Five Of The Best Video Game Adaptations On The Big Screen
The history of bringing games to the screen (big or small) is chequered, to say the least. For some reason, movie studios have failed to replicate the magic has so many gamers enthralled, no matter how much money is thrown at it.
Gaming is a multibillion-dollar industry in all of its forms, from PlayPhone games to immersive console adventures, it’s no wonder the film industry wants to tap into this market. With the internet all of a flutter over the upcoming HBO adaptation of The Last Of Us, it might be time to start getting your hopes up again about a worthy screen adaptation.
So here’s what it has to live up to so far, with the best video game adaptations on the screen.
Image via screengrab
OK, so there might be some argument that this is a book adaptation rather than a game one, but the Netflix Original starring Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia, a mutant monster hunter, and his adventures, was one of the most-watched shows on Netflix (until Bridgerton came along). High production values and some pretty good reviews have guaranteed at least another series. Cavill himself is huge gamer. And it’s clear that while they have drawn from the original book series, this adaptation of The Witcher is one that owes a lot to the game.
Pikachu is looking for something to stream, too! Image via Warner Bros. Pictures
A live-action version of Detective Pikachu with Ryan Reynold’s voicing had catastrophe written all over it. However, the movie turned out to be enjoyable, if a little sentimental, comedy with quite a few laughs to be had. The Pokémon universe is one rife with cartoons and other adaptations, but this live-action take on the franchise was funnier, sweeter, and more exciting than many fans expected.
Tomb Raider (2018)
Image via Warner Bros.
While it’s Angelina Jolie who is best remembered in the role of the aristocratic adventurer Lara Croft, the 2018 version starring Alicia Vikander was a much-underrated reboot. The movie takes more from the games than it does from the previous two films. Vikander plays a much more rounded version of Croft and the movie did well enough to get the green light for a sequel to be directed by Ben Wheatley.
Capcom Panned by critics when it was released, Resident Evil became an instant cult classic that has spawned a number of (lesser) sequels. Based on the classic Japanese game of the same name by Capcom, it stars Milla Jovovich as a former covert specialist who battles through a zombie apocalypse caused by an unscrupulous corporation.
Image via HBO Max.
Instant cult B-movie classic, Mortal Kombat got a 2021 reboot, but the original will always have a place in the heart of gamers. The 1995 version is heavy on action and cheesy lines but is fairly faithful to its source material compared to most adaptations. Starring Christopher Lambert, Talisa Soto, Robin Shou, and Linden Ashby, the plot is fairly simple. The best fighter from each realm has to fight to the death in a tournament.
While gamers have almost given up hope of great game adaptations, there is still some hope. We’re still living in the golden age of television. Platforms like HBO, Netflix, and Amazon are throwing a lot of money at original programming, and if HBO’s The Last Of Us performs well, we’ll likely see a bit of a gold rush as the others swoop in to pick up the rights to the most popular games.