Hollywood has turned into a meat factory, churning out as many cash-cow movies as possible with complete disregard for taste.
In the 1990s and early 2000s we had blockbuster movies, such as Saving Private Ryan, Gladiator, and Braveheart. Those movies were incredible because time was spent on the screenplay, the acting, and special effects was important but not the most important thing.
And then something drastic happened; three trends that negatively impacted the quality of movies today. For the sake of this blog, these trends will be known as diseases.
1. Special Effects Disease
Budgets spent purely on special effects.
Examples: Terminator 4, Terminator Genisys (sorry, Arnold. You know I love you), Avatar, Star Wars I (1999).
2. Remake Disease
Budgets spent on remakes of movies.
Examples: Ghostbusters (2016), Total Recall (2012).
3. Sequel/Prequel Disease
Bad Sequel or Prequel.
Examples: Star Wars I, II, and III, and all Hobbit movies.
I first noticed these trends in 2010, when Clash of the Titans (2010) came out. It had two diseases: Special Effects and Remake, and then that series completed the trifecta with a horrible sequel, Wrath of The Titans (2012).
Obviously, these diseases have been in Hollywood before 2010, but that’s when I first noticed it, and since then the diseases have become rampant, and have clearly impacted the video game industry.
Here are a few examples of video games effected by these diseases.
Special Effects Disease
Star Wars Battlefront – What a beautiful looking game, but with ZERO substance. There’s no campaign mode. The multiplayer battles are so redundant and each fight turns into one, long narrow f*ckfest. Way too many players on each map. The game is so bad it doesn’t deserve more than this paragraph.
The Division – Slightly better than Star Wars Battlefront, but suffers from the same special effects disease. An empty game. Repetitive missions. Upgrades galore. It’s trying to be like Destiny and World of Warcraft, where it’s an endless game of upgrades. Except it forgot one thing about itself: It sucks.
Gears of War, Remastered – actually a fun game, but why did I agree to pay $60 for this again? Oh, that’s right, because the ads sucked me in and I pretty much directly funded Gears of War 4.
Resident Evil 4 – Fantastic game. I love it. But the controls are horrible because it’s based off of a system from over 10 years ago, and they refuse to upgrade it, making it somewhat frustrating to play, but not to the extent where I feel I wasted my money.
BioShock Collection – Another great series of game. But can you please just work on the next game, instead of begging me for money AGAIN on games you already made?
Call of Duty Series (any game post Black Ops) – what a horrible series this has become. It takes the skin of the last game, copy pastes it into a new campaign, and instead of enhancing the look and feel of the game, it decides to copy TitanFall and include things like jet packs. Call of Duty used to be the best FPS because it was realistic and contemporary (WW1, WW2). But then jet packs? Get the f*ck outta here.
Why put their money into superficial content? Why not focus on innovation and creativity? Why remake these titles? Why not put more time into new, engaging stories?
Answer: Recycling popular games and cutting corners is the safe play. It saves time and money. As customers we’re buying in, so why would they change?
For now the video game industry brings out a higher percentage of quality products than Hollywood. A few of the games I mentioned earlier technically have that Hollywood disease, but they are still fun.
To me the difference between video games and Hollywood is this: I will give a Call of Duty demo a shot, and I may even buy the full game. But there’s no way I’m buying any Jason Stratham movie, post The Italian Job (2003). Catch my drift?
Let’s just hope that huge, blockbuster flops like Battlefront and The Division are anomalies, and don’t become the norm like they are in Hollywood.