A month ago, the news that Hollywood is actually working on a Minecraft movie would have been cause for chortling. “A movie adaptation of Minecraft?” we would’ve scoffed, sipping our highballs and dipping our breadrolls into a carafe filled with Beluga caviar. “Goodness, how silly! There’s no story to Minecraft! It’s just lots of blocks you use to build things!” This was before the release of The Lego Movie, which took the whole “blocks-used-to-build-things” concept and turned it into a pretty freaking good movie.
So, for the moment, it’s possible to be optimistic. As reported by Deadline, the Minecraft project is currently being developed by Roy Lee (who produced The Lego Movie) as some kind of live-action film, which sounds just mildly insane enough to work. But could this instigate a whole new rush in videogame cinema? Here are five more videogames that don’t particularly seem like they could be movies, which could ironically make them perfect as movies:
Tetris: The classic building-blocks game. A movie adaptation would need to zero in on the emotional core of Tetris: It’s all about fitting in, you know? I see Jay Baruchel voicing the wise-cracking L-shaped block, joined by his avuncular pal Square Block (Seth Rogen), who tries to impress the too-cool-for-school T-Block (Aubrey Plaza) by competing in the Ultimate Tetris Championship. But in the process, he runs afoul of the malevolent ten-time champion Straight Line Block (Tom Hiddleston). Just imagine the Hans Zimmer version of the Tetris soundtrack!
Breakout: It’s a tale as old as time. A paddle; a ball; bricks to be broken. For decades, we have thrilled to new iterations both official and unofficial, which typically add in new garnishes (your paddle has lasers now!). But maybe it’s time to put a new twist on an old story. The bigscreen Breakout would pull a Wicked and alter the focus completely. A society of anthropomorphic bricks suffers a sudden and inexplicable attack from a massive space paddle, which hurls a bouncing-ball-of-destruction in what appears to be some kind of terrifying game. The bricks have to come together, led by a dashing young brick rebel (voice of Miles Teller), and reform, preparing for the next attack.
Doctor Mario: Sure, the first Super Mario Bros. movie is one of the worst movies ever made. But times change. Tastes evolve. Let’s reboot the Mario movie franchise under the guise of adapting this classic puzzle game. In this telling, Mario (Jon Bernthal) is a guy from the wrong side of the tracks who worked his way through med school working all night as a plumber. (He rarely slept, which led to elaborate maybe-hallucinations about mushrooms and turtles and a beautiful princess.) Now he’s working as a doctor in the most violent corner of New York City, attempting to navigate the byzantine healthcare system in the midst of a mysterious new epidemic. Can he prescribe the right mixture of medication? Think Contagion meets A Beautiful Mind.
Candy Crush: There’s lots of candy or whatever and the candy talks or whatever. Spoiler Alert: Candy Crush is a bad game and you’re a bad person for playing it.
Boom Blox: Steven Spielberg actually worked on this early Wii game, wherein you use blocks to build stuff and then knock over stuff made of blocks. So, totally similar to Lincoln. For the movie, Spielberg could reteam with his Minority Report star Tom Cruise — and, more importantly, the Minority Report Power Gloves. Cruise plays a man who takes a job as a “beta tester” for a new game that requires him to constantly knock over gigantic block-buildings. But things take a weird turn when Cruise discovers that the “game” is real, and that the “block buildings” he’s been destroying are real buildings in, like, Detroit. Thrills ensue!