On Friday March 14,2014, Need for Speed, a movie based on the video game by Electronic Arts, began its box office run and outperformed Tyler Perry’s Single Moms Club, and 300: Rise of an Empire. While a few films based on video games have not done so well financially, they generally perform well at the box office. Just think about the Resident Evil franchise, Angelina Jolie as Tomb Raider, Street Fighter, and Doom. For your reference, Tomb Raider performed extremely well and has made over $131 million. Undoubtedly, the main audience of Need for Speed would be men, young and old. There is just something about fast cars that has massive appeal to males.
While many film critics will scoff at the movie’s plot and acting, what aren’t laughable are the choices of cars, which include a Bugatti Veyron, a car with a price tag of $1 million. Director Scott Waugh is a car fanatic and says that he “grew up” on car flicks like Bullitt. One of the main actors, Aaron Paul, who plays the protagonist, may be recognizable as Jeremy Pinkerton, the accomplice of drug lord Walter White in the hit TV show by American Movie Channel, Breaking Bad. It is refreshing to see the rise of Mr. Paul, as America was first introduced to him in a 1999 Corn Pops cereal commercial. As a fan of films based on video games, I believe this genre improves cinema. Video games in themselves are fabulous entertainment.
They allow us to drive in fast cars, shoot at aliens, and even fight other players. Would we be able to do these things in real life? While a few might answer yes, the majority of us do not have the luxury. Unfortunately, video games have gone under scrutiny particularly for their possible psychological involvement in the Columbine Shootings. The two perpetrators, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, were said to be fans of first-person shooter video games. To hold video games responsible for violence is unreasonable, as there are millions of players who have not participated in mass public shootings.
It can be said that there are plenty of educational video games which have numerous benefits. The film crews of video game –based movies likes Need for Speed, including the brave, brave stunt drivers, must also be praised because it is a difficult task to bring a video game to life.
In the case of Need for Speed, $65 million was the total expense needed by Disney to bring the world of supercars to life. Yes, these movies may not have the best acting, soundtrack, or wardrobe, but they entertain us. Many film goers visit the box office every week because they want to forget their troubles at home or at their jobs. They don’t want to be bothered by the mundane, they just want to see a bunch of supercars race around and even fly out of planes. If these movies disappeared, film goers would be robbed of a genre which is mainly designed to thrill, regardless of how ridiculous the films are.
By Jack Lin