REASONABLE REMAKES: Gears Of War (The Video Game)

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Under The Gun is continuing our efforts to bring you more original and engaging content with REASONABLE REMAKES. Written by film-nerd Justin Proper, this column aims to highlight Hollywood’s forgotten gems and spark debate.

You see, we’ve grown tired of Hollywood rehashing ideas we’re old enough to remember. Why remake something the majority of the planet still remembers and loves deeply when there are tons of better ideas that have yet to be properly explored in film? If you agree, this column is for you.

If you have any suggestions for films or topics you’d like to see covered on REASONABLE REMAKES, please send an email titled “remakes” to utgjames@gmail.com.

Video games are amazing. Video game movies suck. Somehow taking something awesome and trying to squeeze the best aspects out of it for cinema fails every time. Not a single video game movie is above 50% on Rotten Tomatoes, and as an avid gamer this is very frustrating. So what goes wrong? It’s impossible to please all the fanboys, and the biggest mistake is trying to follow the source material to closely, or throwing most of it out. The movies forget that the best part about games is that you get to play them. You get to be the hero. I’ve seen enough video game movies to know where they crash and burn and it’s with this in mind I’m bringing you this weeks Reasonable Remakes special: The Perfect Video Game Movie : Gears Of War.

Gears Of War follows a group of soldiers fighting for humanity’s survival against the Locust Horde. The Locust are humanoid monsters that are vicious and brutal, doing everything they can to take over the planet from the humans. That’s really all of the story you need to know. Oh wait, the assault rifles have chainsaws on them. Now you’re up to speed. The thing that makes the games so fun is the visceral and satisfying ways you fight the war. You can chainsaw the Locust, curb stomp them, blow them up, and dismember them in many other ways. This needs to translate to the film. The game is from a 3rd person perspective, so we don’t need that gimmicky “first-person shooter” sequence bullshit from the Doom movie. The third Gears Of War game just released and the plot is all wrapped up. It took 3 games to tell the story, so the first thing the writers need to realize is that they can’t fit the Gears plot in to the movie. The best option for the plot of a Gears movie would be to have it cover the events of Emergence Day (when the Locust first appeared) and the beginning of the war with the Locust. The first Gears game starts after these events so a movie based on them would be a great way to fill in the gaps and expand the Gears universe. There’s a lot of ways this movie can go wrong, but as long as the writers collaborate with the game’s writers and use the movie to tell an independent story that still enhances the experience of the games this would be a success.

The director of this movie has a huge responsibility to capture the feel of the game. The fast-paced action sequences would need a very fine touch to be just the right level of ridiculous and amazing. The best director in my mind isn’t just one guy, it’s two: Neveldine/Taylor. These are the guys that brought us both Crank movies (which are some of the most entertaining movies to come out in the last decade) and Gamer. The way they handled the video game sequence of Gamer leads me to believe they could relay the feel of Gears Of War to the general audience, and please the fanboys. I”ll be happy as long as Uwe Boll isn’t allowed anywhere near this film. He’s ruined enough great video games as it is with his awful movies.

Casting this movie has been tough for me. I’ve been trying to peg down the perfect actors for the last couple days and I think I finally got it. For Marcus Fenix (the main character) the best fit would be Dominic Purcell. Yeah, the guy from Prison Break. He’s got the right look, and I’m pretty confident he could pull off the attitude (strong, silent, with subtle emotion and humor). Dominic Santiago (the supporting character and Marcus’ brother in war) could be played by Dwayne Johnson. I know he’s not latino, but he looks close enough (Hollywood has done worse, Jake Gyllenhaal sure isn’t Persian). Plus, Johnson can play both the lovable Dom, and the battle hardened Dom well. Colonel Hoffman should be played by R. Lee Emery (that’s pretty obvious) and Anya Stroud (Marcus’ love interest) would be best played by Scarlett Johansson. She’s got the right edge of bad ass (Iron Man and the upcoming Avengers prove that) and she can downplay her beauty quite well (Ghost World). Sorry guys, but no Baird of Cole in the movie, they met up with Delta Squad after the beginning of the first game. If they do have brief cameos somewhere in the movie then Paul Walker should play Baird and Lester Speight (he voices Cole in the games and does some small acting gigs) for Cole.

If Hollywood kept these things in mind we could have a really entertaining and exciting movie on our hands. Agree? Disagree? Let me know in the comment section. We’ll return to your regularly scheduled article next week, if I can put down my controller long enough to write another article by then. I’ll be honest, it’s going to be tough.

Written by: Justin Proper (Follow him on Twitter)

Checkout the trailer for Gears Of War 3, which was released this week exclusively for Xbox 360:

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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