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How Movies Could Have Been Improved


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#61

tam1MI

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Posted May 2, 2012 @ 12:46 AM

I prefer to think Alien3 never happened and that it was just some supremely messed-up dream Ripley had while in hypersleep, but if they really had to make a third installment.... yeah, I would've done it a lot differently. It's not a bad film per se; after all, it was a worthy directorial debut for David Fincher, but it was bleak to the point of being ridiculous (blame it on early '90s angst?). It was disconcerting they killed off Hicks and, more pointedly, Newt, thereby throwing away everything Ripley had fought so hard for in Aliens. And the prison planet made for an interesting setting but lacked the sheer claustrophobia of the first chapter or the relentless they're-coming-out-of-the-walls terror of the second. I would've preferred to have Ripley return to Earth and finally do battle with the evil Company, and of course at least a few of the acid-bleeding beasts... who's to say there weren't other Alien Queens elsewhere in the galaxy and the Company happened to have captured one? I'm not sure where Hicks and Newt could fit in the story but if nothing else, the Company could've kept them hostage in hypersleep.


I've always said that in the third movie the suits forgot who the real star of them was, and wasn't Sigourney Weaver, as good as she was.

If they absolutely had to do the prison planet thing, I would have a grown-up Newt working on some sort of space freighter or other type of spaceship. There could be a nice scene where she talks to her 'parents', Ripley and Hicks, on the vidphone, perhaps Bishop as well. Then the ship crashes on the prison planet and all of her crewmates are killed. Rev up the plot of Newt realizing that the xenomorphs have arrived on the planet and trying to figure out how to do battle with them, calling on her half-forgotten childhood memories. There would be no "OH NOES!!! I'm preggers with an alien baby so I'll throw myself into a volcano!" stupidity at the end, just Newt using her wits and ingenuity to battle and destroy the xenomorphs and escape from the planet by the skin of her teeth. Maybe we could have a homage to the original movie and she could rescue a dog along the way.
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#62

dougfir

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Posted May 2, 2012 @ 3:44 PM

There would be no "OH NOES!!! I'm preggers with an alien baby so I'll throw myself into a volcano!" stupidity at the end...

Geez, that ending... it almost did tip the film into bad movie territory for me. Can't think of another movie moment where I've been profoundly depressed and involuntarily laughing at the same time.
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#63

Laira

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Posted May 7, 2012 @ 10:47 AM

I'm not a superfan of that movie or anything (although I do like it), but I am convinced that it was ahead of its time. I remember it being a flop at the time, and a lot of it was pinned on how unlikeable the characters were. But now you have stuff like The Ugly Truth (with characters ten times as horrible as those in Addicted to Love) grossing almost $100 million. I'm sure someone could study romantic comedy trends in tandem with societal attitudes toward love, marriage, sex, etc., and discover that audiences have grown used to, shall we say, "spiky" characters in these kinds of movies.

Just a theory, but I'm sticking to it. Of course, it would have also helped if the director and cast had played the whole thing as the pitch-black comedy it should have been.


Yes, Addicted To Love would have been a lot better if it had acknowledged that the two leads were unlikeable psycho stalkers, instead of trying to tell us that they were a couple of misunderstood woobies.

It should have ended with them realizing how crazy they'd been acting, and that they should be together, and then getting caught and sent to jail.
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#64

Redtracer

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Posted May 7, 2012 @ 2:15 PM

The two leads embracing in a wildly romantic fashion before being escorted away in separate cop cars? Now that's a romantic comedy ending I could get behind.
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#65

magicdog

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Posted May 10, 2012 @ 3:26 PM

The movie, "Titanic" could have been improved if....



  • Colin Farrell had been Jack Dawson instead of Leonardo DiCaprio (sorry Leo fans).


  • The script focused on actual stories with the actual passengers on the ship. There were plenty of fascinating people to choose from and several stories could have been followed within each class and the crew.


  • The writers hadn't made the Cal character such an evil twerp! It might have been interesting if the story had Rose and Cal boarding the ship together (either engaged or newly married for convenience as planned) and having them realize how much they came to love and respect each other, all doubts aside. Then the boat goes down while Cal assures Rose he'll take the next available lifeboat.


  • The vicious lie about Lt. William McMaster Murdoch were never included.


  • We actually got a reason why Rose didn't want to continue in the upper class lifestyle. It's the only lifestyle she had ever truly known and considering how crappy it was to live outside of it in 1912 (especially if you didn't have the skills to do so) it was rather shortsighted of her.

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#66

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Posted May 10, 2012 @ 6:06 PM

I usually sum up my opinion of Titantic with something like, "The ship actually sinking and all that was done really well, but the movie would've been a lot better without the two main characters in it."

Edited by furrylump, May 10, 2012 @ 7:05 PM.

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#67

TudorQueen

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Posted May 10, 2012 @ 7:28 PM

That's how I feel about Shakespeare in Love. I love absolutely everyone and everything about that movie except the central couple, both of whom make me snooze.

BTW, according to notations in the published script, as well as comments made by Kate Winslet, Rose was supposed to actually have some feelings for Cal at the beginning, and he had the occasional human moment, such as a cut scene in which he acknowledges liking one of her modern art purchases.
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#68

lastdaughterfk

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Posted May 10, 2012 @ 10:51 PM

That's how I feel about Shakespeare in Love. I love absolutely everyone and everything about that movie except the central couple, both of whom make me snooze.


I rarely complain about leads in a movie but I never got the "love" part from that title. Never saw the chemistry or the purpose and in the end they didn't even ended up together, as much as I didn't felt the chemistry at least there should be a point to the relationship to intellectually accept that it was about love IMO, is like "Why did we watch this movie again? Just to know how Shakespeare came up with a character named Viola...oh ok?"
I do wonder how would had been the movie different if Winona Ryder would had played the leading lady....
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#69

dougfir

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Posted May 12, 2012 @ 3:58 PM

The script focused on actual stories with the actual passengers on the ship. There were plenty of fascinating people to choose from and several stories could have been followed within each class and the crew.


Agreed. You can't have a fascinating actress like Kathy Bates portray a fascinating character like Molly Brown and not give her more to do.

My big Titanic change? Jack would survive and he and Rose would live happily ever after -- that is, until the sequel when they board a ship called the Lusitania...
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#70

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Posted May 12, 2012 @ 4:41 PM

I can't get behind Colin Farrell as Jack. I think DiCaprio owned the role.

Other than that, those changes would have made a very interesting movie. Being a Titanic geek before the movie came out, I was hoping they would focus on the famous passengers, particularly Jack Phillips, the wireless operator. I love the movie the way it is, but that would have been nice.
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#71

magicdog

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Posted May 12, 2012 @ 8:52 PM

My big Titanic change? Jack would survive and he and Rose would live happily ever after -- that is, until the sequel when they board a ship called the Lusitania...


Hee!

Another improvement thought:

I like the idea that Jack & Rose survive only for Rose to find out being poor sucks and wonders why she ever thought it would be so great!
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#72

lastdaughterfk

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Posted May 12, 2012 @ 9:08 PM

My big Titanic change? Jack would survive and he and Rose would live happily ever after --


Heh funny I don't know if a happy ending would had made the movie as famous as it was though. I would had added to have Cal pulling a "Javert" and help Jack survive while he died himself, recognizing that his money didn't made him a better person. I know it sounds corny but it comes a moment where you think everyone including Rose and her mother are just stupid for not seeing how horrible Cal was, so adding a moment where he regains some of the good things surely Rose saw before to accept his hand in marriage would had been a bit more deep instead of "mustache twirling bad fiance that girl most get away from", YMMV.

Edited by lastdaughterfk, May 12, 2012 @ 9:10 PM.

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#73

Corporal Agarn

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Posted May 14, 2012 @ 6:22 PM

I watched Psycho for the umpteenth time yesterday (since Encore Suspense was showing it for Mother's Day, which, ha!) and realized I agree with Robert Ebert that the psychologist's analysis at the end is way too long. I think the end scene of
Spoiler
inner monologue loses some of its impact because it's so far removed from the fruit cellar scene.
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#74

hardy har

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Posted May 19, 2012 @ 7:59 PM

I was dragged to see Notting Hill by my mother and aunt when I was in high school. Now, I'm not a hater of that movie or anything, but it would've been a fuck of a lot better if the A-plot was about Bella (woman in the wheel chair) and her husband. Gina McKee and Tim McInnerny were so much more engaging and interesting than Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant.

I'm not a superfan of that movie or anything (although I do like it), but I am convinced that it was ahead of its time. I remember it being a flop at the time, and a lot of it was pinned on how unlikeable the characters were. But now you have stuff like The Ugly Truth (with characters ten times as horrible as those in Addicted to Love) grossing almost $100 million. I'm sure someone could study romantic comedy trends in tandem with societal attitudes toward love, marriage, sex, etc., and discover that audiences have grown used to, shall we say, "spiky" characters in these kinds of movies.

Just a theory, but I'm sticking to it. Of course, it would have also helped if the director and cast had played the whole thing as the pitch-black comedy it should have been.

Yes, Addicted To Love would have been a lot better if it had acknowledged that the two leads were unlikeable psycho stalkers, instead of trying to tell us that they were a couple of misunderstood woobies.

It should have ended with them realizing how crazy they'd been acting, and that they should be together, and then getting caught and sent to jail.

Thank you! I actually own that movie and I just block out all the schmaltzy "misunderstood woobies" parts because I looooved the leads when they were just being psychotic assholes. I think it technically came out when I was in middle school, but I didn't see it until my latter high school years. A bunch of friends had a movie night (all rom-coms much to my annoyance) and Addicted to Love managed to make the list because of the Meg Ryan Factor. Everyone was sort of horrified because the leads were so mean, but I was mostly laughing my ass off most of the time.

BTW, anyone looking for a romantic comedy/love story about two completely and utterly unapologetic assholes should check out Love Me If You Dare as soon as possible. It stars Marion Cotillard and Guillaume Canet and the two lead characters are such shitheads you wouldn't wish them on your worst enemy. I love it so much.

Edited by hardy har, May 19, 2012 @ 8:03 PM.

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#75

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Posted May 29, 2012 @ 9:07 PM

I liked J. Depp in Sweeny Todd, but they all but ruined the movie by casting untalented, unappealing actors as the younger couple of lovers. They couldn't sing. At least JD could... after a fashion.

It's a pet peeve. How many times do they try to revive the 'musical' only to often cast stars who can't bloody sing.
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#76

Redtracer

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Posted May 30, 2012 @ 11:27 AM

Oh, I feel completely the opposite about Sweeney Todd, at least when it comes to the singing. Johnny Depp can carry a tune (at best), but Helena Bonham Carter cannot sing at all. I can't imagine how much post-production work they had to do on her voice to make it palatable. On the other hand, I thought that the actors playing Anthony and Johanna have perfectly nice voices. Maybe not worthy of Sweeney Todd, but clearly the results of some kind of training and former singing experience. Hell, the kid playing Toby was a better singer than either Depp or Bonham Carter.

Of course, Anthony and Johanna are two painfully boring characters (I don't think I've ever seen a production of the show where I cared a bit about either of them), and I didn't think either actor brought any particular charisma or presence to the table. But voice-wise? I'll take either of them over the leads.
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#77

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Posted May 30, 2012 @ 1:28 PM

Of course, Anthony and Johanna are two painfully boring characters (I don't think I've ever seen a production of the show where I cared a bit about either of them),

The only time I have ever cared about those two characters is in the London West End production this past winter. Otherwise? Never.

Edited by PepSinger, May 30, 2012 @ 1:29 PM.

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#78

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Posted May 30, 2012 @ 9:17 PM

Barbra Streisand did a rather good job directing The Prince of Tides, but seriously erred by casting herself as Nick Nolte's love interest. Debra Winger would have been perfect.
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#79

MethodActor05

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Posted May 30, 2012 @ 10:14 PM

That is such a common mistake in movies. There was this interesting gay indie that came out a few years ago, called The Conrad Boys. It was a story about a young guy who has to take care of his little brother when their mother dies. It had decent acting all around- until you got to the director's acting, who also played the lead. He was stilted and painful to watch. When the director/lead is CLEARLY the acting weak link in what is otherwise a decent cast, something's off. What could have been a memorable movie was hurt because of that.

I loved the Hunger Games, but god they needed a steadi-cam. The action sequences, yes, but they way over-used shaky-cam.
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#80

Redtracer

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Posted May 30, 2012 @ 10:25 PM

I'd also add the very recent Friends with Kids as a director-as-star misstep. I thought Jennifer Westfeldt left a little something to be desired as the lead, and she wasn't nearly as good as Adam Scott, the male lead. I kept imagining her swapping roles with Kristen Wiig, who played a much smaller part in the movie.
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#81

MaggieElizabeth

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Posted May 31, 2012 @ 6:15 AM

When considering director-as-star missteps, we shouldn't overlook the obvious -- Dances With Wolves. This movie gets a lot of grief for winning Best Picture over Goodfellas, but it's actually quite a moving film, or rather it could have been. Mary McDonnell? Wonderful. Graham Greene? Wonderful. Rodney A. Grant? Wonderful. Even the smallest parts -- the mule driver, the slightly unhinged superior officer? All acted to a fine fare-thee-well. So obviously Costner knew what he was doing as a director.

But then there's his performance, which seems all the more awkward because everyone around him is so good. Even worse than his performance of the role is his hideously inexpressive narration. If only, if only he'd had the sense to cast some other actor, someone who might know what he's doing when it comes to narrating! (Too bad Morgan Freeman couldn't have played it.)
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#82

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Posted May 31, 2012 @ 3:53 PM

Stephen Chow in Kung Fu Hustle fits this theme for me. Virtually everyone else was wonderfully cast and did an excellent job in their role, and then there he was in the middle of everything stinking up the set. He had a couple of over-the-top comedic moments that were entertaining, but any time he tried to play a character dramatically - either as the pathetic wannabe thug or the Neo-style Chosen One hero, the movie ground to a halt.
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#83

MethodActor05

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Posted Jun 8, 2012 @ 7:06 PM

The Runaways would have been so much better if they had cast Taylor Momsen as Cherie Curie instead of Dakota Fanning. Kristen Stewart was absolutely dead-on as Joan Jett. Dakota did a decent job, especially when being the wounded child, but she absolutely failed when it came to being the sultry jailbait sexpot. Dakota looked too much like a fresh-faced little girl playing dress-up in corsets, which- if you've seen Runaways concert footage, Cherie Curie was anything but. It was especially obvious in the scenes where Dakota-as-Cherie is trying to pose all sexily...and...it just wasn't happening. The "Bardot-Meets-Bowie" deal that we were being sold...Dakota just can't sell it.

The producers said they had wanted Dakota Fanning as Cherie since she was 12 and waited for her to grow up, but I kind of wish they had taken a strong look at other actresses because I frankly think they could have made a better movie with someone else. That's the problem when you got a child star in mind for a role and wait for them to grow up...sometimes they don't develop in the way you expect them to.

Edited by MethodActor05, Jun 8, 2012 @ 7:07 PM.

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#84

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Posted Jun 9, 2012 @ 3:17 AM

X-Men: First Class would have fared better as a complete reboot. Too much baggage they had to work around to make things fit. It all seemed so unnecessary, and this is coming from someone who adores Singer's two films. The casting of January Jones as Emma was plain terrible. The woman couldn't be more wooden and bland. The Angel character seemed pointless and quite stupid as well. She was clearly thrown in just to have someone flip sides, and really, who cares? The actress did nothing to endear me whatsoever to the character to make me care in the slightest whether she joined the bad guys or not. Same could be said for Darwin. He gets killed off too quickly for me to honestly give a crap. Professor X, Magneto, and Shaw were all fantastic. Beast and Banshee were good as well, but the rest of the film (and cast) could have used some serious reworking.

Edited by Jeebus Cripes, Jun 9, 2012 @ 3:19 AM.

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#85

PhineasPoe

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Posted Jun 9, 2012 @ 1:44 PM

I liked X-Men: First Class, but I felt their was way too much going on: buddy movie, teen comedy, thriller, and then there's the plot holes.
I think the X-Men reboot should have been a trilogy: the first movie should have focused solely on Charles and Xavier and their burgeoning friendship and conflicting ideologies; the second movie on the founding of Charles' school, Magneto's discontent with Charles' approach to dealing with the government encroaching on mutant rights; and the third would deal with their final split.
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#86

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Posted Jun 9, 2012 @ 2:05 PM

I would have been a lot warmer to X-Men: First Class if at least one female mutant in the movie had been a good guy. The closest thing the movie had to a heroine should not have been a powerless mundane (Moira McTaggart).

Speaking of her, well, I like Rose Byrne, but it would have been nice if her character had been written as the scientist she is in the comics.
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#87

FoolishWanderer

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Posted Jun 9, 2012 @ 5:52 PM

And Scottish. But can she do a Scottish accent? The world may never know.
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#88

Wiendish Fitch

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Posted Jun 9, 2012 @ 7:45 PM

I do love X-Men: First Class, even though it is very flawed. I thought Moira was kind of boring, and it would have been nice if Rose Byrne had done a Scottish accent. And Angel was just superfluous and dumb.
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#89

Jeebus Cripes

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Posted Jun 10, 2012 @ 7:11 PM

It always bothered me how Singer and co. managed to ignore characters nationalities, but more than that, some of the characters deviated so much from the comics. Rogue and Iceman come to mind. The age thing doesn't bother me nearly so much as their personalities, or lack thereof. Storm comes to mind as well, though I'm not sure how much is Singer's fault, considering how horrible Halle is in the role. I also hated how stupid Sabertooth is portrayed in the first film. I much prefer him in Wolverine:Origins, but thats the only thing I liked in that film.
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#90

lastdaughterfk

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Posted Jun 10, 2012 @ 10:11 PM

Rogue and Iceman come to mind. The age thing doesn't bother me nearly so much as their personalities, or lack thereof.


I would agree with Iceman but Rogue was like this when she started in the comics, scared and easily led on by the adults around her. She didn't developed her sexy side till she was part of the X-men for a while is just that the movies never allowed her to grow up till what she was.
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