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Why Hollywood has failed us

Updated on April 2, 2013

It’s almost here – another summer of blockbuster movies. Over the past several months we, the average movie-goer, have been promised big stars, lots of CGI and special effects, and astounding stories await us.

But something is amiss. Big stars? Check. Lots of CGI and special effects? Check. Astounding stories? Not so much.

Hollywood has been in a downward spiral for a long time, circling the drain of originality yet not crying out for help. The newest movies coming out this year:

Iron Man 3 – a sequel based on a comic book
The Wolverine – a sequel based on a comic book
Star Trek Into Darkness – a sequel based on a television show
Monster’s University – a sequel that’s a prequel
Kick-Ass 2 – another sequel
The Hangover Part III – a sequel based on an overdone premise
Fast and Furious 6 – a sequel that makes me ask, “Really?”

I’m sure you have by now sensed a pattern. Sequel, sequel, sequel. When it’s not a sequel it is based off another work. The Lone Ranger – television show. World War Z – a book. The Host – a book. It has become the norm – and the expected method of creating – to either keep a storyline alive with as many sequels as possible or to base one’s script off an already existing creation. Even the sequel The Hangover Part III’s humble beginning with The Hangover was not an original premise. It was done a few years earlier with Dude Where’s My Car. Neither one was worthy of the ticket price.

With movie ticket prices starting at around a lofty $10 per ticket and every movie demanding viewers experience it in Imax 3D at an added $5-$7 per ticket, we, the movie-goers, should demand better from Hollywood. After leaving the box office with a ticket in hand, we’ve spent around $15 per ticket to see an Imax 3D movie and we haven’t even purchased our $10 movie staples of popcorn and soda. Why, being the loyal supporters of Hollywood even in this broken economy, not demand more from the directors and producers that are allegedly creating for us? Taking someone else’s work and throwing it together with some CGI and a big name star isn’t creativity.

Pan's Labyrinth - Guillermo del Toro

This is not to say that every sequel is going to be bad. Surely Iron Man 3 will be every bit as good as the first two movies. But how rich should we make Tony Stark before we say enough is enough?

My suggestion for this blockbuster summer: pay only to see the originals. Pacific Rim, for instance, may contain giant robots like other movies before it, but it is an original screenplay by Travis Beacham and legendary film director Guillermo del Toro, of Pan's Labyrinth and Hellboy fame. If giant robots and sci-fi is not your cup of tea, find another original movie and spend the money there. Save the sequels and take-offs for your Redbox rentals. Until we actually send a message to Hollywood that we will not stand for another Fast and Furious movie, they will keep making them…and making them…and making them.


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    • profile image

      The Big Dave Machine 4 years ago

      You forget it's a sequel..when you live your life..a quarter ...time. Loses something without the accent.

    • Angie Martin profile image

      Angie Martin 4 years ago from Frazier Park, California

      Thanks for the input! I think that James Bond almost stands apart from other franchises. James Bond fans are very specific and not mainstream - and just for full disclosure, I am a very huge James Bond fan. It's not like everyone runs out to see the latest 007 adventure just because it has that name like with other film franchises. Bond fans are very particular about who they like playing Bond and they demand their Bond films to behave in a certain way - not just make a Bond film for the sake of doing so. With different people playing Bond throughout the years, it kind of seems like different franchises. I may be way off base with that, but I do appreciate the Bond franchise as a separate beast. Thank you for mentioning Elysium - I had forgotten about that one! :)

    • Eric Mikols profile image

      Eric Mikols 4 years ago from New England

      I hear you. It can get a bit tiring. I'm not against long running franchises, but I think the problem is that for every original movie there's fifty sequels out as well. I like that James Bond has been kicking for a while but I don't like when every movie of the year is a franchise piece. It's part of the reason why Elysium is my most anticipated movie this summer.

      Nice Hub!