For the past few years, I’ve reviewed pretty much every single video game movie I could. So what have I learned about watching so many video game movies? Well, this is one of the worst sub-genres you could get into. That said, there are actually a couple of them that are watchable and while I wouldn’t go out of my way to recommend them to friends or people online, you could do worse than with the movies below. Before reading the list, you should know that these are all live-action movies, so documentaries (Indie Game: The Movie), animated films (Final Fantasy: Advent Children) or movies that revolve around video games as a concept (Tron, The Last Starfighter) are not part of the list.
Dead Rising: Watchtower exclusively came out on Sony’s free streaming service, Crackle for everyone to watch. Although this is a predictable and generic zombie movie, fans of the genre will enjoy it. The movie (set between Dead Rising 2 and Dead Rising 3,) follows reporter Chase Carter and a camerawoman as they investigate a quarantined area in East Mission, Oregon. But there’s a sudden zombie outbreak which the government can’t contain and spreads all over town. Watchtower was successful enough to receive a sequel known as Dead Rising: Endgame. All the qualities of its predecessor are all but gone in this boring second part.
If you absolutely have to watch a Resident Evil movie, you should watch the first one. Although there aren’t that many elements from the games, this movie has some energetic moments and dumb action sequences. There’s nothing particularly original about the plot (an amnesic woman called Alice finds herself trapped in a complex with a homicidal AI and hundreds of zombies,) but there’s a lot of violence and action which makes it bearable to watch. I can’t say the same about the rest of the Resident Evil movies.
Mortal Kombat is the kind of video game movie that knows that it’s dumb and puts that to great use. So as long as you keep your expectations in check and don’t mind bad acting, poor special effects and some silly moments, you’ll be fine. In fact, I would go as far as to recommend this movie just so that you listen to that theme song a couple of times.
There’s nothing extraordinary about the Tomb Raider movie, but this is a serviceable action-packed popcorn movie that’s all about intricate choreographic and visiting exotic locations all over the world. The premise is somewhat silly (the movie follows Lara Croft as she tries to retrieve ancient artifacts from the Illuminati,) but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy every minute of it. It’s sequel (titled Lara Croft: The Cradle of Life) is also worth watching, but it’s sillier in tone and not as entertaining as you’d expect.
1. Silent Hill
I know being a Silent Hill fan is not one of the best thing in the world (there’s not an upcoming Silent Hill game in sight and P.T. will probably never become a game of its own,) but at least the series got one of the best and most loyal film adaptations. It may not be the most memorable horror film ever made, but as far as atmosphere and cinematography goes, Silent Hill deliver.