Tuesday, March 27, 2018

How Can I Approach 'Ready Player One'?

Ready Player One will be out in theaters this Thursday, and it's been shown to a number of critics with mixed reviews. It's currently sitting above 80% on Rotten Tomatoes. What's the deal with this movie? Well it's based off a 2012 book of the same name, which has a fairly solid rating on Good Reads, even with the myriad of negative reviews. The book is set in the not-to-distant future where VR is king, and so are the 80's. A gamer must find an Easter Egg in this massive world in order to claim the prize before an evil corporation can nab it. It's the standard small good guy versus the big bad evil business story with a very 80's spin. It also features a smattering of gaming references that even casual gamers would understand. The book was a big seller, and was optioned into a movie that was ultimately directed by Steven Spielberg. The trailers have been a smorgasbord of who's-who in the gaming and pop-culture world. Websites have been analyzing every piece of footage to locate all the hidden gems.

I'll be honest in saying I don't understand the appeal of Ready Player One. I attempted to read the book, but put it down after a few chapters. I felt that the content spent more time hammering to me the importance of the straight white male lead, and not on the world. And the writing was meh. It was "some text here" followed by massive information dumps. The flow was too jittery.

Some of the initial reviews of the movie are pointing out on the same issue. But this wasn't a book geared towards me. And I have a sinking feeling that the movie will be similar. Pop culture references. 80's nostalgia. Insert-game-character-here all for the sake of profit. I'm not saying that to dump on Spielberg. I enjoy his work. But this is not his type of film, and not the solid story he typically gravitates towards.

I'm torn. I have a feeling this will be a movie forced on me because it's "video game" related, and I have to see these to keep myself informed and up to date for future articles. And I REALLY like the 80's. Really, really like it. I don't have a problem with nostalgia being used as a story-telling proponent. If done well, it can be charming and effective. Then I see reviews like this and wonder if it's a movie so wrapped up in the straight white male fantasy, that we can't experience anything but that? Win the challenge. Charm the woman as she becomes your trophy. The usual tropes we all associate with these types of movies. Or the movie will throw in too many references and other characters from games/sci-fi/fantasy/comics that we can't focus on the story.

I need your opinions, readers. Do I give this movie a shot when I couldn't make it through the book? Or do I give it a pass and let the trailers be my guide?

Are you going to see Ready Player One?

0 comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment.

We ask that you please do not include any offensive, sexist, or derogatory language - otherwise your comment will be removed.