Wednesday, June 8, 2011

30 Day Movie Challenge: Day 24

            I decided to do the 30 day movie challenge as a blog series as it ties into my blog activities rather easily and I am once again not blogging my usual series with regularity in spite of saying that I would.
            Today is "A Movie that I wish would be remade".  This will probably rankle a few nerds, but I will stand by it.  Every once in a while a concept comes a long that is really cool.  Do to a combination of personality and vagueness the movie takes on a mystique that allows not only initial success but long term cult following that makes it into a classic.  Other times an idea comes along, and is closed too soon and left without proper exploration, and try as the creators might they cannot construct a franchise having killed a vibrant idea in its infancy.  So through retroactive continuity they shift things around, reset the setting, and eventually run the thing in to the ground with illogical nonsense.  To this end, I want them to call a mulligan on "Highlander".

"There can be only one"... Words that basically described all of the sequels.
             This film is a lot of fun.  The flashes into the distant past and the character building work so well that when the fight scenes roll around, you forgive the lame choreography because even though that is what the movie is about... It's not what the movie is about.

I asking you one more time.  Where is the fucking bathroom?!
             I like to think of "Highlander" as a series of ideas and philosophies and cultural influences competing, they can only be killed when they are no longer thought about (cutting off their head), but the ideas and influences of these things live on (through the quickening, the lightning that escapes an immortals body when they are decapitated, the power entering the body of the winning immortal).  It is a cool metaphor for the struggle of ideas through the ages, hence why you have a Scottish actor playing an Egyptian, pretending to be a Spaniard, who fights with a Japanese sword, levels of multicultural influences.  Hell, the main protagonist, MacLeod is an antiques dealer, gathering, preserving, and honoring the world and ideas of the past, drawing strength from them.  All of this stands in stark contrast to the physical manifestation of barbarism and brutality, the Kurgan who is the films central antagonist.

Clancy Brown would be hard to replace.
             The first"Highlander" is good, so good that it shouldn't have ended there, and sadly it did, all of the sequels were sub par, and while I liked the cheesy live action TV show... It was a cheesy live action TV show that doesn't measure up to the potential a big budget adaptation would promise.

Though the TV show had a sword fighting expert as the protagonist and it did a lot to make the show very strong in the action department.  He really wasn't a bad actor either.
             I want a real trilogy, with a substantive arching story that is plotted and written before shooting starts with a cast that is both recognizable, and respectful of the material, no Anthony Hopkins phoning in a "Wolf-Man" level performance like he is popping Valium between takes.

            So, what would I change?  Well, the title for one.  Naming your movie after the central protagonist, or for that matter a nickname of the protagonist makes the movie tied to him/her and makes it difficult to give the other characters their own place in the narrative, imagine if "Star Wars" was called "Skywalker", it is a cool name, but it overshadows in an instant the other people in the narrative.  So let's change "Highlander" to "Immortals" or "The Quickening", or even "Who Wants to Live Forever" for a salute to the spectacular Queen music that litters this thing like the smell of beer permeates the air of an aluminum can recycling facility.

            I would also have more immortals in the narrative, there are only 5 in the movie, one of which exists only in the starting action scene before biting it, and another only in flashback.  While I don't think the movie should be swimming with them, having a multi film format to work with you could have more of them, some women and more minorities too, maybe an actual Egyptian actor playing Ramirez.

Not that Sean didn't have the charisma to pull off playing any god damn thing he ever wanted to.
             And the fight scenes.  Let's not go all George Lucas on them and have them be way too long and choreographed, but we can certainly do better than the ones in the original film, which are only slightly better than two kids wailing on one another with wrapping paper tubes.

            Who would I cast?  Well, that is the thing, I don't have a dream cast because I want them to change a lot and then cast the thing.  So... Whoever is good for the part?  And let's have David Fincher direct, just because.

I did "Fight Club" and "The Social Network", I can pull off "Guys With Swords".
             If you liked my take on this movie, please click the Google "+1 " button in the comments section, post the link on your facebook, or send people over from anywhere else you might social network.

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