Movie NewsMicah RobinsonComment

300, and its explosive box office run, had a lot of surprises for the industry, but one of the greatest was the ease with which Gerard Butler anchored the film in his star-making turn as King Leonidas. And ever since then, casual fans and fanboys alike have been looking forward to what he’s going to do next. His name’s been mentioned from everything to Watchmen to the Escape From New York remake, and however any of these turn out, it’s clear that the guy’s going to stick with what brought him to the dance: Genre pics. Further cementing that is Game, a new sci-fi film written and directed by the guys behind the insane actioner Crank. That’s the good news.

The bad news is that the plot to the film sounds mad sketchy. Essentially, Butler would be a cyber-warrior in a world with mind control technology that allows humans to control other humans in one giant online team deathmatch bout (What, no Capture The Flag?). But Butler has plans to break the control, regain his own identity, and destroy the system that enslaves him.  Yeah. The execs behind the film see it as contemporary commentary on The Internet and the paradox of how it brings us closer yet seems to isolate us at the same time.

Make no mistake…the best sci-fi usually is a commentary on the world in which we live, and The Internet is fair game. But not only have we already had several cautionary tales about technology overwhelming us and subverting out identity, but we’ve had one that’s already used this particular plot, 2001’s Polish/Japanese hybrid Avalon. While there’s no mind control element at work in that film and its protagonist was female, most of the other details are identical and that one, pretty visuals aside, didn’t turn out too well. And call me crazy, but I didn’t see anything in Crank to make me think of the writing/directing team of Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor as go-to guys for provocative social commentary. Still, it’s not like anybody saw The Matrix coming from The Wachowskis’ previous output, so who knows? All I know is he better not have a sword or a Spartan Laser...