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May 04, 2004

Comments

Factory

Normally I would reflexively say that any movie based upon Cthulhu would be crap, but then again LOTR wasn't crap, which I expected it to be.
OTOH after the copyright runs out (if it ever runs out) there will eventually be someone who does a decent film out of it.

Zachary Slater

There is some pretty terrible quake (2?) machinima based on ole' cthulahoops.

Zachary Slater

Oh and, I just scored, 40.43393%

Jeffool

I scored a 32.54438%. I must admit that I feel like less of a man because of such a low score... You think that means I get bonus points?

Having been in school for a little over a year now has seriously hampered my comics buying, but there's still plenty of good stuff out there I've not gotten yet. I want to be rich for the sole purpose of buying the Peanuts collection, Lone Wolf & Cub, all the Love & Rockets books...

Man, I'll never have enough money, and I don't even like money.

Badman

I got 43%, probably beefed up by my constant DVD extras watching.

Re: Cthulhu movie: Hmmm...need to really hammer on the psychological aspect of the story, how these things really affect the mind. It would be cool if, for a while, we as viewers couldn't tell if the main protagonist was still sane or had been subverted himself.

As to actually seeing Cthulhu...I don't think we should. I mean, once he gets loose, it's really all over, which is the point. Dunno if you could make a movie that builds up all this suspense and then short-circuits it at the end (when the heroes somehow manage to disrupt and prevent the Final Summoning). But hey, it worked in the books and RPGs, so maybe it's possible.

Then, of course, there's always THIS:

http://www.tomsmithonline.com/lyrics/house_at_cthulhu_corner.htm

Mike Hommel

No way! The C is SILENT.

Eric Lulie

(Long post ahead...)

I got a 54% on the test; I never realized I was quite as geeky as I was. *shrug*

Re: Cthulhu -- as an indie film, it might work: I don't know if the big studios are going to pony up the necessary drachmas to make a movie which is quirky on so many levels:

1) You have narratives within narratives at one point; I think you can pull it off in cinema, still, IIRC, you have the main narrator relating the notes of the professor who is recounting the tale of the inspector...that could make things hairy.

2) Chthulhu has to show at some point: the 'Johansen narrative' does quite explicitly say that their boat is chased by the Big Green Guy himself once they get off the island.

3) Does anyone really have a clear idea of what the non-Euclidean geometry of the sunken city looks like? :-) I still haven't quite gotten a good visual of this...

4) The story's actually pretty grim if you think about it: there's this big entity at the bottom of the ocean which will at some point rise up and obliterate everyone; nothing you can do about it. I don't think most movie studios are going to go for that...

An indie production of CoC might pull it off, but I'm thinking their going to have to do what Dean just did, and launch a grassroots effort to try and collect at least some seed money from rabid fans (hopefully, with a disclaimer that the movie will be as faithful as possible to the book, w/o being a slavish retelling...on second thought, they may have to scratch the rabid fans from their potential donor list :-) ). Then, hopefully said indie production can use that seed money to secure the larger amounts o' capital needed to get the movie funded (although, it's possible that a grassroots fund drive could get enough money to cover the cost of production).

As long at they don't go too overboard with the CGI (Cthulhu and his environs may need CGI work, I don't know about the rest of the story...the dreams of artists may need CGI work), it shouldn't be too expensive.

Personally, I think there are better stories that would translate well to the screen: At the Mountains of Madness would be a very good fit, I'd think. Also, some of the new Mythos stuff from other author's might make for interesting screen treatments, too. (I liked Lumley's 'Return of the Deep Ones'; Campbell supposed to have some good stuff, too.)

(One negative thing I can think of, about using a story other than CoC: other movies having been released recently with similar names (Carpenter's "In the Mouth of Madness") or themes ("Dagon", a loose retelling of Shadow Over Innsmouth, which might effect any Deep One cinematic treatments) may steal some thunder...)

What might be interesting is to do a movie based on the premise, that a fictional author (and his circle of author friends) all created kind of this shared mythology, where they delighted in referencing each other's work in some of their stories, thus lending it a certain truthfulness and making the stories resonate more with their audience. The movie would follow what happens as things get out of hand (the fictional author, who had explained to those who had asked, that his stories were just storied; when he dies, the young author who takes over for him not only doesn't address this, but he puts his on particular spin on later 'unpublished' collaborations between him and the dead author). It might be interesting to make the movie entirely from the point of view of the lead author, both in life and death. As long as the creators of such a film restrained moralizing things too much, it would make for a complex character study...

Again, something best suited as an indie film, methinks...

Aside: Is anyone else worried about the CoC computer game coming out? I was kind of interested in it, when I first heard about it coming out; now, I'm not so sure. A lot of the interface choices and design decisions that the computer team has elaborated on in print seem to suggest that the story is more an exercise in "look at the kewl graphical engine we're using to tell our kewl story" and less of a "stuff is happening, what are you going to do" game. I'd hope someone making a Lovecraftian horror game would do something like Sanity's Requiem or even System Shock 2 (a sci-fi game that was effective at being creepy, I felt); what I'm seeing for Dark Corners of the Earth doesn't sound quite like what I'm hoping or expecting...

(And what really sucks is, now, that I finally have the machine to play a Dark Corners of the Earth and the cash to buy it, I'm not sure I'm going to want to buy it...:-( )

Second aside: why hasn't anyone made a game based on the more horrific elements of the World of Darkness from White Wolf (Werewolf, Mage, or Wraith)? I understand there were a couple of Vampire games released, but there are stronger horror elements in the setting...I'm surprised no one has used them yet.

Third aside: why hasn't anyone (at Atari, I'm guessing) done a good FPS based on the Ravenloft setting from D&D? I mean, in that setting, the plane that Ravenloft is in actively goes after people who are good-aligned; it might make an interesting twist in the game that not only is the bad guy out to get you, but in the very universe you're in, the universe is out to get you, too...(that sounds like a Lovecraftian theme, to my untrained ears)

Fourth aside: It's more psychologically horror-oriented, but why hasn't anyone done a game based on the Prisoner? SJG (Steve Jackson Games) had the license at some point, and Steve Jackson has said that he liked to do a computer game (with an honest computer game company to paraphrase); plus, SJG is releasing a new version of their GURPS product, so I'm sure they'd be more than happy to help anybody making a computer game based on it. And I have the GURPS Prisoner sourcebook if anyone needs help...:-) (Do I get geek points for that?)

Fifth aside: speaking of psychological horror, where are the Poe games? There've got to be at least a few stories (if not, many more) which would make a good computer game...

Eric Lulie

Hey: Bill Dugan is interviewed at Curmudgeon Gamer; he works for the same Treyarch you do, right Jamie? :-) (His Treyarch seems to be working on a Spiderman 2 game as well, so I'm guessting the answer is yes...;-) )

http://curmudgeongamer.com/article.php?story=20040430114558486

jvm

Having just listened to "At the Mountains of Madness" on (homespun) CD while on a long trip, I really think that it would be a brilliant movie. I'm also partial to "The Dunwich Horror" and "The Color Out of Space", but they're not nearly as thrilling as "Mountains of Madness."

If the X-Files were still around doing Monster of the Week episodes, I'd think that Lovecraft's body of work could supply ideas for a whole season's scripts.

Jamie Fristrom

Nope, never met this Bill Dugan person, must be some kind of parallel universe.
Just kidding. He's the man. Or one of many men. Something.

Zachary Slater

I've been to treyarch TWICE, and I never saw this mysterious "Bill Dugan", clearly this is all a part of the prolix conspiracy.

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Jamie's Bragging Rights

  • Spider-Man 2
    The best superhero games of all time Game Informer
    Top five games of all time Yahtzee Croshaw
    Top five superhero games of all time MSNBC
    Top 100 PS2 games of all time Official Playstation 2 Magazine
    1001 Games You Must Play Before You Die Nomination for Excellence in Gameplay Engineering Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences
  • Schizoid
    Penny Arcade PAX 10 Award
    Nominated for XBLA Best Original Game
    Nominated for XBLA Best Co-Op Game