Just Cause Filmmakers Treat Its Source Material Like a Novel

Just Cause Filmmakers Treat Its Source Material Like a Novel

image

Videogame movies get a bad rap, but the people making the Just Cause film think that's because the writers and directors don't take the subject matter seriously.

You can count the number of good films that are based on videogames on one hand (maybe even one finger if you're extemely critical.) That's partly the fault of Uwe Boll's monstrosities, but Adrian Askarieh and Eric Eisner, producers of the upcoming film based on the Just Cause series of games from Eidos Interactive. The main character of Just Cause is Rico Rodriguez, aka The Scorpion, and he's basically a cross between James Bond and Antonio Banderas' character in Desperado. Askarieh and Eisner believe that the combination of a strong central character and great action will set the Just Cause film above other videogame movies.

"It's a great action/adventure with a strong central character," said Askariah. "Two must have elements for a good action film."

"The epic scope of the games and the Scorpion character is what fascinated me," Eisner said of why he wanted to work on the movie. "I felt that we had the building blocks to make a very good action film and one that could hopefully translate into a franchise."

But what about the bad track record that videogame movies have so far had? "I think what tends to hamper some videogame adaptations is that the people making those films are consciously aware that they are making 'videogame movies.' What is needed is for the filmmakers to treat the source material with as much gravity as one would a bestselling novel or any other source material. You have to take it seriously," Askariah said.

It is also important to not fall into the trap of trying to recreate the game experience on the silver screen, something that Eisner is well aware of. "My philosophy has always been that you need to do the right thing for the film," he said. "The videogames have already been made and they are great. But you can't deliver the same experience to the audience; otherwise they should just sit at home and play the games. You need to be true to the DNA and spirit of the game but create a film that works on its own merits."

While I didn't find the story of Just Cause 2 very compelling when I played it, I could somehow see a film adaptation working as a great action flick. The concept that the as yet untitled film will serve as an origin story for Rico. It seems like Eisner and Askarieh are in the right head place to finally pull off a decent videogame adaptation.

Source: Just Cause website

Permalink

Taking a video game that doesn't take itself seriously and taking it seriously?

My mind is, like, blown, man.

Yes, Just Cause is so deep and interesting I'm sure it'll be a stark portrayal of a man whose life is both so real and evocative while he parasails down streets using his infinitely respooling grapple gun to attach himself to vehicles. I can almost taste the moral ambiguity of America's foreign policy and the angst of a people demoralised by economic recession.

Just Cause should have just been a dumb action movie to begin with.

For a second I thought it said Antonio Banderas was playing Rico Rodriguez, and I was all excited.

That would have been perfect...

Just Cause would be a perfect action movie if it was directed by Robert Rodriguez. He doesn't take his movies very seriously. In fact his movies are parodies of action movies. Pretty much perfect for Robert Rodriguez.

What is needed is for the filmmakers to treat the source material with as much gravity as one would a bestselling novel or any other source material. You have to take it seriously

While this sounds great in theory, I think when you try to apply it to something as thoroughly ridiculous as Just Cause 2 it kinda breaks down.

The videogames have already been made and they are great. But you can't deliver the same experience to the audience; otherwise they should just sit at home and play the games. You need to be true to the DNA and spirit of the game but create a film that works on its own merits.

But this makes a whole ton of sense. Encouraging,

Ironic Pirate:
For a second I thought it said Antonio Banderas was playing Rico Rodriguez, and I was all excited.

That would have been perfect...

It really would. Do we have a leading man? If not, I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Yep, just like a book... you can tear pages out of it and skip over key sections. :-P

At least with books you have a good starting material. Just Cause 2 was fun but the story was on of the worst I have ever seen.

DaxStrife:
Yep, just like a book... you can tear pages out of it and skip over key sections. :-P

Trust nme, if you ever did that to a book and I was around, you would die a painful and brutal death. Yet it would be an elegant death, but brutal nonetheless, and made to last as long as my imagination can (and I have a pretty wide and expansive imagination...).

Books are sacred. Do not mess with the books.

For the record I was an assistant librarian in my old school, and did work experience at a public library, so... yeah.

Anyway, I think the people behind this idea have it right, and that's definitely the right way to go about making good videogame movie adaptations. It's just a shame they picked the wrong game to talk about when discussing being 'serious', given what Just Cause is all about, but never mind that. Besides, I still think that doing a Just Cause movie in the style of The Expendables would be the best way to go about things and would lead to a really good film version of the game to boot. I actually quite enjoyed The Expendables, by the way, because it was an action film that deliberately didn't take itself seriously and just went all out with the action and humour to the point where you didn't even care about the plot, because it was just a fun film to watch anyway. That's the sort of direction the Just Cause movie-makers need to be going in. Aside from that? They're completely spot on :D.

megs1120:
Just Cause should have just been a dumb action movie to begin with.

Agreed, it should be cheesy like Army Of Darkness, Shoot Em Up, Kick Ass kinda fun cheesy (with plenty of oneliners). I want Rico to throw an airdrop beacon into a group of ninjas during a gun fight and then a 4x4 drops ontop of the group of said ninjas, Rico then quips "Special Delivery." and then he drives into a building saves the girl and parachutes off the mountain with his woman in his arms.

D0WNT0WN:

megs1120:
Just Cause should have just been a dumb action movie to begin with.

Agreed, it should be cheesy like Army Of Darkness, Shoot Em Up, Kick Ass kinda fun cheesy (with plenty of oneliners). I want Rico to throw an airdrop beacon into a group of ninjas during a gun fight and then a 4x4 drops ontop of the group of said ninjas, Rico then quips "Special Delivery." and then he drives into a building saves the girl and parachutes off the mountain with his woman in his arms.

Hell yeah!

What are the odds of that... we finally get a couple directors that UNDERSTAND how to make a good video game movie, and they're making a Just Cause movie. WTF.

They should be doing Uncharted.

Hey look, it's tag lines from people who want cred with gamers.

As long as the movie never to take itself seriously, this could possibly be the best video game movie ever. Although, while Uwe Boll movies have been worse than the fucking plague, Postal was actually good...mainly because there was no way to screw it up if you made it as unPC as possible.

Ironic Pirate:
For a second I thought it said Antonio Banderas was playing Rico Rodriguez, and I was all excited.

That would have been perfect...

Same here. Would be kinda ironic if he actually did end up playing Rico.

They find a game that doesn't take it's self seriously and take it seriously so as to make a movie?

I'll buy it...

Psh, screw the story. Just blow stuff up!

megs1120:
Just Cause should have just been a dumb action movie to begin with.

I agree, it has the potential to succeed as an action movie ( with the right director and actors of course ) but I still like it as a game too

Nope, it's still going to suck.

Yeah, honestly I agree with the guy's points about what you need to make a good action movie, but I think in this case, Just Cause's theatrical adaptation would have been much, much better suited to a totally psychotic and random explosion-fest. I mean, that's all the games are. You can't sit there for half a second and tell me that any of the characters or the story behind JC2 were at all interesting or engaging. It doesn't exactly hide it's true nature of "go anywhere and blow up everything there" behind a Homer-like epic. :\

Edit: Like the poster above me said though, it's going to suck regardless.

Why the hell do we need a Just Cause film when we already have Crank 1 and 2?

They're going to make Just Cause into a movie?
If it could somehow work, that would be sweet.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here