It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Genre

The Santa of Cinema has packed his bag with a number of SF, Fantasy, and Horror offerings. While we await forthcoming reviews/discussions of Beowulf and the latest Heroes, I thought I’d invite responses to the Hollywood visions that soon might dance in our heads.

Alien vs Predator: Requiem (December 25, 2007): Spend Christmas watching rival species duke it out in a Midwestern town. The title implies this will be the last, but I expect that will be decided by box office returns.

Alvin and the Chipmunks (December 14, 2007): This looks like another raping of childhood memories in an effort to spin a big-budget franchise from a property with a built-in market. But I’ve been wrong before. Alvin and the boys have been dressed as suburban gangsta posers.

The Breed (January 25, 2008): Teens discover they’ve picked the wrong island for their campout.

Cloverfield (January 18, 2008): This J.J. Abrams’ film has generated considerable internet buzz. Rumors of Lovecraft and Kaiju abound, and the film features some excellent apocalyptic imagery (recalling both fears generated by 9-11 and the imagery used to promote DC’s forthcoming Final Crisis). January is notorious as a cinematic dumping ground, but the trailer certainly looks interesting.

The Golden Compass (December 7, 2007): This New Line production looks incredible. I’ve not read the novel by Philip Pullman, but reactions to the trailer suggests this will draw a sizable crowd.

I am Legend (December 14, 2007): The third adaptation of Richard Matheson’s tale of the last man on earth arrives in theaters.

National Treasure: Book of Secrets (December 21, 2007): This sequel hopes to further milk the Duh Vinci Code-inspired market, but it could be exciting and worthwhile on its own terms. The filmmakers show cojones for giving a sequel a title that sounds even remotely like Book of Shadows.

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (December 21, 2007): This tale has been told many times before, and here receives a gothic re-imagining by Tim Burton. It takes the twentieth-century play and Sondheim musical as its inspiration, and Todd here is an antihero, rather than the villain of Victorian melodrama.

Water Horse: Legend of the Deep (December 25, 2007): This sea-monster story appears to be aimed at the younger set. The special effects team from LOTR worked on this one, so it should at least look good.

4 replies on “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Genre”

  1. y42 says:

    Burton + Depp
    That always adds up to good stuff.

    • Timeshredder says:

      Re: Burton + Depp

      The trailer clearly indicates we’re in Burton’s world. If he makes that work for the story, this will be an impressive adaptation indeed.

    • timnus says:

      Re: Burton + Depp

      That always adds up to good stuff.

      I generally agree, but I’ve been cautious since "The Nightmare Before Christmas". The Pumpkin King is like, "Wow! Christmas! This will be fun and pretty and giving gifts, instead of the constant scaring children gig of Halloween." And then he turns Christmas into a Halloween redux, with Santa saving the day. Ah well, I suppose everyone screws up now and then.

      • y42 says:

        Re: Burton + Depp

        That always adds up to good stuff.

        I generally agree, but I’ve been cautious since "The Nightmare Before Christmas". The Pumpkin King is like, "Wow! Christmas! This will be fun and pretty and giving gifts, instead of the constant scaring children gig of Halloween." And then he turns Christmas into a Halloween redux, with Santa saving the day. Ah well, I suppose everyone screws up now and then.

        I’m afraid you missed the point quite entirely :(

        Yes, he tried to make Christmas. He tried to make it pretty, and he gave gifts.
        But he cannot wrap his head around what was wrong with wat he was doing. He gave gifts that made sense to him, things he likes to get for himself, and it made a mess of it, because he’s scary without even trying.

        The movie is about his identity crisis, he tried to be something he isn’t, and it literally blew up in his face.
        He’s Halloween incarnate, and he can’t be Christmas even if he really tries his best, because that goes against his nature.

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