With the increasing popularity of video games, film adaptations were not long in coming, according to the motto: You can build on success. Here are eight video game adaptations we think should be watched!
Video game adaptations don’t necessarily have the best reputation. If the cinematic implementation of novels is sometimes difficult (does not do justice to the template, character XY is missing, the dialogue has been shortened too much, etc.), this is especially true for those of video games. The media are actually closely related, even if the degree can certainly be disputed. On the other hand, it was not uncommon at the end of the 20th century to have a game as a merchandise for a successful film. Prominent examples include “Blade Runner”, “Aladdin”, “Dune”, “Star Wars” or the “Harry Potter” games from Lego. The whole area of gaming became so big and some titles so well known at the latest in the 90s that it was only a matter of time before films would be made the other way round,
There are now quite a few of them, well staffed and equipped with a growing budget. In this article you will find eight such video game film adaptations that are available to stream from the major streaming providers and that, in our opinion, should be seen! Some of them you may already know or have heard of – possibly negative ones. As a movie and / or video game lover, that shouldn’t stop you from taking it to heart.
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Dungeons and Dragons (2000)
Game: Dungeons and Dragons
Streaming provider: Amazon Prime Video (2.99 euros)
We’ll open the list right away with an oldie, both in terms of the video game and the film adaptation: “Dungeons & Dragons”. The game from 1974 is the classic role-playing gamepar excellence and pioneer of one of the most popular genres of all. The film by Courtney Solomon was released in 2000. In the magical empire of Izmer there is a bloody class struggle, the magical elite suppress the unmagical population. The young Empress Savina (Thora Birch) therefore wants to implement far-reaching reforms, but she is faced with strong headwinds from the archmage Profion (Jeremy Irons). He plans an intrigue to wrest the young ruler her scepter and thus the power over the golden dragons and the realm. Against this background, a group consisting of a student of magic, two thieves and a dwarf set out in the most beautiful role-playing manner to recover the second scepter over the evil red dragons so that it does not fall into the wrong hands.
The fantasy film got bad reviews of its time, and not entirely without good reason. Neither from an aesthetic nor from a narrative point of view, “Dungeons & Dragons” is a masterpiece. Fans of the old video games should still have a lot of fun with this somewhat trashy film adaptation. There was also a sequel in 2005. And: Another video game filming with this one is planned for 2022, among others with Chris Pine and Hugh Grant.
Resident Evil (2002)
Game: Resident Evil
Streaming provider: Netflix
One of the most famous video game adaptations is certainly “Resident Evil” or the series consisting of six films. In our opinion, the most worth seeing part is the first, published in 2002. The protagonist Alice (Milla Jovovich) wakes up in a gloomy villa with no memory. Little by little she has to find out how she got there and why she lost her memory. And all against the backdrop that a powerful company has secretly developed a zombie virus that was stolen and partially released by an unknown person.
The gaming template is the epitome of survival horror. During the filming, the makers succeeded above all in absorbing the gloomy mood of the game and getting the best out of the poor-story template for the medium. If you like the first part, the sequels are warmly recommended.
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (2010)
Game: Prince of Persia
Streaming provider: Disney +, Amazon Prime Video (2.99 euros)
Another well-known video game adaptation is “Prince of Persia” from 2010. In the title role, Jake Gyllenhaal cuts a fine figure as Dastan. He is a street child and is surprisingly adopted by the Persian king because of his courage and henceforth raised with his sons Tus (Richard Coyle) and Garsiv (Toby Kebbel). Years later, Dastan has grown up, the king’s army attacks the holy city of Alamut. The princes take Princess Tamina (Gemma Arterton) prisoner and Dastan falls into his hands with a dagger with magical powers, which the princess tried to protect. In the further course, the young man has to question everything and discover that he cannot trust his surroundings.
The box office results fell short of expectations, which is why the planned sequel was no longer implemented. The video game film adaptation is definitely worth seeing. The cast and scenery as well as the action scenes are great fun.
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Pokémon Detective Pikachu (2019)
Streaming provider: Netflix
One of the newest representatives on this list is “Pokémon Detective Pikachu”. Various animation adaptations have already been made based on the successful games from Nintendo. The surprisingly good real film followed in 2019. In the title and main role, of course, the most famous Pokémon in the world: Pikachu. The pocket monster works as a police officer in Ryme City, a city where Pokémon and humans live side by side. Pikachu also has a human partner, Harry Goodman (Ryan Reynolds), but since an incident in a research laboratory with the powerful Pokémon Mewtwo, he is first considered dead and then missing. With the help of his son Tim (Justice Smith), who can understand him for some inexplicable reason, he starts looking for his partner.
In the film, the mood of the game world is surprisingly well integrated, as are the special characteristics of the individual Pokémon such as the enton of the budding journalist Lucy (Kathryn Newton). An absolute recommendation for all fans of the franchise.
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Tomb Raider (2018)
Game: Tomb Raider (2013)
Streaming provider: Amazon Prime Video
After Angelina Jolie, Alicia Vikander slipped into the role of the action heroine Lara Croft in the “Tomb Raider” film from 2018. Compared to the previous films, this video game adaptation stands out clearly. Lara works as a bicycle courier in London and initially refuses to inherit her father (Dominic West), who has been missing for years. Reluctantly, she finally gives in and inherits, among other things, a secret key. This leads them to a hidden room in which he also kept the documents about his research on Queen Himiko, who is said to have had mysterious powers. Lara decides to follow in the footsteps of her father and sets off for the queen’s grave in Japan.
The film relies less on the charms of its leading actress and pithy sayings, but rather on action and a gloomy atmosphere. The style of the video game was meticulously oriented.
Warcraft: The Beginning (2016)
Game: Warcraft: Orcs & Humans
Streaming provider: Amazon Prime Video (3.99 euros)
Draenor, the homeworld of the orcs, dies. For this reason, the dark wizard Gul’dan opens a gate to Azeroth, the human world, where the “Horde” is now invading. Lothar (Travis Fimmel) tries together with a motley bunch of comrades to stop the chaos. There are also the renegade magician Khadgar (Ben Schnetzler) and the half-orkin Garona (Paula Patton).
When it came to filming one of the most famous video games of all time, a lot went wrong in advance. Postponements, marketing glitches and so on. The film fell through with the criticism, but the audience reacted much more positively – and rightly so. The video game filming is incredibly complex and lovingly detailed. A very exciting plot emerged from the thin plot of the original, and Travis Fimmel simply fits outrageously well into his role. Nothing is known about a sequel so far, but it was originally planned. The financial success gives hope in this regard.
Doom the Movie (2005)
Streaming provider: Netflix
The game “Doom” is one of the most iconic first person shooters of all time. Lots of blasts, little plot – that’s what the film adaptation with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Karl Urban and Rosamund Pike took to heart. A special command stranded in a research station on Mars. There troop has the task of eliminating alien monsters that the researchers killed.
If you don’t like shooters, you don’t like the movie either. However, if you are a fan of the template, there is a lot of action, screaming and shock moments with ugly monsters. At the end there is even a very wonderful scene from the first person perspective.
Hitman Everyone Dies Alone (2007)
Streaming provider: Netflix
The so-called agents are a deadly, laboratory-bred combat unit. Its members are identified by a barcode on the back of their heads. Agent 47 (Timothy Olyphant) is one of them. When he begins to ask questions after a series of events, he quickly ends up at the center of a conspiracy.
The same applies here: The film is primarily aimed at fans of action games. The next Hitman film “Agent 47” is also well worth seeing. There Rupert Friend plays the title role, helping the young Hannah (Katia van Dees), who herself has inexplicable powers.