Friday, September 21, 2007

"Transformers" and "Alvin and the who?"

It is no new thing for Hollywood to adapt popular tv series from the small screen to the big screen. Typically in Hollywood history there was not such a time gap from when the series ran to when the characters migrated to the bigger screen. There are many reasons, in my opinion, why this model of adaptation works better than waiting longer. For one thing the show still has a following and audience are either saddened that there beloved series is being canceled or the audience at one time enjoyed the show but found themselves not able or wanting to follow the week by week drama and are happy to see a condensed version of the characters they once loved.

Star Trek was like that for me. I liked the the tv shows and the movies... the movies were just big budget versions of the shows I loved... same characters... actors... But now it feels like Hollywood is finding it necessary to revive decade old and older shows to bring to the big screen. Fine I guess... but is it?

Tranformers has reinvigorated the race for making eights cartoons into movies... If grossed worldwide: $692,958,051. It was a $150 million budget movie! That is insane... I think the flood gate has just broken open and get ready for the flood. And here they come. I haven't seen Transformers, but my friend put it this way... "It's like making out with a girl you don't know... fun at the time if you don't think about it... kind of awkward afterward at school." The point is that it wasn't good for the right reasons. It took something that many people had an attachment too and made it into something else.

Don't get me wrong... I am not against finding new ways to tell old stories... but I'm not sure of what I think about resurrecting old tv hits for movies, ten to twenty years after the fact. It kind of pollutes the image. It never holds up to your childhood memories and then you rent the dvd of the old cartoons and it wrecks it even more as you realize you had a different perception of what was good.

The point is... Is it worth revisting these old childhood memories in this fashion? I think yes... but let me add that only as the exception, not the rule. People say it is making it new for the next generation... But is it far to rob the generation that loved it so much? In reality Micheal Bay's Transformers wasn't for the little kids of today as the cartoon was for my generation... That film was aimed at... who else... my generation. It was Transformers for grown ups. And really all it does is make me long for the simplicity of entertainment of yesteryear (which was all in my childhood perception).

I like to remember those childhood shows as "great stories" with "awesome animation" that were the "most entertaining shows" and "why can't shows be like that anymore?..." So now comes Alvin and the Chipmunks.

I cringe... If you haven't seen the trailer you won't understand... or maybe you do. Alvin eats Theodore's poop. He tells Dave it's a raisin... then he pops it down the hatch. When Dave leaves, he spits it out and tells Theodore, "You owe big time." When I saw that all I could think of is... oh no.

This is the Alvin and the Chipmunks Movie I remember and loved... However it came out at the time of the series (or shortly there after, can't remember). It, like star trek, feature the characters I knew and loved as a kid... The chipmunks were the chipmunks. Doesn't seem to be the case with the new hip hop gangsta chipmunks that are about to defile the big screen. It seems like they are trying to make it cool to those of us who grew up on it?!? Seems hard to do... they were singing chipmunks... Buy yet I have fond memories of listening to eighties covers and Christmas songs in high pitched chipmunk voices... I don't think I want to let this one get ruined...

I am not against making tv shows into feature films, but when is it too old to bring back or old enough? The films may be fine enough... but at what cost?! I myself am not ready to hand in my fond childhood memories for 3D rapping chipmunks...

What does the does the expansive cyberspace intellect have to say? Do you agree? Do you disagree? Other examples for or against?