I went and saw the "Vampire Assistant" this weekend with my nephew. Not a bad movie but not a great one either. But it got me to wondering why is Hollywood so brain dead that it is now making every children or teenage book or even TOY that it can get its hands onto into a movie? None of these movies are any good. "Transformers" was pure cotton candy ... at best. And then so many others never live up to what their fans consider to be their potential.

Narnia franchise sucked so bad that even Disney (the home of cotton candy movies) dropped out of it. And how low into the barrel will Hollywood go? Are we to expect a live-action "He-Man the Movie" soon? Where's the creativity these days? I mean we're even recycling so-so TV shows as "Battlestar Galactica", "V", and so forth. As far as science fiction goes, you will know we hit rock bottom if they make an update of "Space 1999". And we're even messing with classics like "War of the Worlds" and "The Day the Earth Stood Still".

When can we expect Will Smith to play the lead in the remake of "Casablanca"?

Is Hollywood so averse to risk that it feels it has a better chance to sell a repackaged piece of discarded plastic then take a risk on something new and original? Even independent films seem far more concerned with getting a B List "star" for their pics than anything else.
When even the Academy nominates little-seen foreign films instead of popular American films, you know even Hollywood knows they're putting out garbage.
Is there a bottom? If there is, what will happen once we hit it? When will we hit it? Or will we ever hit it? Will our standards just keep getting lower and lower on what is made into movies? Should we not be surprised if "Jack and Jill the Movie" is actually made?

Thoughts appreciated.
Scott
1 2
keep getting lower and lower on what is made into movies? Should we not be surprised if "Jack and Jill the Movie" is actually made?

Dude. Your worst nightmare can't keep up with the grim reality. Did you know that Bazooka Joe the movie is in pre-production? I *** you not, look it up on imdb.
Well, that's due to economic bankrupcty, not creative bankrupcty. It's common wisdom that even indies need a recognizable face to get distribution and have a prayer of making the investors' money back. But common wisdom can be wrong. Look at the runaway success of Slumdog Millionaire, and Once.
I think the idea is that movies are ungodly costly to make and there's so many other things that people spend their downtime on these days (video games, cable TV, porn), therefore the studios are looking for things that are easier to sell. Everybody knows who Spider-Man is, and everybody knows A Christmas Carol. There's a built-in audience and they don't have to come up with earth-shattering marketing plans to let people know what it's about.
Alexei
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
Sent that too soon. I'm not saying that I like this plan, or that it succeeds in making movies that are either hits (Punisher War Journal) or fun to watch (who else *** hated Spider-Man 2?). But this is probably what they're thinking.
I think, to a lesser extent, this has always happened. The first feature film made in Hollywood, 1924's The Squaw* Man, was based on a hit Broadway play. It's just more ridiculous than it's been before.
Alexei
*Supposedly squaw doesn't actually mean "C word" in Iroquois like Oprah says it does, but holy *** would this movie be funny if it did.
"STJensen"
sell a repackaged piece of discarded plastic

Now that you mention plastic what about "Lego, The Movie?"

I reckon with some imaginative stop-motion animation it could be intriguing. "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" suggests itself as a template.

Martin B
"STJensen"

sell a repackaged piece of discarded plastic

Using some of the many interpretations of common nursery rhymes could make a good core to a film. Certainly could have more depth than most comic books. Add a plot point where the last line is the key to an international secret society plot that the hero figures out at just the last minute the meaning of "With vinegar and brown paper." to gain control of Marie Antoinette's hidden jewel encrusted deadly mechanical spider and you've got a blockbuster!
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
Now that you mention plastic what about "Lego, The Movie?" I reckon with some imaginative stop-motion animation it could be intriguing. "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" suggests itself as a template.

No, it will be live action. It's a world where prefab construction materials transform the way we build our cities. But behind all that sunshine are the shadows. And darker than that are the hearts of evil men.
Yes, Lego the Movie is film noir.
I think the idea is that movies are ungodly costly to make

This is the part that needs to change. Movies used to be disposable entertainment, which is why people could take some risks with them. Now, you're spending a quarter-billion dollars (can that be right?) on something like Avatar so there's no way you can justify doing something, just to see how it might work out.
and there's so many other things that people spend their downtime on these days (video games, cable TV, porn), therefore ... built-in audience and they don't have to come up with earth-shattering marketing plans to let people know what it's about.[/nq]The other side of that is that is that if you're not trying to build an audience of 300,000 people, you also don't need an earth-shattering marketing plan. If you can make a feature film for $100K - and you can, I've worked on a lot of 'em - then you don't have to sell tickets to the entire world, plus have an earth-shattering DVD release and a HappyMeal® toy tie-in, just to break even. You can't afford stars, but then again you're not beholden to stars.

You're not going through endless development intended to do nothing more than blanderize your writing until it's 'safe' to sell to the entire potential movie-going public. 'Once' didn't succeed in spite of being so inexpensively made, it succeeded BECAUSE it was so inexpensively made. It didn't have to make a lot of money to turn a profit, and if it had tanked completely, the loss wouldn't have been so great - so it was safer to take some creative risks, which resulted in a film that did what other, multi-million dollar films simply couldn't do.
We all spend our days or nights writing spec scripts, that no one's ever going to buy. There's just no real market for them anymore, because the people who'd buy them don't want new or different or interesting; they want bland and predictable and ordinary. Ovum could make one of her scripts into a movie, if she wanted to - raise the money, hire the director and crew, produce the thing herself, and release it as the finished product she wants - not as some watered- down version that's been tweaked according to notes from Jimmy "JJ" "Kid Dy-No-Mite!" Walker and his 'people.' Trouble is, most of the folks who try this approach - and I've worked on a lot of 'em - haven't taken the opportunity to express any kind of personal vision, but have just tried to make cheaper versions of the bland, predictable, and ordinary that H'wood does so well.

If we want better movies, we have to make them, and support them when others make them.

Life Continues, Despite
Evidence to the Contrary
Steven
"STJensen"

sell a repackaged piece of discarded plastic

Now that you mention plastic what about "Lego, The Movie?"

ha-ha...I want to see Captain Crunch, the Serial.
Seriously though, I think it has to do with demand. Years ago we had cheap movie theaters, drive-ins, and all of about 3-10 television channels depending on where you lived most likely on a fuzzy black and white television machine...and that was it.

Now we have not only movie theaters, but VHS, CDV, DVD, IMAX, digital downloads, cable-satellite-Internet television with 60-900+ channels with people owning 2-3 televisions each, with each family member watching something different.
You need content that either hasn't been seen already a two dozen times, or you need to remake proven popular stories, or you need to create new stories that have a high probability of popular monetary success, or you need all three. The third option obviously being the most difficult critically speaking. Hence, most of it's going to crap or so-so at the best. But I have no doubt there's still some gems being made. Part of the reason I'm here is to hear about those gems whether old or new.
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
Show more