Hot on HuffPost Tech:

See More Stories
AOL Tech

10 Video Games That Should Be Made Into Movies



Video games rarely make a successful transition to the big screen. Most are box-office bombs, and game fans lambaste every shot, frame, and scene via blogs and message boards. They can't bear to see something they love turned into an unrecognizable disaster starring Jean-Claude Van Damme ('Street Fighter,' anyone?). So why does Hollywood keep churning them out? Simple. Gamers comprise an extremely devoted fan base that could net film studios a fortune, if only they could get the formula right.

We at Switched venture to believe that some video games would make first-class flicks with the right directors and casts. The intricate plots, slick-cut scenes, and unforgettable characters in many of today's titles are begging for the silver-screen treatment. Don't forget old 8-bit classics, either. After the jump, we make our elevator pitch for why each of these 10 games should be made into a film, complete with director and casting suggestions. So listen up, Hollywood! We're here to help.


1) 'Devil May Cry' (Capcom/2001)

The Pitch: One of the slickest action games ever, 'Devil May Cry' follows demon hunter Dante's quest to avenge his family's deaths at the hands of Mundus, king of all demons. While the plot isn't genius, the highly stylized visuals and fast-paced gameplay could provide great jumping-off points for an ambitious director.

The Director: Zack Snyder has already proven he can helm films derived from the graphic novels '300' and 'Watchmen,' so we think a video game adaptation wouldn't be much of a stretch, especially since this game has already spawned comic books and action figures.

The Cast: Emile Hirsch could be a nice fit for Dante. He was the saving grace of the saccharine 'Speedracer', and 'Lords of Dogtown' proves that this guy has acting chops. And he's athletic, too. 'Hellboy' actor Ron Perlman could play Mundus with ease.



2) 'Metal Gear Solid' (Konami/1998)

The Pitch: Solid Snake creeps and fights his way through an Alaskan facility holding massive nuclear weapons that are poised to devastate the world. The game can move slowly, since it requires stealth, so our pitch calls for playing up the action parts -- like the gunfight between Snake and his eyepatch-wearing nemesis Ocelot, and Snake's battle with the helicopter flown by his twin brother. We'd add a little romance, too; think the 'Bourne' trilogy.

The Director: It seems like anything J.J. Abrams touches becomes pop-culture gold. From the television series 'Lost' to his recent 'Star Trek' reboot, Abrams has proven he can appeal to both fanboys and the masses.

The Cast: With 'The Dark Knight,' Christian Bale has shown he can carry an action film, and he also has the acting pedigree to make critics take Solid Snake seriously. We'd like to see him reunited with Gotham co-star Maggie Gyllenhaal, playing Snake's love interest, Meryl.



3) 'Bioshock' (2K Games/2007)

The Pitch: One of the most visually stunning games in quite some time, 'Bioshock' is a first-person shooter set in an underwater city called Rapture that itself is begging for the big-screen treatment. But there's also a dystopian plot about engineering and biotechnology that would resonate with audiences in our hyper-techy world.

The Director: Darren Aronofsky's visuals -- in films such as 'The Fountain' -- make our eyes melt every time. There have been reports that 'Pirates of the Caribbean' director Gore Verbinski is set to direct a version of 'Bioshock', but we fear that he would turn it into a mindless action romp. Aronofsky always brings humanity to his films.

The Cast: We'd pick doe-eyed Jake Gyllenhaal as the plane-wrecked protagonist, Jack. He's a fine actor who adds a touch of humanity to every role, and he would bring the ladies in droves. For evil mobster Frank Fontaine, we'd like to see Daniel Craig let loose his dark side.



4) 'The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time' ( Nintendo/1998)

The Pitch: The plot might not be revolutionary, but it's all in the execution. Classic good guy Link must rescue the beautiful princess of Hyrule (Zelda) from the evil villain Gannondorf. Along the way, he battles all sorts of cinematic creatures, monsters, and ghouls, while collecting precious gems and traveling with one of the most beloved video-game pets ever.

The Director: Peter Jackson is the obvious choice, but we're going instead with Guillermo del Toro, creator of fantasy masterpiece 'Pan's Labyrinth.' We think del Toro is the only man who could bring our favorite creatures (from the cavern-dwelling, rock-throwing Gorons to the fire-breathing, lizard-like Dodongos) to life -- just like he did with the child-eating Pale Man in 'Pan's Labyrinth.'

The Cast: He might be getting a little older, but Leonardo DiCaprio would do well as Link. He has the capability to pull off action and romance scenes with equal style and grace. The pixie-like and talented Evan Rachel Wood could easily portray the elven princess Zelda.



5) 'Castlelvania' (Konami/1987)

The Pitch: Between 'Twilight' and 'True Blood,' the undead are hot these days. So what better time to adapt this vampire-slaying series? We recommend starting with the first game, in which hunk Simon Belmont -- all golden hair and washboard abs -- makes his way through Dracula's castle while whipping bats, vamps, and other monsters.

The Director: Based on his zombie-killing work in 'Grindhouse,' Robert Rodriguez has the manic flair that could bring some balls-to-the-wall action to life. We want to see a campy version -- loaded with over-the-top gore, sexy women, and obvious jokes a la 'Planet Terror.' Rodriguez could tap his buddy, Quentin Tarantino, for help writing sharp dialogue to punctuate the action.

The Cast: Newcomer Ryan Reynolds could pull off the role of Simon Belmont, who is both handsome, built, and clumsy. Gary Oldman nailed the Dracula role once, so why not a reprise?


6) 'The Oregon Trail' (Don Rawitsch, Bill Heinemann, Paul Dillenberger/1985)

The Pitch: How can an educational game make this list? Just hear us out. Imagine a period piece that follows one settler family's treacherous journey from Missouri to Oregon. Supplies run low, sickness strikes, and weather worsens each day. We think there's potential for a bona-fide Oscar-winning drama.

The Director: We recommend Terrence Malick for his ability to capture landscape like no one else in such flicks as 'The New World' and 'Badlands.' The setting would be the real star in this film, and Malick is one of the few directors who would understand that.

The Cast: For pure talent, especially in historical dramas, there's no better leading man than 'There Will Be Blood' star Daniel Day Lewis.



7) 'Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas' (Rockstar North/2004)

The Pitch: We can just hear the soundtrack now: gunfire and classic California hip-hop. Carl 'CJ' Johnson returns home to find out who killed his momma. Of course, there's plenty of murder, drug dealing, and sex with prostitutes along the way. Don't expect anything less than an R-rating for this one.

The Director: Brian De Palma directed 'Scarface' -- a film that's served as a role model for hip-hop culture. We'd like to see him bring the gangster tale up to date in this portrayal of the violent West Coast drug trade.

The Cast: Terrence Howard wowed us as a hard-luck gangster with hip-hop dreams in 'Hustle and Flow.' He'd bring credibility and depth to a role that could easily be ruined by casting some one like a Wayans brother.



8) 'Fallout 3' (Bethesda Game Studios/2008)

The Pitch: Alright, 'Fallout 3' is an open-ended game that could easily spiral all over the screen. But this title is screaming for a film debut, and apocalypse tales are always in fashion. It's the year 2277, and nuclear war has devastated America. You are one of the few survivors in an underground vault. After your father vanishes, you escape and explore the gorgeously haunting post-apocalyptic landscape looking for him and battling nuclear mutants.

The Director: The Coen Brothers could run wild with this sprawling adventure. And their trademark mix of humor and terror fits the tongue-in-cheek style of the franchise. Besides, we've never seen a Coen Brothers film we didn't like.

The Cast: The great thing about 'Fallout 3' is the ability to personalize your character. As a possible male lead, we suggest Viggo Mortensen because we can't get that trailer for 'The Road' -- another great post-apocalyptic work -- out of our head. For a female star, who other than 'Underworld' heroine Kate Beckinsale -- a beauty who wouldn't be afraid to whip mutant ass?


9) 'Final Fantasy VII' (Squaresoft/1997)

The Pitch: Yes, we remember 'Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children.' But we want live-action, not a CG, halfway sequel to the game. The title follows Cloud Strife, a guy with spiky yellow hair and an oversized sword, on a quest with his friends to stop the evil Shin-Ra corporation from destroying the planet. Relevant to today's warming, over-exploited globe? We think so.

The Director: This film would require the huge budget that only a big-time director like Spielberg could pull off. Spielberg has flubbed films in the past, but we're willing to give him another shot. We'd love to see his take on the super hi-tech gadgets, monsters, and magic that are staples of the 'Final Fantasy' world.

The Cast: Admittedly he's a goofball at times, but Shia LaBeouf is a favorite of Spielberg. Having carried the successful 'Transformers' films, he could do a fine job as Cloud Strife. Because sex sells, we'd cast Angelina Jolie as Tifa Lockhart, Cloud's childhood friend and companion on this epic journey to save the world.



10) 'inFamous' (Sucker Punch Productions/ 2009)

The Pitch: What action-loving moviegoer wouldn't rush to see this new tale of a man named Cole McGrath, with electric super powers, roaming around a devastated city? And it has the perfect plot twist: Turns out McGrath is the guy who was -- unknowingly -- carrying the bomb. Tension mounts as he discovers the sinister plot while battling his way through a crumbling city full of gangs, thieves, and just-plain-bad folks. Set this film in New York (like 'I Am Legend,' but actually worth two cents), and you've got a hit.

The Director: Alfonso Cuarón had our mouths watering while watching 'Children of Men.' His cinematography perfectly captured the post-apocalyptic landscape, and we'd like to see what he could do with New York City.

The Cast: With a solid performance in this year's 'Terminator Salvation,' plus upcoming roles in 'Avatar' and a 'Clash of the Titans' reboot, Sam Worthington is the rising action hero this film needs. He's tough, fit, and ladies love him. An under-the-radar actor would be a good choice for an adaptation of this new video game. Pair low expectations with a solid performance, and you've got the sleeper sensation of the summer.

Tags: features, movies, top

Comments

54