So this past week I subjected myself to two new movies based on previous stories; in the case of one, X-Men 3, a comic book series and in the case of the other, The Da Vinci Code, a best-selling novel. Neither of them was all that great, but neither was terrible either. I was really looking forward to X-Men since I’ve always loved the comic book series and the first two films were great. The third installment, however, just didn’t do it for me. Conversely I went into The Da Vinci Code expecting a boring and ridiculous story based on an incredibly bad novel. In this case I was…well I’m not going to say I was pleasantly surprised because it really wasn’t a very good movie, but it did surpass the novel simply because it took less time. Now, though I could certainly spend some time beating up on The Da Vinci Code or even X-Men, this just doesn’t seem like a particularly original thing to do with my first post. It also seems, especially in the case of DVC, like beating the hell out of the weakest kid on the playground just because I can. Instead I thought it might be interesting to present some ideas for books and stories that I’ve always wished would find their way onto the big screen.
First up how about I Am Legend by Richard Matheson. This book has actually been adapted into two different motion pictures, though neither was called I Am Legend and, according to wikipedia at least, neither was very good either. It turns out that someone figured that this one was worth another try because it is currently in pre-production, slated for release sometime in 2007. For those of you not familiar with this book, it’s a great little novella about the last human being living in a world full of vampires. It has some wonderfully dark humour, lots of action, and the theme of the book is a fascinating exploration of Otherness (hey, vampires are people too!!).
Another book that I think would translate well to the big screen is Larry Niven and Jerry Pournell’s Lucifer’s Hammer. If you’ve never read the book and you’re looking for something that will keep you turning pages, this is the book for you (though clearly not everyone loved this book, see here). It’s basically about an asteroid that hits the Earth. I know what you’re thinking…what about Armageddon and Deep Impact? Well in both of those films the asteroid misses the Earth. I assure you that Niven and Pournell’s take is far more interesting. BTW this one was Jin’s suggestion…credit where credit is due.
Shifting gears out of Sci-fi I’ve always wanted to see a movie made from Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse. If you’re familiar with the Jack Ryan series this book occurs in the same timeline but is centred on the character who later comes to be known as John Clark. Once again, however, someone beat me to the punch. According to IMDb the movie is in pre-production and Joaquine Phoenix is rumored to be attached for the leading role. Excellent Smithers.