The screenwriters for God of War tell you how it is going to be borrowing the familiar logline of "Kratos Begins"
Another day, another bit of news about the development of a video game movie. In this case we have some thoughts from the Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton (PACIFIC RIM, FEAST, SAW IV), the screenwriters currently hard at work on GOD OF WAR. For reasons unkown they were hired to do a new draft of the original adaptation by David Self (ROAD TO PERDITION), and recently took the time out of their busy work to elaborate about their perspective on the story, the thematic meat of the thing, and where it's going (complete with requisite Nolan BATMAN analogy).
Not that reference the way Nolan built up Batman is bad or anything - it worked because it's effective - it's just... well, it's what a lot of folks are doing these days. But hey - if it worked for Channing Tatum and Peter Pan as a reference point, then by the beard of Zeus it can work for Kratos and GOD OF WAR too! Nah, enough of my snark. It makes sense. There's just a hell of a lot of story to stuff in to a single film, and I don't honestly see how what is being described as a traditional three-act sctructure is going to cut it. I'm ready to be surprised though, honest!
There is still no director attached - right now Melton and Dunstan are just working on cracking the story. They've got some good ideas/perspective, and I'm looking forward to seeing what happens. In the meantime, here are the screenwriters to tell you all about it:
"In the same way that Batman was grounded with Christopher Nolan's rendition, we were attempting to do that with Kratos so that when we meet him -- like they're doing in this newest game, which is sort of a prequel to the original -- we're seeing him before he became the Ghost of Sparta, when he was just a Spartan warrior and he had family and kids."
"In the game... there's that attack from the barbarians and Kratos has to call upon Ares to help him. Really, that's going to be our first act break. Before then, he's going to be mortal, and he's going to have his family. We're going to learn about him and understand how he operates. So it's potentially 30 minutes -- give or take -- of building up this character so that, when he does turn and becomes the Ghost of Sparta, we understand him as a human and we understand the journey that he's going to take. We're emotionally invested, so that it could go beyond just this one movie."
In regards to switching gears from low-budget horror to larger-than-life action, Dunstan and Melton couldn't be happier. 'There's almost an element of relief. When it comes to God of War, we are first-time visitors, and we have a wealth of imagination that has built up from our appreciation for the sword-and-sandals films of our history... We know it doesn't have to be done for a million bucks in a garage. [Laughs] That helps, too. But also, with a bigger movie like God of War, you have to go quite a bit deeper into the character as opposed to a horror film, in which you generally need to get things going; people are concerned that the audience won't have patience, so it's go go go go go.'"
"With God of War, the studio's saying, 'We're going to spend $150 million to make this movie. We really need to understand this character and get behind him and feel his pain and feel his emotions so that, when he is in these giant set pieces, we're in there with him and we're feeling it.' That is a critique of some of these big action films is that they often get too big and just become noise; you're not invested in the character."
"There was a recent movie, which will remain nameless, that depicted the main character without any fear. When you do that, how are we supposed to be afraid through him? How are we supposed to gauge anything as a legitimate threat? It's become this dulling element. So with this, we take an intimidating presence such as Kratos, fighting and pursuing a bloodthirsty vengeance trail to the God of War. How do we make that genuinely scary? The man of action must prevail, but it's got to hurt to getting there."
Speaking of hurt, the writers also have big plans for Ares, who will become a more proactive villain in their adaptation. "In the game, you know, he's immortal, and he doesn't really do much besides raid Athens. So we're trying to build him up a bit more, too, so that he can become a true villain."
For the uninitiated amongst you, this art shows Pandora's Temple. Not only does its design leave Jigsaw in the dust, but it is dragged around the desert by Kronos the f***ing TITAN. That's how massive it is.
|Extra Tidbit:||I'm pretty sure that his "nameless movie" comment is a dig on THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, to which I say that he's right - it's hard to connect with a character who doesn't have fear. Fear is a part of our humanity. If only the film had spent a whole act and a half re-establishing that humanity through fear... oh, wait...|