- Last Updated: Saturday, 25 April 2020 00:44
- Written by Lupe R Haas
In an ocean of terrible video game movie adaptations, we take a look at 5 of the best video game films that were surprisingly good, even great.
Of all the video game film adaptations, Silent Hill was the closest to a perfect ten out of ten stars. This is because not only was it a great adaptation, but if Silent Hill the game never existed, the film would stand on its own as an impressive piece of cinematography.
It’s a genuinely creepy psychological horror film that pays great tribute to the video game, with its unsettling atmosphere, grainy film effects, and excellent use of CGI and monster costumes. Silent Hill really deserves to be remembered not just as a film based on a video game, but as an overall fantastic horror film in its own right.
Tomb Raider (2018)
The original 2001 Tomb Raider film, starring Angelina Jolie, was basically Jolie dodging around and shooting bad guys in a Lara Croft outfit, under the thin pretense of a Tomb Raider-inspired plot. It was, for lack of better words, a silly action movie starring a beautiful lady.
The 2018 reboot takes an entirely different approach, adding grit, detail, and (gasp) character depth to a well-written plot. Starring Alicia Vikander as Lara Croft, Tomb Raider brings a more relatable, introspective Lara Croft to the screen, rather than simply capitalizing on the game’s popularity. It’s no surprise that the Tomb Raider franchise has a solid fan base, which has led to its appearance via other mediums including slot games found on this site.
Like Silent Hill, the Warcraft film is not just a great movie adaptation of a video game, but could really stand on its own as an epic fantasy movie in leagues with Lord of the Rings. In fact, director Duncan Jones cited Peter Jackson’s LotR trilogy as an inspiration for his approach to Warcraft, and it definitely worked.
The film did an amazing job of adapting Warcraft lore to the big screen, and turned out to be the fantasy-action epic the name Warcraft deserves. The film grossed over $491 million worldwide, but unfortunately, the film’s production budget was so high (it really showed) the studio ended up losing $15 million in the long run, and a sequel doesn’t look possible.
The Resident Evil video game franchise started out as zombie-centric survival horror games, but then strayed into all sorts of science fiction global conspiracy confusion. But this ended up having a pretty good impact on the direction of the films, because it gave the film directors more creative room than filming just another “zombie horror” film. I mean, remember what Hollywood did to World War Z?
In any case, the Resident Evil films earn their place on this list not just for being great film adaptations, but for not taking the easy way out of being cheap and easy zombie-shooter flicks.
The first Mortal Kombat game was heavily inspired by Bruce Lee’s Enter the Dragon, borrowing several plot elements from the kung-fu classic, as well as several character designs from other popular martial arts films. Liu Kang is Bruce Lee, Johnny Cage is Jean Claude Van Damme, Raiden and Shang Tsung are both inspired by characters from Big Trouble in Little China.
Whereas the Street Fighter movie was an abysmal failure (and actually starred Jean Claude VD), the first Mortal Kombat film was a blockbuster success that grossed $122 million worldwide. The film was, in many parts, a nearly shot-for-shot recreation of Enter the Dragon with Mortal Kombat costumes, but that just made it awesomer. And who doesn’t remember the theme song? You’re singing it right now.