Thursday, October 28

Terminator vs Rocky? What’s next for the movie versus? | Movie

LLike you, I was convinced that the movie genre versus died five years ago. What started out as a foolish and conscious method of putting homeless people in their seats had hardened into the inexcusable grim pomposity of Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice. Any rational human being would view a movie like BvS as an inconsequential amusement joke. And yet there it was; three hours of heavy emo nonsense where the cinematic equivalent of two toys banging together was treated as nothing less than an actual biblical text. Why bother making another movie versus after the agony of Marthagate?

Well now that Godzilla vs Kong is out, it looks like we’re back. Because Godzilla v Kong is everything anyone wants from a movie like this. Two big, dumb animals fight each other in new and different ways for almost no reason, and it’s all over in less than two hours.

Better yet, the movie understands how stupid it is. These may qualify as spoilers, so skip this paragraph if you haven’t seen it yet, but the movie starts off with King Kong taking a shower. There’s a bit in the middle where Godzilla literally blows a hole to the center of the Earth just because of the off chance that some debris will hit King Kong over the head in the process. There’s a skyscraper-height kung-fu lizard robot that, although it’s apparently the bad guy, you end up supporting. There are several scenes in which humans run into danger with such impressive cunning that you’ll genuinely come to believe that the original intention was to score all of them with Yakety Sax. Everything is dumber than a fart box, but the movie never tries to stay away from it. It’s nice.

And now, frankly, all I want to do is watch movies. Where once there was a wasteland, now I see nothing but promise. The Monsterverse clearly needs to go on forever. If you can keep this tone, instead of falling into empty awe of the far worse Godzilla: King of the Monsters, then you deserve to run and run. Let’s bring back Gigan (essentially a giant ninja wielding a knife), or King Caesar (a kind of huge hornless dog that can only be awakened if a princess sings a full three-minute song to him) and make they fight Godzilla and Kong. Heck, let’s get the Cloverfield monster back into the mix, and one or two of that Pacific Rim stuff too. The more the better. The Monsterverse is basically WWE at this point, so we can turn it into a Royal Rumble as well.

Godzilla vs Kong - two big silly animals fighting each other for no reason.

Godzilla vs Kong – two big silly animals fighting each other for no reason. Photograph: AP

Then I suggest going back and correcting the mistakes of the past. 1966’s Billy the Kid vs. Dracula, for example, featured almost no scenes of Billy the Kid fighting Dracula. Let’s change that. Let’s make a new movie in which, from the first frame, Billy the Kid and Dracula only Tom and Jerry take off their panties like clapping hands. Imagine the last third of Home Alone, but starring a cowboy and a vampire. Brilliant, right? Or let’s get another Alien vs Predator shot, but this time there is only one Predator and one Alien, and they are both 300 meters tall, and no one adequately explains what is happening. You would look at that. You’re angry because you can’t see that anymore.

And then the fun can really begin; looking for other franchises looking for suitable candidates instead of movies. God knows there are a lot of them. You could revive the Terminator series by making a movie where an old T-800 has a boxing match with Rocky Balboa. Or a movie in which James Bond fights The Rock and Jason Statham from Hobbs and Shaw. Or, and I’m just spitting here, Harry Potter vs Jurassic Park.

It’s equally puzzling that Disney, which produced seven of the top ten films of 2019, has yet to get involved in this. Imagine Snow White vs Cinderella. Imagine Aladdin versus Wreck-It Ralph. Imagine, and I mean this, Frozen vs. The Lion King. Imagine Elsa from Frozen fighting a real lion for two hours and being mutilated every time she started singing.

And then, with the formula for this sort of thing definitely settled, let’s get another shot at Batman vs Superman. Make it lighter and less rain soaked. Make Batman and Superman shake each other with pans and cricket bats, and edit tons of SPROING sound effects whenever they do. Have Batman hit Superman with an antique vase in no time, and have the owner of the vase stand next to them as it happens, and make his monocle jump on impact. That it lasts exactly 87 minutes, including credits. This is the movie we should have gotten in 2016. And, thanks to the majesty of Godzilla vs Kong, it’s the movie we can have again.

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