Have you noticed something about the majority of new releases from Hollywood over the past 10 years? They Suck. No, not ALL the new movies suck, but there is a trend that I’m seeing with the major movie studios over the past few years, and I’d like to explain my thoughts and opinion on why the new movies suck so badly.
Remakes and Sequels
I call it “Deja Moo” meaning that I’ve seen this cow poop before. There has been a huge increase in the number of remakes and sequels. From “Rocky” to “Batman” and “Planet of the Apes” a large number of releases are films that have been done before. Clearly, not all the new movies suck. One of the recent re-makes was exponentially better than the originals in 2018’s “A Star is Born”. The original in 1937 was good and won an Oscar for best screenplay. Judy Garland was nominated for Best Actress in the 1954 version but didn’t win. The 1976 version with Barbara Streisand and Kris Kristofferson won an Oscar for best Music, Original Song.
Make no mistake, Hollywood loves to reheat the left-overs on successful intellectual properties (IP), and the best examples of this are the Marvel Comics movies, and the Star Wars franchise. So why do the studios do it? I call it the “the movie made us money the first time, it will make us money each time we do it” way of thinking. Ride that cinematic horse until it is clearly dead. The best example of this is “Sharknado” versions 1 thru 6, the Suckiest movie of all time.
Has Hollywood Run Out of Ideas?
One theory for the number of re-makes and sequels is that they have run out of ideas for new and different scripts. I’m here to tell you that is not the case. As a screenwriter, I’ve been active in screenwriting competitions for the past few years. I’ve read some of the winning scripts. These scripts are wonderfully conceived, expertly written, entertaining, and unfortunately will never be made into a movie. Why? Because the new scripts have been written by unknowns.
So why would a script that is incredibly good be ignored by all the studios? In my opinion, it’s because studios are not run by mavericks who go out on a limb anymore. The studios are run and managed by corporate boards who want only guaranteed money makers. The corporate boards are not going to invest or gamble upwards of $50-75M to make a movie on a script or writer without a winning track record.
So Many Bombs
It always comes down to money doesn’t it? Studios are afraid of losing money. That makes sense. None of us like to lose when we invest in something. Let’s take a look at one of my favorite examples, the 2013 Bomb known as “The Lone Ranger”. The IMDB listing shows six screenwriters. I’m assuming one of the listed writers originally pitched the script to Jerry Bruckheimer and he loved it enough to buy it. Disney then hired a new writer to re-write it, and then another one, and then another one. Then, Bruckheimer got Johnny Depp to sign on to the project, so it can’t lose, right? It’s a huge cast, and the budget kept expanding and exploding. Before long, it took an estimated $260 MILLION dollars to complete. Even with Disney’s expert marketing, the movie still sucked and only took in $89M. Don’t expect to see a sequel anytime soon.
Directors Writing Their Own Scripts
There are plenty of good scripts out there that would create movies that do not suck at all. Those are ignored by Hollywood. The giant Hollywood loophole is that if you are a successful director, you will probably be able to convince a studio to shoot a movie that the director wrote. The problem is, not all good directors are talented writers.
Yes, there are lots of genius Director Writers, including Stanley Kubrick, Tarantino, The Coen brothers, Frank Darabont, and of course George Lucas.
I’m talking about movies that suck like 2019’s “Cats” written by director Tom Hooper, “Captive State” written and directed by Rupert Wyatt, and 2019’s “The Kitchen” miserably written and directed by Andrea Berloff. Stick to the director’s chair, and work with one of the many unknown but talented writers out there.
More CGI, Less Acting
This, I think, is the number one reason that many new movies suck. As more and more studios become enamored with computer generated effects, the less emphasis they put on actors to show us real emotion. I love well done CGI, but without a great story, emotional acting, and powerful cinematography, your new movie will suck to epic proportions.
2016’s “Gods of Egypt” is one example where the director and studio paid too much money and attention to CGI and resulted in one of the newer movies that suck. Then there is the whole “Transformers” franchise. It’s not just that the IP has been made too many times (parts 1 thru 8 at last count) It’s just the same story over and over with bigger and louder CGI each time. I can hear Michael Bay and the board at Paramount Pictures saying “Our last Transformers made money, let’s do another one”.
2020’s “Sonic The Hedgehog” is in multiple categories of new movies that suck. I’m sure the studio executives decided that any movie taken from a video game has money making success written all over it. “We don’t need a good script, but hire that guy that’s really fast and see if he can pop out a story by Friday. We’ll add enough computer generated animation, the kids will go nuts to see this.”
Then the Corona Virus Hit
When the Corona Virus hit us this year, all the studios immediately halted all production, which sucks even more than the movies that were already sucking. I have been hearing that as soon as this thing blows over, they will resume filming Sharknado 7. I can’t wait. Comment below on whether New Movies Suck and why. Until then, pass the popcorn.