I don’t want to rag on Seth Gordon here. King of Kong was a damn fine film. He had a great story to work with, thanks to the naturally occurring “hero vs. villain” conflict at the heart of it, but it is a well put-together documentary that takes an honest and fair look at a particular subset of video-game culture. A War Games reboot, though?
Come on, Hollywood. Try harder.
MGM wants Gordon to develop and direct a new take on the 1983 film, Deadline reports. The original is great fun, a relic of the Cold War era starring Matthew Broderick. Unless Gordon goes period for a reboot, a move I would applaud while asking “why bother in the first place,” I just don’t see how this story could be made to work in a modern setting.
Then again, that’s the trouble with reboots– they make a certain amount of sense when you’re talking about a franchise. By rebooting, you’re taking the underlying narrative back to its origin. A movie like War Games, though, a story that exists unto itself with no established fiction that lives outside the opening and closing credits? Doesn’t make sense. If you really want to make a movie about a narrowly averted global war, you can make it without pillaging anyone’s memories of a particular classic.
That’s what I don’t get about reboots. Is it just the geek world that rises up angrily over things like this? Does the larger public simply not care if a movie called War Games in no way resembles the older movie on which it is supposedly based? Gordon is a talented filmmaker who deserves the benefit of the doubt, but I just wish someone out there would wake up and realize that “reboot” is actually a dirty word.
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