Film/TV May 27, 2010 at 4:00 am

Even Jake Gyllenhaal's Abs Can't Save Prince of Persia


.... Okay, was willing to run with you that Persia's a lackluster, mediocre movie, but then you end it with "But that's okay because it's from a lackluster, bad medium!" and, um, what?
I actually quite liked this film. I thought it was fun and silly and I quite liked the human aspect of the story (I'm too used to fighting dust monster zombies in the games!)

I supposed the biggest issue with games films is that most games are built on a concept. The first Sands of Time game was a revolutionary concept in that if you weren't too good at games, and there was a pit you kept falling down in, all you had to do was press a button and you'd rewind time. Usually you'd have to restart the level all over again and endure boring loading screens, but with this, it was like holding a TV remote and redo the bits you messed up.

Also the game was gorgeous. The midnight to dusk hues, the architecture of the arabian buildings and the mix of eastern and rock music really gave the game a sense of romance not usually seen in games. I suppose that was the biggest draw to making this a film, using a charismatic character like the prince and his steadily diminishing wardrobe would always be an appealing factor.

But it's very tricky with games. When a game becomes popular and profitable for it's gaming mechanics and being so immersive, things like rewinding time don't have the same effect on film.

With the recent news of Mass Effect becoming a film, I hope that too doesn't fall into the same trappings. The games are famed for their legendary dialogue and making even the fantastical believable so I hope there is always that hope that games will make it as a legendary film. We might not see it in a Ghost World or American Splendor way anytime soon, but hopefully more in a Star Wars or Dark Knight way sooner.

Well, that's what I hope as a gamer.

Soooo, is that last line supposed to be insulting films based on video games, or video games altogether? It's an important question, because one of those answers is really, really stupid!
@2: I've played several version of PoP, and I always thought the instant rewind conceit could have made for a compelling movie, if you made it a humorous action flick. Rewinding things to fix them could have brought the sane wit to the story that you see in Groundhog Day.

That said, you'd need talented writers, director and actors to pull it off.
Seriously, it's like saying, "Well, the Narnia movies were crap, but that's because they used to be kid's books, amirite?" And they were crap, solid, pure crap, but that doesn't have any bearing on where they came from.
Hey! I'm a bald uncle . . .
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time was an amazingly clever, charming, inventive game. Everything after it has been a slurry of shit and angst, and I had no doubt the movie would tend towards that. Executives simply cannot comprehend or accept that gamers and moviegoers WILL accept an interesting, well-written, nontraditional hero, or a strong (but NOT bitchy, just capable of existing without a man to lean on) love interest/ support character. I knew it'd be garbage from the get-go. Prince of Persia should've died after the Sands of Time. It's better to leave them wanting more than to taint the greatness of an unexpected hit with derivative, bland sequels and movies.
@3 I'm seriously guessing it's simply pointing out that video-game adaptations have, as a rule, sucked more balls than the busiest hooker in Vegas.
You have to have actually been in a lurching crowd to truly appreciate one.
I am a huge Jake Gyllenhaal fan, and I confess I went to this based almost entirely on my Gyllenhaal infatuation.

He was okay as an action star. He performs his stunt scenes well enough. And he had a few charming moments. But his accent... holy crap it was bad. I'm not sure whose idea it was that everyone had to talk with a British accent (do Persians speak with a Brit accent?). Gyllenhaal, for all his charms, doesn't do accents well. It was pretty inconsistent, and he sounded ridiculous half the time.
Problem is, filmmakers don't know how to make epics no more. Remember Stone's hideous 'Alexander'? Now we've either got warmed over Lucas-puke or the strained seriousness of Sir Ridley.

Problem is, the studios have to 'deal' with the vid game competition, which is making almost as much money as the porno field.

Me? I'll stick with Anthony Mann, Sam Bronston, Joe Mankiewicz, and yes, Cecil B. DeMille.

(PS: I wonder if this picture is a neocon plan to slap Ahmadinejad in the crotch?)

(RIP: D. Hopper)
why didn't they use Naveen Andrews? Were any of the actors Persian or Arab?

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