old standards, throw in a vague futuristic setting, get a few good-looking stars, and BAM – Hollywood gold!
(Please send all residuals for the following ideas to Mr. Machine and Chatty Cathy at Rock Cellar Magazine.)
- Guess Who??
Milton Bradley’s 1980s board game, requiring players to pick out a specific person from a lineup of goofy characters based on questions about physical appearance, is perfect fodder for a gritty suspense thriller.
Maybe someone’s family is killed, kidnapped, or whatever (Liam Neeson‘s, obviously) and the hero goes off the grid in order to find the killer and, you know, smash his or her face into the pavement. That sort of thing.
The catch? Neeson’s vengeful soul must go about this thirst for justice armed with just a tiny vocabulary. See, somehow in the attack, the killer(s) damaged Neeson’s speech faculties, leaving him only capable of asking yes or no questions, such as “do you know who killed my family – yes? or no?”
Before long, and due to the police force’s disinterest in helping him out at all, Liam ends up doing things HIS way, eschewing the trite, short phrases in favor of total, pissed-off silence. Oh, and he ends up smashing the killer’s face into the ground. Vengeance!
Rowan Atkinson (Mr. Bean) has made a career out of one of the most awkward characters to ever grace the screen, so who better to star as the terribly clumsy but well-to-do Museum Guide?
At some point, Museum Guide inevitably uncovers a giant global cover-up put on by his dastardly, domineering boss (Terence Stamp). While channeling Mr. Bean with his tendency to spill coffee on priceless pieces of artwork and break elaborate dinosaur sculptures, he ends up stumbling his way to Saving The Day.
Granted, this is a bit of a stretch from the tenets of Sorry! the game, but again, we’re talking “loosely based”.
- The Game of Life (& Choose Your Own Adventure)
Really, how has this not been turned into a movie yet? Sure, many “coming of age” films have been pumped out over the years, but not one specifically tied to the game of Life.
Styled after films such as Magnolia and Crash, this flick will be a series of seemingly random vignettes about an eclectic array of archetypal characters that get more complex as the film progresses. As characters make decisions (be they wise or reckless), paths cross, drama unfolds, and lives are changed, with dire consequences (or happy ones, depending on the decisions made).
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