Some video game movies have earned acclaim, like Free Guy, and filmmakers have had a large pool of stories to pull from when adapting games. However, other video game movies can fail to impress fans and often get lost in translation. Unfortunately, these video games should have stayed in their playable format.
It can be difficult to create a successful live-action adaptation when the source material is so popular. As such, video game movies can miss the mark, whether the film bombed due to changing original storylines or leaving out the most important characters.
10 The World Could Have Gone Without Live-Action Super Mario Bros
The live-action film based on the Super Mario Bros. games was released in 1993. The filmmakers seemingly went for a more adult and serious take on the family-friendly IP and sprinkled tidbits of humor throughout the movie. However, that approach wasn’t well-received.
Super Mario Bros. was littered with glaringly inaccurate portrayals and none of the color or fun that made the games so popular. From awkward dialogue to a hyper-realistic Yoshi and humanoid Goombas, audiences can only hope the upcoming animated film will undo the missteps of the 1993 movie.
9 Ready Player One Is Fun But Ambitious
While Ready Player One is based on a novel, it remains within the realm of video games. Readers were already conflicted about the book itself, but the film gave the story a chance to prove its worth. The plot prides itself on pop culture references throughout, so it seems befitting to have had Steven Spielberg – who is something of a pop-culture king – direct Ready Player One.
Though Ready Player One is thrilling, the characters tend to get lost in the chaos of the competitive game. The overwhelming number of pop culture tie-ins and bland character development cause the film to lose what makes the original story feel special.
8 Lara Croft Deserves Better Than The 2001 Film
Though 2001’s Lara Croft: Tomb Raider served its purpose as a fun video game film, it did little to bring the same sense of adventure that players get in the video games. Lara Croft: Tomb Raider remains a staple in the hearts of many fans simply for its silly dialogue and for bringing Croft to the big screen.
However, Lara Croft is a far more interesting character than the filmmakers gave her credit for. While it’s fascinating to see Angelina Jolie working alongside her father, Jon Voight, the script gave the actors minimal to work with.
7 House Of The Dead Is Forgettable
The House of the Dead is a shooter arcade game that revolves around fighting armies of the undead, and a newer version has been released for home consoles. Though House of the Dead has been praised for providing some fun as a light-gun shooter video game, it’s not particularly unique, and the same can be said for its film adaptation.
The House of the Dead movie focuses on a group of college students who are stranded on an island full of zombies. Unfortunately, scenes of the actual game were layered onto live-action fight scenes, which were not well-received elements of the film. The House of the Dead film feels like an unfortunate product of its time, from the strange editing to uninteresting characters.
6 Hitman Works Better As A Video Game
The Hitman films tried their best to make a series of intriguing stealth games fun to watch as films, but they struggled to translate the games onto the silver screen. Players understand that 47 is meant to be an unseen and mysterious character, but the film almost missed that point entirely.
Hitman leans heavily into the action of the games, the characters are dull, and the films make several alterations to 47’s backstory. Unfortunately, it feels as if the filmmakers failed to understand the intrigue of the games.
5 Rampage Took Itself Too Seriously
Rampage is based on a 1986 arcade game that put players in control of oversized monsters that are storming through cities and fighting off militant forces. While the game’s plot was fairly simple, the film had every opportunity to deviate and create something unique.
As ridiculous as the storyline seems, the Rampage movie fails to understand what it wants to be. Audiences might enjoy all the explosions and outrageous destruction that is prevalent in this film, but Rampage isn’t as fun as its source material. Unfortunately, the movie only earns itself 51% on Rotten Tomatoes with an average rating of 5.3/10.
4 Mortal Kombat: Annihilation Couldn’t Top Its Predecessor
Like many sequels, Mortal Kombat: Annihilation struggled to one-up its predecessor. Despite the low expectations set by 1995’s Mortal Kombat, Annihilation didn’t make it past the 5% mark on Rotten Tomatoes.
The cheesy special effects couldn’t be attested to the low budget because the first Mortal Kombat film seemed to have better effects than Annihilation, which had a higher budget. While the first Mortal Kombat film was a welcome take on the treasured martial arts games, the sequel had too many over-the-top and cringe-worthy moments.
3 Assassin’s Creed Missed The Point Of The Games
Fans couldn’t be more thrilled to see a beloved game series brought to the big screen. Sadly, Assassin’s Creed fell short in pleasing both gamers and casual audiences. For an established fanbase, the film had the opportunity to expand on what makes the games so interesting.
Players enjoy the stealthy action sequences of the film. However, Assassin’s Creed suffered because it didn’t utilize the historical settings that it should have focused on. The movie created an original, visually stunning story, but it was too slow and relied heavily on the confusing connection between the main character and his ancestor.
2 Silent Hill: Revelation Couldn’t Beat The First Movie
Though the first Silent Hill film was poorly received by critics and audiences alike, the direct sequel proves to be an even bigger disappointment. Silent Hill: Revelation is riddled with constant contradictions that break it apart from the original.
Revelation struggles to balance itself as it switches between Heather Mason’s world, the dreamlike realm of Silent Hill, and its heavier reliance on 3D effects. Instead of attempting to undo the imperfections of the first Silent Hill movie, Revelation failed to usurp its already low-rated predecessor.
1 Welcome To Raccoon City Suffered From A Lack Of Confidence
When Resident Evil: Welcome To Raccoon City was developed, the franchise was given a second chance to bring the games to life. Although Raccoon City proved identical to the first two games in terms of setting and characters, something felt off.
The budget constraints were apparent with the subpar special effects and dry script, and the film even opted for rubber masks instead of convincing makeup for the infected. The smaller budget could excuse some questionable creative choices, but the decision to squeeze two games into one film might have hindered the end product, which could have been great.