We’ve all known it for a while, but now it’s official: Originality in Hollywood is dead. It’s bad enough that we have movies adapted from the toy lines Transformers and G.I. Joe, now Hasbro is bringing their board games to life on the silver screen. Battleship, directed by Peter Berg and starring Liam Neeson, is due in theaters in 2012, and now it’s just been announced that a writer has been hired to pen a screenplay based on the strategy game Risk. And let’s not forget those persistent rumors that Ridley Scott is working on Monopoly. It’s not necessarily an idea without precedent; remember Clue? But still, Clue has to be the only board game in history that has anything that could possibly be referred to as a “plot”.
What does this mean? Well, of course it means it’s time to mock Hollywood mercilessly. You want ideas for movies based on board games (or quasi-board games, as the case may be)? Try these on for size:
The Game: Players systematically remove blocks from a tower and place them on top, creating a taller and increasingly unstable tower until it collapses.
The Film: The ultimate disaster movie! Roland Emmerich (Independence Day, 2012) brings us a tale of searing suspense and explosive action as an everyman cop (played by Bruce Willis) attempts to stop a group of terrorists wreaking havoc on the Jenga Tower! It’s like Die Hard for a new generation, but with bigger explosions!
The Game: Players cooperatively build a giant and elaborate mouse trap, with which they then attempt to trap each other’s mouse-shaped game pieces.
The Film: The next big smash from DreamWorks Animation, Mouse Trap features a pair of conniving rival mice (voiced by Hugh Laurie and Michael Caine) who attempt to out-do each other by building the better mouse trap. Of course, as things escalate, the game turns a bit deadly. Think The Prestige, but with fewer magicians and more animated mice.
The Game: A game of hand-eye coordination and fine motor skill, players attempt to remove pieces from from the patient on an operating table without touching the sides of the cavities in the board.
The Film: Director Guillermo Del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy) weaves a terrifying tale of medical horror! A mysterious (and slightly warped) mad doctor (played by Ron Perlman) races to solve the underlying condition that continues to afflict Cavity Sam (Doug Jones) as more and more icky bits are removed from his body. Beware the Frog in His Throat!
The Game: Players mash on levers that control the mouths of their Hungry Hippos, racing to gobble up more marbles than their opponents.
The Film: Hot off the runaway box office success of Mr. Popper’s Penguins, Jim Carrey stars as a man racing to sate the voracious appetites of his four pet hippos before they can gobble up the entire city! From acclaimed director Raja Gosnell, and featuring WETA Workshop’s most mind-blowing and life-like CGI since Avatar.
The Game: Players race around the game board, attempting to reach “Home” before special Sorry! cards allow their opponents to knock them back to the start.
The Film: In this riveting tale of suspense from writer/director Quentin Tarantino, Samuel L. Jackson plays a father on the edge, trying to rescue his family from the mob and return them safely home. Every time this desperate man is forced to dispatch another of the mob’s thugs, he never forgets to offer a polite apology…while extracting one of his own. (“Say ‘Sorry’ again, motherf***er! Say ‘Sorry’ again!!“)
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It’s almost sad that it’s come to this. Yet, somehow, I wish some of these ideas seemed more far-fetched. Oh well. Maybe it’ll be okay, as long as that Battleship movie doesn’t look too much like this:
This post is part of our User Showcase series. You can find Nigel as johnmason on Flickchart. If you’re interested to submit your own story or article describing your thoughts about movies and Flickchart, read our original post for how to become a guest writer here on the Flickchart Blog.