The undisputed king of gaming cinematic schlock
In just the last couple of years, we’re finally seeing videogame film adaptations coming out of the dark ages. There were decades where game-to-film translations were absolutely abysmal. To be honest, I think a few more of those stinkers are in the works, but with the success of Mortal Kombat (2021), Sonic the Hedgehog 1 and 2, and especially The Super Mario Bros. Movie, we can see that people are taking these adaptations more seriously than ever.
Rewind the clock a couple decades and the cinematic landscape for game adaptations was not exactly noteworthy, to put it lightly. A lot of those game-to-movie adaptations were handled by Uwe Boll, who became infamous for his work. While Boll hasn’t done a game film in quite some time, he’s definitely got some thoughts to share on his work.
In an interview with Venturebeat, Boll opens up on the reaction to his game adaptations from both fans and critics alike. While Boll knows he created some less-than-stellar movie adaptations, he also wants to point out that the projects were successful from a monetary standpoint.
I got hit hard. Put it that way. I felt, in a way–when BloodRayne came, my third film, after House of the Dead and Alone in the Dark, I felt like people were not really watching the films. They didn’t see that they were different films. They judged every film in the same bad way. A lot of things were a little overhyped, because everyone was so excited that I got the Golden Raspberry award or whatever. A lot of critics were excited to trash them.
I watch almost all the movies coming out, and I know there were movies that were worse than mine. I never said Alone in the Dark or whatever was a masterpiece. The maximum you can say is that they had some–especially House of the Dead, they had some technical scenes that nobody had done before. They later turned into normal things. We had the Matrix setup with 300 cameras. We had a turntable, the thing where the camera spins around at 200 miles per hour. We had video game footage cut in. What other people later used, I used in 2003 with House of the Dead and got bashed for it.
On the other hand, I think what was also–the mainstream film media, what they always got wrong–on home video, all of these films sold millions of DVDs. There would be no second parts for BloodRayne or Dungeon Siege if they hadn’t generated enormous amounts of money in home video and TV. In comparison to a lot of big films made by the studios, they also weren’t so expensive. If you only spend $20 million, you can recoup that with home video. That’s what most of the films did.
I felt that it was a bit like–the Variety writers, the Hollywood Reporter writers, they always looked at box office as the biggest thing. When you look back on the last 10 years, we had so many films that didn’t even make $5 million at the box office, and they were way more expensive, with superstars. Alone in the Dark did $5.8 million. House of the Dead did $11 million.