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Today's Exercise - A little less than a happy high — LiveJournal
Today's Exercise
Pick a movie and make one small change that would somehow make the movie infinitely better.

The Matrix - After shooting the hell out of the lobby of the federal building, Neo and Trinity mount an elevator that was conspicuously silent in the original film. Decked out in their leather and wrap-arounds, the characters seem to have laid aside part of their humanity and have become more like the programs they are attempting to fight. What it lacks is a sense of creepy not-quite-normalcy that is found elsewhere in the characters' interactions with the Matrix. Instead of a quiet elevator, I would like to see "The Girl from Ipanema" playing as they enter the elevator. As a bonus, it doubles as an homage to The Blues Brothers.

The Dark Knight - The Joker pitted the good citizen commuters of Gotham against a boatload of convicted felons in a variant on the classic game theory problem, the Prisoner's Dilemma. Most people I've spoken to feel that even though ultimately everyone made the "right" choice - whether through moral strength or simple cowardice - it wasn't the "realistic" choice, especially for the citizens of Gotham. Though it fits with the moralistic and hopeful ending, the moralistic and hopeful ending seems out of synch with the rest of the story. One of the ferries should have gone down, and given the Joker's particular madness, it would have been far more likely that he would have lied about which trigger did what. There's one school of thought that thinks that the triggers should have blown both ships, but I want something less spectacular. I would have liked to have seen the commuters trip the switch, only to have their own ferry blow up. Then we're left with a boatload of felons who by all appearances blew up law abiding citizens and an angry city that would be screaming for their blood. That's the chaos the Joker was working for, and not the neat and tidy closure that we were given.
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cook_ting From: cook_ting Date: August 21st, 2009 03:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
I just listened to a great Escape Pod story about a video store that stocks movies from a parallel universe. Strange synchronicity.
komos From: komos Date: August 21st, 2009 04:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
In my parallel universe, George Lucas would never have gotten hold of CGI technology, and Darth Vader wouldn't be a lame whiny kid.
tenillypo From: tenillypo Date: August 21st, 2009 04:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
Damn. That's kind of a hard one. There are plenty of movies I think could be improved by taking a chainsaw to the script, but small changes? Hmmm...

Okay, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith (I know, I know...the other prequels need a chainsaw approach, but I actually really liked most of this one) - During the final confrontation at the end, Anakin lashes out in fury at Obi-Wan, accidentally injuring his pregnant wife, who later dies of her injuries after giving birth to the twins, and thus making Anakin's vision of her death a self-fulfilling prophecy, yada, yada, yada. Why is this better? Because I CANNOT STAND the fact that the mother of Leia fucking Organa (and Luke, but come on, I think we all know which twin was actually more bad ass) would just give up and die of a broken heart, abandoning her infant children to a world where their father is a megalomaniac psychopath. I mean, seriously. WTF, Lucas.
komos From: komos Date: August 21st, 2009 04:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think the who tri-quel needs a reboot, but I can totally see this. It still doesn't explain how Leia remembers her mother was "very beautiful" - unless she is just that badass to be aware as a newborn. At this point, I'd be willing to grant that if I could somehow erase the Giant Assbeasts of Naboo from my memory. I'd let J.J. Abrams take a shot at the arc if he told this story in one movie, spent one showing Vader's hunting of the Jedi, and one more showing the origin stories of some of the other characters and the beginnings of the Alliance.
tenillypo From: tenillypo Date: August 21st, 2009 05:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
They actually cut a whole sub-plot of Mon Mothma, Padme, and Bail Organa basically laying the first seeds of the Alliance during the last movie. Which also pissed me off, because at least that showed Padme doing something more interesting than just being pregnant.

But yeah, if we're talking chainsaw approach to the prequels, I would start the thing in the middle of the Clone Wars and proceed from there. There would be no miraculous virgin birth for Anakin, no Midi-chlorians, and a lot less detailed discussion of trade regulations. Anakin and Padme would meet as young adults -- she can still be a senator, and he can still be assigned to protect her -- and have an actual romance, with dialog not penned by George "you're smooth, not like sand" Lucas. Padme would somehow live long enough for Leia to vaguely remember her, and we'd get to see the Alliance come together. For a start.
komos From: komos Date: August 21st, 2009 08:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
Somehow he made Buck Rogers in the 25th Century look like high art.
cris From: cris Date: August 21st, 2009 04:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
in our bi-weekly D&D game, there was a scenario that I was designing that involved the party infiltrating or fighting their way into a skyship port. The skyship in question was tethered to a tower that was accessible by a funicular at ground level. If the PCs fought their way into the base and tried to ride the funicular, I was going to start playing "Girl From Ipanema" and told them that they had until the end of the song to figure out what their plan was. Then the doors would open and the chaos would resume.

Unfortunately, they chose to fly up to skyship invisibly and skip that whole part.

I would change Pirates and World End and replace the redcoats who attack Sao Feng's hideouts with mercenary Japanese assassins that were hired by the East India Trading company. Because that was the finest opportunity to do ninjas v. pirates, and it's a travesty that the opportunity was passed up.
komos From: komos Date: August 21st, 2009 08:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
That would have been brilliant. I blame Disney.
From: couplingchaos Date: August 21st, 2009 04:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
I like this exercise. :) I don't have any examples to offer at the moment, but I'm enjoying yours.
komos From: komos Date: August 21st, 2009 08:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'ma leave a light on for this thread. I'm guessing there will be more.
c_m_i From: c_m_i Date: August 21st, 2009 06:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
Every movie could be made infinitely better by one simple addition:

The Glaive from Krull.
gatz From: gatz Date: August 21st, 2009 06:40 pm (UTC) (Link)


ooh, and the Ajunte Dagger from The Golden Child.
komos From: komos Date: August 21st, 2009 07:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm not sure I'd limit the betterness effect to movies only. It's the Glaive, for god's sake...
why_style From: why_style Date: August 21st, 2009 08:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
They did The Girl From Ipanema in the elevator during the battle scene in the home improvement store at the end of Mr. and Mrs. Smith.

totally agreed on the Dark Knight ending. The way it eneded was a total disconnect from teh rest of the film. In typical American/Hollywood fashion it had to have a "happy" ending...
komos From: komos Date: August 21st, 2009 08:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's a fairly standard comedic trope, but it would be exactly the sort of mistake the machines would make in crafting the reality. The brothers W. missed a great opportunity, I think.

And seriously? I can't believe that the Joker wouldn't have thought of that scenario.
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