Video game movies just seem to not work. From the historically bad Super Mario Bros to the decent Prince of Persia they all just don’t grab the attention they should. It seems like a perfect media to translate onto the big screen, there is already a loyal fan base, characters that have a deep background and a world that has deep lore, but for some reason they just all fail. But I believe if a Bioshock movie ever comes to fruition it can buck this trend and here is why.
Bioshock Infinite has some of the most fleshed out characters in recent gaming. Booker Dewitt and Elizabeth are characters the player relates with gets behind and is intrigued with. This is an issue that most video game movies have had. Most video game movies that have been made are off franchises with not very deep characters. Mario is one of the most recognizable faces in the world, but not many people outside of video game fans would want to see him for two hours on the big screen. There is no depth to Mario, nothing that drives him and if they tried adding depth most people would cry foul.
Irrational Games has proven they can develop characters that people sympathize with and want to get to know, and I believe they can do this easily for a movie. The characters in the Bioshock movie won’t be cookie cutter, they will make you think just like Booker Dewitt and Comstock did in Bioshock Infinite, but more importantly they will make you want to know more about them.
Bioshock and Bioshock: Infinite both have two of the most intriguing worlds in not just video games but in all media. Exploring the underwater city of Rapture and the city in the sky, Columbia, are two of the most enthralling experiences in recent gaming.
Both cities beckoned for you to explore, take your time and to learn all there was about the city. Not only were the cities exciting and intriguing they were thoroughly thought out. Irrational Games took the time to make you believe that there could be a city in the sky or under the water. Around ever turn there was something new, but not so over the top that it wasn’t believable. From rain water beaches to elevators that worked by way of water, it all was believable and so intriguing. You wanted to see what was around that next corner.
These worlds would be the biggest draw to the Bioshock movie. Imagine seeing a trailer panning over a real life rapture or Columbia. This is a world that people would want to explore. It would be the hook that pulls non-gamers in. How does the city float? How do these people survive underwater? More than a few people would want to figure these mysteries out, and I believe that these worlds can translate seamlessly to the movie screen.
Just as in the video game world gameplay is the ultimate decider; story is the ultimate decider in the movie world. No matter how many special effects there are and how cool the characters are if the story is terrible the movie is terrible, and this is where Bioshock excels.
Bioshock is a story driven game, the whole reason you continue to fend off wave after wave of enemies is so that you can get that next piece of the puzzle. With most of the video games that are turned into movies the story isn’t as strong a driver as in Bioshock or as deep.
Bioshock: Infinite’s ending makes you think, it doesn’t hold your hand and give you what you want. It expects you to use your brain and to figure out what is going on, and if the Bioshock movie doesn’t shy away from this I believe it can be a success.
We as gamer’s deserve a good video game movie. There are amazing characters and stories to be shared and that we would love to see come to life. All it takes is one good video game movie and others will follow, Bioshock can be that movie as long as studio treats the project right.