Friday, December 02, 2011

Today's Pointless, Doomed-to-Suck Reboot is "Starship Troopers"

The problem with Robert Heinlein's "Starship Troopers" is the problem I worry "John Carter" has - being a 'seminal classic' also means that by the time you get to the movies everyone else has already borrowed all the original stuff. Which is why, to my mind, Paul Verhoeven's "Troopers" movie did the only thing you could really DO with the propert after decades of military scifi had picked it's bones clean: Turn Heinlein's quasi-fascist army-fetishism into a scathing - and kind of brilliant - scorched-earth throttling of every bullshit pro-war propaganda flick ever made. I still maintain that, if not for pre-dating the "War On Terror" by many years, it would be the best movie about the "War On Terror" ever made.

So, of course, it's being rebooted.

It would be crazy for them to try and mimic the tone of the first film (or the sequels,) so expect talk of "going back to the source," which will probably also include actually utilizing the "powered robot-suits" that the first film skipped for budgetary reasons. I'm sure it'll result in a serviceable, visually-attractive film... just not one with much going on under the hood.

I could be wrong, of course..


GragSmash said...

I had a hard time being objective about the first movie because Starship Troopers was the first novel I ever read - it was special to me.

Only when I went back and watched the movie without mentally associating it with the book did I find it really enjoyable.

That being said, I want to see a cool alien war movie with power suits!

CrankyStorming said...

Why does everyone keep calling Colombia Sony? Fox isn't just referred to as News Corp, neither is Paramount called Viacom.

vamast said...

I like the old movies. 3 was wired

Mads said...

@ CrankyStorming

Good point. We should start calling Fox Newscorp and Paramount Viacom.

@ vamast

@ Bob

Those sequels don't exist any more than S.Darko does.

No, they don't. I can't hear you LALALALALALA

Anonymous said...

Welp, there goes any hope I ever had of a Warhammer 40K movie being made. If they make another Starship Trooper movie, they'll never make a 40K movie because everyone will think it's ripping off Starship Troopers (which it does, but that's not the point, dammit!)

Anonymous said...

On the topic of young people going off to space boot camp to learn how to fight alien bugs, Enders Game is finally getting made.

Sam said...

I'm just a tad bit disapointed that Bob didn't make the link to the whole article with a hyper-link that read "would you like to know more?"...

That would of made me smile!!!

Joe said...

Again with Starship Troopers? If we're going to get another Heinlein film, how about Stranger in a Strange Land? Or The Moon is a Harsh Mistress?

Matt Jordan said...

Why the fucking fuck? The original isn't even 15 yrs old and it's still bloody brilliant! If ever there WASN"T a movie that needed a remake it was Starship Troopers.

Julian Perez said...

Yeah, I know because John Carter of Mars is so influential people will think it's a rip-off of more recent works when it's actually the OTHER WAY AROUND...yet because it was the first to do a lot of the things others borrowed from, I think the John Carter of Mars series has a lot of creative potential for that reason, just like Astro Boy is more interesting because it was the first story to deal with a robot replacing a lost child, and so because that wasn't a cliche, Astro Boy went to a very different place.

For instance: when the first JCM trailer came out, all my friends unfamiliar with the property were like, "is this like Prince of Persia?" With the new trailer which shows more distinctive Barsoomian characteristics like the Green Men and Martian fliers, nobody is saying it's a rip off of anything anymore.

I don't understand it when other people make an argument like "why do it?" when it comes to continuing old series or trying a new hand at an intellectual property. The answer to the question "why make more movies" or "why make more art" is so we can have more movies and art.

Dave from canada said...

@ Matt jordan

There is no original. Starship troopers was never made into a movie. Heinlein's novel is closer to full metal jacket than the aliens ripoff that Verhoeven spewed out.

This isn't a reboot. It's a "make the movie everyone actually wanted instead of an incoherent self indulgent mess".

There's an excellent chance that all the philosophy and cerebral elements of the book will be left for what amounts to hollywood wanting a new which case it will still be orders of magnitude better than the piece of shit we have now.

biomechanical923 said...

I vaguely remember a scene from Starship Troopers 2.

Some general finds out that the female protagonist is pregnant or had a baby, and he says "Good, we need more meat for the grinder". I thought it was a great criticism on the military-industrial war machine, and I still hear it in my head every time I see some mindless pro-war bullshit on TV.

Dave said...

The original Starship Troopers flick had the balls to pull a gender-bender on Dizzy Flores.

No matter how good or bad the reboot may be, I guarantee you this...... they will never find a woman as hot and/or as talented as Dina Meyer to fill that role. Ever.

Lee Kalba said...

They actually DID try to do the power armor, in the original movie, but it just ended up looking goofy and would have been really expensive to do something that looked silly, in all their tests.
The third movie kind of made that point.
That's not to say a power armor movie couldn't be done well, but it takes skill. Otherwise, you end up with Robot Jocks or the cheesy examples of the anime genre.

Ventithree said...

Holy shit! I just finished reading Starship Troopers for the first time 30 minutes ago. Holy shit!

By the time I was 100 pages in I was like, "Fuck the movie was nothing like this. This is more like some boys diary about all the different ways he was trained, disciplined, lost comrades, jumped through ranks, got lectured through vehicles of Heinlein's superego twice, and never much of the stakes regarding the bug war or let his mother's death affect him with his duties."

The war was there in spite of Rico's military experiences, not the other way around; like some pretend biopic. I realized quickly how incompatible this story was with cinema. No wonder the movie is completely ass-backwards (but fun); otherwise it wouldn't have been an action flick at all.

Still, holy shit the timing!

Also, power armor for the win. What the fuck was the point of hearing the soldiers being called apes if they couldn't wear the damn ape suits?

Dave from canada said...

@ Ventithree

Because that was the opening quote to the first chapter and that's where Verhoeven stopped reading, so he assunmed it was important. Had he been literate enough to press on through the 3rd chapter, he;d realize that "on the bounce" is far more appropriate.

I do disagree that it isn't compatible with film. There are plenty of great action sequences in the book or alluded to, and alot of the political stuff could be shortened and still remain thought provoking.

I figure an avatar style filming would work quiet well, have the main character talking to his diary, adding context tot eh more action oriented stuff we see on screen.

A good half of the book is simply describing things anyway, That chapter long discussion of power armour would take a few minutes on film.

Anonymous said...

Who wants to bet that they forget that main character Johnny Rico is actually Juan, a Filipino living in Argentina?