195: Paul W.S. Anderson: Not as Bad as Uwe Boll

Paul W.S. Anderson: Not as Bad as Uwe Boll

Paul W.S. Anderson has directed nearly as many videogame-based movies as his notorious German colleague, yet his reputation remains relatively intact. How did he manage this feat? Graeme Virtue puts himself through a survival-horror gauntlet of Anderson's films to find out.

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It's a bit of the case of, you don't need to be faster then the tiger, you just need to be faster then the guy beside you. He is faster then Uwe Boll, and we are all happy to see the tiger get Uwe :P. That being said, I did enjoy many of he's films, and agree with you that they are not bad, but wish for something more.

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...I liked the FPS secence in Doom...

Nimbus:
I liked the FPS secence in Doom...

Ditto...but I felt guilty about liking it.

Hell, the guy made Event Horizon, which is still one of the scariest sci-fi horror films I've ever seen. Maybe he just needs to ditch zombies and do something in outer-space.

This was a pretty good read. I liked how you examined each movie from different perspectives, it made the whole thing much more enjoyable to read.

It's funny that many people actually consider Anderson to be one of the few directors worse than Boll, but if Event Horizon showed us anything, it showed that at least Anderson knows how to make a good film.

Personally, I think all directors should stay away from video games. The interactivity of video games is what makes them special, and removing that can only result in disaster.

Wow... That's a pretty crappy conclusion to the article. I mean, personally, I'm a fan of Anderson's work. I take it for what it is, and it serves its purpose well. It's always entertaining, with nice special effects, good music, and keeps me from being bored.

But if the article said that Anderson was a hack who's in it for the money, I would've accepted that (provided there was a legitimate argument), or if the article said that Anderson loves games I would've accepted that. But to say that he's a hack who does it for the love of it is so inconclusive... It's an editorial, you're allowed to have an opinion.

I liked the Resident Evil trilogy, without ever having played the game. It's got neat little character flourishes, and overall the three movies work well together which is an achievement in and of itself. The fact that the series wasn't just a money spinner is evident.

And Event Horizon sucked sucked sucked sucked sooooo bad.

So, really, meh.

Honestly I could almost like the guy but well, RE although not strictly sticking to the source material it was not too bad.
RE2 however threw in the typical hollywood wire fighting bullshit. I am sorry but Alice ran down a fucking building then jump off and kicked a guy in the head. That was too cheesy for me. Remove Alice and focus on some more human heroes and I would be cool with it.
RE3... how do I say this. RE3 was shit. Complete and utter fracking shit. Come on? Clones? Jedi powers? Get rid of Alice for fracks sake.
Give the RE movies to Zack Snyder. At least Dawn of the Dead was a decent watch.

But to be fair, he did what he could with the source material. RE doesn't have a stellar story so keeping to it would not have yielded a better movie.

I didn't care too much for Event Horizon, but least the rest of his oeuvre is stupid to the point of being silly rather than stupid to the point of offending. Quite frankly I liked the first RE movie a good bit more than Transformers because Anderson at least realizes when a scene is falling flat and knows when to add crazy. Transformers came from Michael Bay and still managed to have gag-me-with-a-spoon smarmy scenes like "have you been wanking, lol?" and "oh those wacky Autobots" moments that were dead inside. Paul Anderson cuts out his cheese-festery a little bit better; Armageddon from Bay I liked but that was due to being carried by Willis and Buscemi.

Nimbus:
...

...

...I liked the FPS secence in Doom...

I enjoyed it too. I just wish they wouldn't of goofed with the story line so much!

I loved Resident Evil: Apocalypse. The first one was not my favorite but the ending was fun. I loved some of the fight scenes in Extinction too. I'm such a Resident Evil junkie though. Games or movies and you have me. I can't get enough of it, even if I wasn't a fan of Alyaiah (sp?)'s acting.

I think one of the things that make Mortal Kombat a decent movie was that he directed it but didn't WRITE it. I actually quite like him as a director, it's his screenwriting that I think blows. That's why I think that having someone else direct the RE sequel films was a bad idea, they should have had someone else write it and him just direct it.

Count me in among the Event Horizon fans, though...

For a person who's never played a Resident Evil game, the movies were quite fun :D

I will never forgive Uwe Boll for House of the Dead. That was the WORST movie ever made. If they made a B-Movie about the life of Barney the Dinosaur which included two hours of chanting and a graphic sex scene with a Teletubbie...it would STILL be better than the gigantic turd called House of the Dead.

Fuck Uwe Boll. Gimme my two hours back!!!

Talendra:
It's a bit of the case of, you don't need to be faster then the tiger, you just need to be faster then the guy beside you. He is faster then Uwe Boll, and we are all happy to see the tiger get Uwe :P

The mental image... it pleases me...

Interesting article. I liked Mortal Kombat pretty well back in the day (although, I was, like, 10). And I'm not too much of a RE fan, games or movies, so I can't really comment on that. I just wish the majority of the films examined weren't all the same franchise - I'm curious if he'll make any more video game-based movies in the future that we can dissect in a similar manner.

Every film that W.S. Anderson has directed(again, directed) has been very enjoyable to me.

That's why the second AvP and the last two REs sucked compared to the originals. Every time he pawns his work on other directors, the projects turn out badly.

UWE BOLE IS THE MOST ARTISTICALLY CHARGED AND VISUALLY ENGROSSING DIRECTOR IN CINEMATIC HISTORY.......bahahahaha

W.S. Anderson actually plays the games he adapts, and tends to treat the source material respectfully.

Uwe Boll just looks at the name, and comes up with crap at random. (And I do mean crap)

cj_iwakura:
W.S. Anderson actually plays the games he adapts, and tends to treat the source material respectfully.

If you think the RE movies are a respectful rendition of the source material then you're crazier than W.S. Anderson. The Alice character is a Mary Sue that's even stronger than the crazy super-speed bullet dodging Wesker of RE5 but without any of the Wesker charms. She's entirely unlikable, but she's our protagonist?

Oh, and in the RE2 movie Anderson turned Jill Valentine into a second class character - behind Carlos in importance, and Nemesis CRIED at the end.
End of debate.

Onyxblackwolf:

cj_iwakura:
W.S. Anderson actually plays the games he adapts, and tends to treat the source material respectfully.

If you think the RE movies are a respectful rendition of the source material then you're crazier than W.S. Anderson. The Alice character is a Mary Sue that's even stronger than the crazy super-speed bullet dodging Wesker of RE5 but without any of the Wesker charms. She's entirely unlikable, but she's our protagonist?

Oh, and in the RE2 movie Anderson turned Jill Valentine into a second class character - behind Carlos in importance, and Nemesis CRIED at the end.
End of debate.

I'm not fond of the RE2 movie, but Anderson phoned that in.

I liked the RE1 movie for coming up with something original that still had the feel of Resident Evil. And it could've been much worse than Alice. At least it's a cool character, I think. RE2 decided to adapt the games more directly, and look how badly that went.

Why was Alien vs. Predator not on this list? I grew up on those games... and comics... and toys...

Grand_Poohbah:

Nimbus:
...I liked the FPS secence in Doom...

I enjoyed it too. I just wish they wouldn't of goofed with the story line so much!

Yeah, agreed.

Also, insofar as the Resident Evil movies go.. I absolutely hated Resident Evil 1, I loved Resident Evil 2 because it reminded me SO much of the games, I thought it was made by a totally different production crew. Nemesis, running through the building with the helicopter after you (Code Veronica, anyone?), Jill and Carlos were all big Resident Evil kickers for me because they REMINDED me of the game. Resident Evil one felt like it was just using some of the names and made up everything else. And the sex scene in RE1 was SO freaking uncalled for, it did nothing to help the movie. I haven't seen the third one yet, but it didn't look nearly as good as RE2 did, so I haven't been in a huge hurry to see it, although my aunt has it.

Mortal Kombat 1, for me, was a great movie. It did what it could to be similar to the game, without going too far in either direction. It was lightyears better than the horrible sequal they did, which I don't think he was even a part of.

I won't even comment on Event Horizon, because it has nothing to do with gaming therefore it has no real impact. You can be a great director/film-maker and still make bad movies/good movies.

In all, I still feel that P.W.S.A. could do better. He may be doing it for the love of gaming, but he's also somewhat of a hack (insofar as game movies go) and may well be doing it more for the money than for anything else. I saw Mortal Kombat and RE2 is his best game related movies, and everything else was either sub-par or so far distanced from the source that it is barely recognizable.

So yeah, he's definitely faster than Uwe Boll, but not by much.

EDIT: Oh gods, someone reminded me of AvP.. Don't get me wrong, I liked that movie (not the sequal though), but.. when I discovered that it was AvP which turned Ridley Scott and Sigourney Weaver away from the Aliens series, I was downhearted.

Well I think Poul Anderson has some talent, where Uwe Boll just isn't very good at what he does despite his practice.

That said, I would prefer to see my video game inspired movies a bit closer to the source material than either of them do. However at least with Mr. Anderson he usually turns out a decent (if not incredible) movie that could probably stand on it's own if he wasn't attaching a video game franchise to it.

Arguably I think that Mr. Anderson has some talent, he could have turned say Resident Evil into a decent zombie series by doing exactly what he did and removing all referances to the RE franchise and replacing them with his own stuff. People would scream "RE Rip off" but still sit back, watch the movies, and laud them as cult classics.

The thing is though that by tacking the "Resident Evil" name onto them he gets people to come on the off chance that someone will do their favorite game series "right", and if not they can at least talk about how it was messed up with authority.

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In defense of game-movie creators however, turning a story that can take 12-20 hours to tell via video game (omitting battles) in two hours can be difficult, regular books run into this problem when they see movie adaptions. It's especially problematic when the story is told via exploration, and things like recovered photographs, diary pages, or whatever else. The awesomeness of what you piece together on your own can't really be conveyed in a movie the same way.

That said, I think things have been getting slowly better, and that over a period of time we might see a few good video game adaptions.

Also understand that you can't just blame the directors for wanting to tack a popular gamne franchise label onto a vaguely similar franchise movie. You also need to blame those holding the liscences to the games who pimp out this permission.

See, if I had a succesful video game franchise, I might very well agree to let someone like Mr. Anderson make a movie based on it, but I'd also want to review the script and have a say in it. Assuming my franchise is successful and making money to begin with I'm going to want something out there the fans are going to approve of.

That said I think a lot of Mr. Anderson's movies have actually been fairly decent, even if they could be better.

I actually loved the FPS sequence in Doom, and I think the film would have been a lot better if it had included one more of those (and demons goddamnit, not damn mutants). It was innovative and it made an otherwise boring shootout entertaining.

On topic: I think he's better than Boll, though that's not saying much. I did like Event Horizon, but there lies the problem, he messes too much with the background of the games he adapts, if he could tone down on that a little he'd be just fine.

Couldn't stand the Resident Evil films. You don't put Kung Foo in a movie that had all the characters from the games using guns. Remember quick time events with Leon kicking them away, but never ditching his gun and pulling some matrix shit. You could of called the films anything because the only thing that was even remotely Resident Evil was the character names and the virus. So much better than it was.

All the Resident Evil films sucked a fat G virus. Not even good films if they were based off something else. Does Alice really need psychic powers, or karate chop a zombie and break it's neck. Really missed the point and just having people with guns would have been enough. Everything seems to be taken from someone who had a basic idea of Resident Evil, never played the games. Will have a bullcrap story, boring characters, ignore timelines, just have the character names, but not their personality, bingo.

People seem to forget Uwe Boll doesn't have the budget, resources or major film company backup that Anderson has.

Anyway, saying he's better than Uwe is like saying dogs droppings is better than cows drops. You don't really wanna come across either in any case. Mortal Kombat was pretty good, but the RE movies are just plain and simply horrid.

Pity as Event Horizon was such a great film, and shows he could've been a real contender for some decent storytelling.

I'm ready to gloss over most of that other junk, because Event Horizon is such an awesome film. To me it seems that making movies based off video games has been the worst move in his career.

I liked the resident evil film because of how preposterously ridiculous they were. I feel like he knows it. Look at the first 10 minutes of afterlife. Tokyo. Ok. Snipers shooting at the zombies, fine. Killed by mysterious force, interesting. Ok. Suddenly super models attacking base like ninjas. Nice. Ohmygodtheyblewuptokyo! Its just so preposterous its not only feels like the game, but its also campy to the point of enjoyment. Uwe... Just awful. No happiness. Just trauma inducing crap.

 

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