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How Movies Could Have Been Improved


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#1

furrylump

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Posted Mar 3, 2012 @ 9:13 AM

Basically, problems you had with various movies and how they could have solved those problems. Or maybe it wasn't even a problem you had, you just think it could've been made even better if they'd taken a different route.

Beetlejuice: This is a very unpopular opinion, but I think it would be a lot better without the spotlight-hogging titular character. Almost every time he shows up, the rest of the movie slows to a crawl so he can caper around acting wacky, and I didn't find him nearly funny enough to make up for it. They could have easily done the entire movie just using the Maitlands vs. the Deetzes and Otto as the conflict. Alternately, they could've toned Betelgeuse down a lot, or made his scenes a lot more balanced, because I really did like the rest of the movie.

Sex And The City 2: There were a lot of things wrong with this movie, but at least it would've been significantly less terrible if it had portrayed a lot of the characters' attitudes and behaviour as ridiculous/selfish/inappropriate/whiny as necessary, instead of expecting the audience to somehow sympathise with Carrie's need to eat at fancy restaurants every single night, for example.
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#2

Cosmos2

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Posted Mar 5, 2012 @ 11:06 PM

I could make The Tree of Life a lot better by editing out the annoying stuff that keeps me from watching it a second time. Of course that would ruin the director's vision, so I'd keep the original as the director's cut on the DVD for those who might prefer it.

Update with new idea:

This would be tougher since it involves some new scenes and not just deleting stuff. For The Descendants, the Clooney character would never find out his wife cheated on him. I'm not being sarcastic here. In the movie version he never suspected, so why tell him right now at the worst time? Why tell him ever?

The scene where the older daughter, Alex, rats out the mother is replaced with one where she does a voiceover letting the audience in on the adultery and why she won't share it with her dad. This will make her the more sympathetic and complex character early in the movie. She would take on the responsibility for guiding her schlubby old man to be a better father and do the right thing about the land deal.

Sid would play dice instead of chess. After his cruel hoax on Matt where he claims to have a younger retarded brother, Alex would take the dice and eject him out of the car. When he asks for them back she ignores him, thinking to herself in a voiceover, "Pair of dice can go fuck itself," a pun of Matt's earlier voiceover line which would be a hell yeah moment, and Sid would never be seen again. (So the later scene with Matt and Sid would have a different actor playing Alex's new chess playing boyfriend.)

They would still run into Brian Speer on Kauai but this time the actor is more like Naoh Cross in Chinatown and Judy Greer could play his daughter. (OKay. That part is sarcastic.) In my version Speer betrays Matt in other ways besides the adultery; unethical ways of influencing the descendants, consistent with original storyline. And it would be the daughter who figures it out while helping dad investigate his suspicions. In the end she gets her dad to identify the right enemy without him needing to know all the reasons. There would still be a great confrontation between them, with great irony because the audience would know more than Matt.

Greer's character would still find out about the adultery (and the audience would know this) and there would be the scene where she feels compelled to visit Elizabeth on her deathbed to forgive her. However, in this version her wildly over-the-top speech is ambiguous enough so Matt, being clueless, comically misunderstands totally what she means.

And then the rest is unchanged. Except the expression on Alex's face in the static shot at the end would have much more significance since we'd know what a hero she is.

Edited by Cosmos2, Mar 6, 2012 @ 1:08 AM.

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#3

Spartan Girl

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Posted Mar 6, 2012 @ 1:46 PM

Crazy, Stupid, Love: Have somebody ASIDE from the crazy babysitter call Emily out on her cheating bullshit. Also, end it with Emily finally owning up to her faults and asking Call for another chance instead of him being the one to make the big speech at the graduation.
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#4

cpcathy

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Posted Mar 6, 2012 @ 3:04 PM

Insomnia. Cast someone other than Al Pacino. He was horrible, the character was all wrong for the type of movie it was, he was too over the top, as a cop from "Ellay." I would have cast Stellan Skarsgard as the cop. Oh yeah, and make the movie way creepier than it was. Great, creepy opening titles that led to "meh" movie.
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#5

Rickster

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Posted Mar 6, 2012 @ 6:24 PM

Insomnia. Cast someone other than Al Pacino. He was horrible, the character was all wrong for the type of movie it was, he was too over the top, as a cop from "Ellay." I would have cast Stellan Skarsgard as the cop. Oh yeah, and make the movie way creepier than it was. Great, creepy opening titles that led to "meh" movie.


Or I guess you could have just watched Skarsgard play the role in the original Norwegian version, in which he starred.
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#6

spaceytraci17

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Posted Mar 6, 2012 @ 8:03 PM

Insomnia. Cast someone other than Al Pacino. He was horrible, the character was all wrong for the type of movie it was, he was too over the top, as a cop from "Ellay." I would have cast Stellan Skarsgard as the cop. Oh yeah, and make the movie way creepier than it was. Great, creepy opening titles that led to "meh" movie.


That movie is the definition of irony to me, because it put me to sleep
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#7

magicdog

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Posted Mar 9, 2012 @ 4:31 PM

In honor of the passing of Davy Jones, I went to rewatch the Monkees only feature film, "Head" (1968).

As big of a fan I am of the group and their music, (including the Head soundtrack), I really think the entire concept for the film was all wrong.

According to sources, the band, Bob Rafelson and Jack Nicholson holed themselves up in a hotel room and smoked pot. Then they'd talk and imagine various scenerios while under the influence and record them on tape. Then they came up with a haphazard script and went with what they had.

They really should have not tried to be so "avant garde" and they should have created a film with a more tangible premise. Many Monkee fans at the time couldn't see the film since it was originally rated R (under the fledgling MPAA ratings system), and those who got to see it went in thinking it would be similar to the TV series and were horribly disappointed (myself included). The movie itself is open to interpretation as to the "message" the band was trying to express, and it left many viewers just plain confused. It's like telling a joke but you're the only one in the room who gets the punchline.

Even Peter Tork admitted if they had followed the established formula rather than fight so hard for their creative independence, their series could have gone on at least another season and the movie might not have been a flop.


The Scooby Doo live action films:

They really would have been better off if both movies had been animated features rather than live action. Don't get me wrong; they are both guilty pleasures of sorts (and Linda Cardellini & Matthew Lilliard excelled in their roles) but I really think it was a mistake to go live action and a CGI Scooby. I also would have gone with a different storyline; word has it screenwriter Craig Titley had written an earlier script which would have been about the gang's origins and a sort of love letter to the characters. Unfortuately Hollywood politics got in the way.

I also think it was wrong to make Fred such an egomaniac! That character has become a buttmonkey for the past 20+ years!!
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#8

DirectEstoppel

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Posted Mar 17, 2012 @ 3:36 PM

X-Men (2000): Oh, where do I begin?
Tell Halle Berry that Storm is supposed to be powerful and awesome, not a meek little lamb.
Tell Patrick Stewart to quit phoning it in as Charles Xavier (I was so disappointed!)
I'm pretty sure audiences were meant to root for Wolverine and Jean Grey, not Wolverine and Rogue. Recast Jean Grey immediately.
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#9

Ambrosefolly1

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Posted Mar 17, 2012 @ 10:48 PM

Between who played Jean Grey and Storm, Storm would be the one I would have recasted. I know that Halle Berry won the Oscar, but I there were so many people I would have casted instead of her.
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#10

Jeebus Cripes

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Posted Mar 18, 2012 @ 3:49 AM

I'd make some suggestions on how to improve X-Men: The Last Stand, if not for the fact that the entire film is a failure. We'd be better off had the movie never been made.

Edited by Jeebus Cripes, Mar 18, 2012 @ 3:50 AM.

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#11

Kryptonomicon

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Posted Mar 18, 2012 @ 8:47 AM

I'd make some suggestions on how to improve X-Men: The Last Stand, if not for the fact that the entire film is a failure. We'd be better off had the movie never been made.


Then your suggestion would had been to keep Bryan Singer involved and let him finish the story he was telling. Instead of going and doing Superman Returns...
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#12

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Posted Mar 18, 2012 @ 9:24 AM

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest - Kill the love triangle dead already. If you want Johnny Depp to kiss someone so badly, bring Anamaria back.
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#13

Kryptonomicon

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Posted Mar 18, 2012 @ 9:38 AM

Kill the love triangle dead already.


I always though people blew that out of proportion. Jack seriously looks like that type that will kiss any willing woman regardless and it was clear that Elizabeth was setting him up to kill him to save everyone and Will. I was surprised when I read polls about who she should end with. I never saw it as more as some plot device to have her move on from her being a sort of proper lady to pirate queen, YMMV.

Edited by Kryptonomicon, Mar 18, 2012 @ 9:38 AM.

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#14

jch323

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Posted Mar 18, 2012 @ 11:03 AM

The scene where the older daughter, Alex, rats out the mother is replaced with one where she does a voiceover letting the audience in on the adultery and why she won't share it with her dad.

I'm sorry, but the last thing The Descendants needed was another voiceover. I'm suprised at how much I ended up enjoying the film after Clooney's initial torturous voiceover. In my opinion, voiceovers rarely add anything to films and more often than not actively ruin them.
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#15

Eegah

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Posted Mar 18, 2012 @ 6:07 PM

Source Code: Simply chop off everything after everyone on the train is frozen in their moment of happiness. It's a perfectly fitting ending on its own, but then the movie just keeps going and wrecks that mood by bringing up some rather disturbing questions about the situation (and that's not deliberate; we're just not supposed to think about them).

Edited by Eegah, Mar 18, 2012 @ 6:08 PM.

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#16

Jeebus Cripes

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Posted Mar 19, 2012 @ 2:51 AM

Then your suggestion would had been to keep Bryan Singer involved and let him finish the story he was telling. Instead of going and doing Superman Returns...

Yeah, what you said. Also, since you mentioned Superman Returns: Taking up where Superman II left off instead of a reboot was pretty stupid. That, and casting Kate Bosworth as Lois. She was a serious yawn... well, most of the film was.
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#17

Eegah

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Posted Mar 19, 2012 @ 9:14 AM

And if they were going to do the sequel route, take Kevin Smith's idea that after Lois learns that Jason is Superman's son, she confronts him over why she doesn't remember them having sex (though maybe worded a bit differently than "When did you rape me?").
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#18

Kryptonomicon

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Posted Mar 19, 2012 @ 11:07 AM

Taking up where Superman II left off instead of a reboot was pretty stupid.


This goes from What was he thinking?! Thread it really made no sense and was downhill from there on, the concept was bad from the begining. I like Bryan but unlike Sam Raimi whose love for Spiderman was not blind, he kind went to far away for his "homage".

Edited by Kryptonomicon, Mar 19, 2012 @ 11:12 AM.

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#19

MaggieElizabeth

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Posted Mar 19, 2012 @ 3:34 PM

The introduction of a child into the plot was all I needed to hear in order to realize Superman Returns would not come off.

Although I enjoyed Midnight in Paris very much, I can't help thinking it might have been an even better film if someone other than Owen Wilson had played the protagonist. Of course the protagonist is an Allen stand-in and Woody is far too old to play the role himself, but Wilson always comes across as none too bright, and this character needed to exude a certain measure of intelligence along with naivete. Sam Rockwell or Jake Gyllenhal might have done a better job.
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#20

Nanrad

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Posted Mar 20, 2012 @ 4:34 PM

I'm pretty sure audiences were meant to root for Wolverine and Jean Grey, not Wolverine and Rogue. Recast Jean Grey immediately.


lol. Yeah, because I really was rooting for Wolverine/Rogue.
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#21

Kryptonomicon

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Posted Mar 20, 2012 @ 9:58 PM

I'm pretty sure audiences were meant to root for Wolverine and Jean Grey, not Wolverine and Rogue. Recast Jean Grey immediately.


???! I think audiences were supposed to feel sorry for Wolverine as the underdog having a thing for Jean while she was engaged to Cyclops. I don't think Bryan wanted to destroy canon not that Joss Whedon would extend the same courtesy to the universe /bitter.
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#22

torgoman

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Posted Mar 24, 2012 @ 1:32 PM

Morning Glory: Include more moments between the crew of the struggling morning show interacting without Rachael McAdams's producer character being present. Not just Diane Keaton and Harrison Ford, but the rest of the morning show crew. Yes, she's the main character, but one or two less scenes between her and Patrick Wilson as the love interest, and more time spent behind the scenes would have made this cute movie a funnier film.
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#23

oreo8704

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Posted Mar 24, 2012 @ 1:42 PM

(quote)I'm pretty sure audiences were meant to root for Wolverine and Jean Grey, not Wolverine and Rogue. Recast Jean Grey immediately.(quote)

I thought Rogue and Wolverine were sweet but I didn't see that kind of chemistry between them. IMO Jean and Wolverine had decent chemistry, more so than HJ usually has with his love interests.

Edited by oreo8704, Mar 24, 2012 @ 1:43 PM.

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#24

Redtracer

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Posted Mar 24, 2012 @ 2:36 PM

Morning Glory: Include more moments between the crew of the struggling morning show interacting without Rachael McAdams's producer character being present. Not just Diane Keaton and Harrison Ford, but the rest of the morning show crew. Yes, she's the main character, but one or two less scenes between her and Patrick Wilson as the love interest, and more time spent behind the scenes would have made this cute movie a funnier film.

I totally agree. The romantic angle felt really tacked on, and it was never as interesting as what was going on at the show and how everyone had to adjust to changing expectations for news and entertainment. It would have made the movie better if it had gone into more detail about what was happening at the show. I know everyone compared this movie to Broadcast News, but that movie actually was about, y'know, broadcast news. Was this movie actually about a TV show? Not as much as it should have been.

I thought Morning Glory was a real missed opportunity.

Edited by Redtracer, Mar 24, 2012 @ 2:37 PM.

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#25

joanne3482

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Posted Mar 24, 2012 @ 4:43 PM

The Grey: I love me some ass kicking Liam Neeson. But I felt like I was watching two different movies. Either be a kick ass man against nature movie where they are trying to stay alive in freezing Alaska or make it a cheesy campy man vs wild animal movie ala Snakes on a Plane. It felt like they were trying to do both and it failed at both.
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#26

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Posted Mar 24, 2012 @ 7:06 PM

Agreed, joanne. I probably liked the movie overall more than you, but I remember thinking several times that I wish they had just ditched the wolves completely. There was more than enough drama on the man vs. the elements side to carry the story.
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#27

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Posted Mar 26, 2012 @ 12:46 PM

I watched Spanglish on TV, and it could have used A LOT of improvements, chief among them to have Adam Sandler divorce his selfish, cheating, shallow, self-absorbed, whiny bitch of a wife. There was no reason at all for him to stay with her; she was a crappy mother and it would have been better for the kids if he'd divorced her and got sole custody.
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#28

zelmia

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Posted Apr 12, 2012 @ 12:42 PM

Moneyball.
Stop telling and start showing.
All the baseball we saw was licensed footage. How were we to understand this magic he was working if we never actually got to see the team play? And we saw almost nothing of the beautiful Bay Area. I get that the entire story was about a manager and pretty much really did take place in the team offices, but the movie didn't need to be so bloody literal.
Get rid of the flashback sequences. They added nothing to Pitt's character, though they were clearly supposed to give us insight into his decision-making process.
Also, the Jonah Hill character had no arc. Either show us his growth through a change of wardrobe (he starts out being completely buttoned down) or recast for someone who can give a more nuanced performance. Which is pretty much anybody.



Chicago.
Richard Gere was totally miscast and kind of painful to watch. There are plenty of actual song and dance men out there who are also bankable names that could have played that character just as well, if not better: Neil Patrick Harris, Hugh Jackman just off the top of my head. And hey, Taye Diggs was already right there.
Zellwegger was equally difficult to sit through. Everything about her was thin and awkward, including her singing. I understand that that's also how her character is supposed to be, but seriously. Get someone who doesn't look like the walking dead.


Cowboys vs. Aliens
This movie was an interesting concept: the mashup of both the Western and Sci-Fi genres. But what they gave us was really just a small handful of set pieces with a LOT of talking in between. It actually gave me the feeling of watching something like The Poseidon Adventure, where the characters go from one situation to the next, trying to figure out how to deal with each with a lot a lot a lot of talking. And of course, with each set piece, we lose at least one major character. It's a standard formula and can work very well.
But at least with something like Poseidon or even Alien, we understand that the characters are in constant danger - there is no escape after all. So even really dumb decisions are kind of understandable because the characters are under constant duress.
With this one, I think all the elements were there, but somehow they just didn't put them together in the right way. Pacing was really inconsistent and the whole thing dragged in several places. It comes down to the script, which I guess i would like to have had a crack at doctoring.
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#29

Jeebus Cripes

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Posted Apr 13, 2012 @ 1:48 AM

Richard Gere was totally miscast and kind of painful to watch. There are plenty of actual song and dance men out there who are also bankable names that could have played that character just as well, if not better: Neil Patrick Harris, Hugh Jackman just off the top of my head. And hey, Taye Diggs was already right there.


If I'm not mistaken, I think Hugh Jackman turned the role down... or he was forced to turn it down due to other obligations. Something along those lines, because I read somewhere that he was meant to play that part.
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#30

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Posted Apr 13, 2012 @ 10:25 AM

I thought Gere was wonderful in the role, and I'm not a squeeing Gere fangirl by a longshot. A true YMMV moment
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