Frequently, I’ll be surfing the web, or talking with a friend, or maybe over-hearing a conversation, when I will read/hear something that I find annoying; someone saying something to the extent of “Hollywood sucks! Nowadays, all they do are sequels, prequels, remakes, and adaptions of comics, video games, television shows, and amusement park rides!”, or “Hollywood sucks! All of their modern films stink compared to the classics! And those special effects are soooo overdone!”.
I don’t agree with this viewpoint, and I will address this with three points.
Point 1: The Remake/Sequel/Adaption Complaint
I see many complaints on forums and message boards saying that Hollywood is going creatively bankrupt. After all, there are times when over 50% of the films in theaters aren’t original films. People think this is a problem, but I ask…..why? Is that really a bad thing?
Just because a film isn’t original, doesn’t mean that it won’t be good. Some people have this elitist attitude, and claim that sequels are “inferior” to original ideas. Spare me. There is no shame in being a sequel or adaption. In fact, get this: Rotten Tomatoes has a list of “Top 100 Movies of All Time”, which you can read here. And in the top 5, one is a sequel, two are book adaptions, and one is based on a true event. Yup.
There are many non-original movies that have received great recognition. Toy Story 2 and 3 are now hailed as some of the best animated films of all time, receiving Oscar awards. The 1954 adaption of Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea received 3 Oscar nominations, winning two, and has a score of 89 on RT. Aliens, the sequel to Alien, got even better critical reviews, and was nominated for seven Academy Awards, while the original only received 2 nominations.
That is why I find it ridiculous when people immediately bash Hollywood for producing all these sequels. Some people are hypocritical, too. One second, they’ll be eagerly awaiting a sequel, and the next, they’re begging for a new idea. But Hollywood can balance it. Sure, there are many sequels, but also many new ideas, which leads to the next point.
Point 2: The Lack of Original Movies Complaint
People love to point out that nowadays, Hollywood doesn’t pump out as many original films as they used to. This may be true, but not as much as you might think. Part of the reason is that there are many classic films that people actually don’t know aren’t original.
I will use Jurassic Park as an example. I’ll bet that over half of the people who watched the film didn’t know that it was based off a novel. Or how about Planet of the Apes? Did you know that it was an adaption of a French novel? Even Spielberg’s Jaws film is based off a 1974 book. And let’s not forget Mary Poppins!
You see now? Even back in the 60s and earlier, Hollywood had plenty of films that were based off various media, but there were also plenty of original ideas. Hey, like nowadays!
There are plenty of modern, quality, and original films. For horror buffs, 2011 saw the release of Insidious, which received positive reviews, and this year, You’re Next was released, and now people are calling it one of the best slasher films in years! In 2011, Black Swan was released, and met with awards and great word-of-mouth.
Other recent original films include Inception, an intense, mind-boggling thriller, Pacific Rim, which is every fanboy’s dream come true, Looper, a complex time-travel story, The Tree of Life, a very odd, spiritual film, and Elysium, a sci-fi epic.
There are many others, but there you have it! Hollywood is not running out of ideas! There may be more adaptions and sequels, but that doesn’t matter AS LONG AS THEY’RE GOOD! Which leads to point 3.
Point 3: Over-All Modern Quality Complaint
Finally, my final argument, which is against the fact that Hollywood’s over-all quality has dropped. I don’t think so, necessarily. There are really crummy films in every generation, and there are also films destined to become classics in every generation. And this goes for all genres.
While some people may point to, say, the upcoming One Direction: This is Us concert film, I’ll point to the 1980 AC/DC: Let There Be Rock concert film. And don’t forget Spice World! Concert films based on popular (at the time) bands are nothing new, folks.
Some people might point out that nowadays, Hollywood uses too much FX in their films, and that they put that over quality. That can be the case, but not always. For every Transformers, there is also Oblivion or Elysium. And frankly, there is nothing wrong with giving an action film realistic effects. There are plenty of old action films that don’t hold up anymore because of effects that haven’t aged well, such as Tron, while films such as Jurassic Park still hold up, in part due to effects that still hold up. If the dinosaurs began to look fake, that could possibly take away from the film.
Still, people persist and say that modern films are garbage, and that older films are all automatically great. Heh. Compare The Dark Knight to any 90s or sooner Batman film. See the difference? Compare Green Lantern (which isn’t even a great film) to Supergirl? Not to mention that many old films lack the punch that they may have had at the time. Back in the day, seeing E.T. ride a bike in the sky wowed audiences. Nowadays, that’s nothing to the wonders of Pandora in Avatar.
Not that I have anything against older films! Many of them are among my favorites. I’m just saying that I’m tired of people bashing Hollywood right now. The idea that people still have the audacity to complain when we get films like Avengers, which many people are already calling the Greatest Action and/or Comic Book Movie of All Time, makes me sad.
Next time you hear someone whining about the quality of the films coming out, ask them if the original Captain America or Judge Dredd films hold up to 90% of moderns action films.