Movies & TV / Columns

411 Fact or Fiction Movies/TV: Should Top Gun 2 Be Made?

February 5, 2016 | Posted by Ben Piper
Top Gun

I get to have minor surgery tomorrow. Yay? To say I’m not looking forward to it would be a vast understatement. But hey, what am I going to do? It’s not like I don’t need it to happen.

So on that cheery note, it’s time for Fact or Fiction. This week we’ve got Mathew Sforcina and Edward Tripp to help us out with things. Let’s see what’s up with them…

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies will turn out to be a good time at the movies.

Edward Tripp : FICTION – I had to lean more towards fiction on this one despite being based on an enjoyable the book series. Even with a cast that includes personal favorites from House Lannister (Charles Dance and Lena Headey) and the 11th Doctor (Matt Smith), there is more negatives about this adaptation. For one the first film based on Seth Grahame-Smith’s work, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, was a disjointed and mildly entertaining film that was better suited to wait till Netflix category than must see in the theaters. Secondly, the film is helmed by a director, Burr Steers, whose major film credits include one indy success and two Zac Efron films. This does not invoke major confidence in his ability to direct this unique period piece. Plus after watching the trailer I couldn’t help but draw comparisons to Sucker Punch minus the Snyder-esque visual style. This could be a positive or negative for some. In the end I’ll eventually watch this when it makes it’s wait to Netflix or one of the movie channels, but not really one my list of must see in the theaters.

Mathew Sforcina : FICTION – The problem with this is that a major reason the book worked (I can’t speak for the follow-up) was that there was the constantly present gag of the original text still being there, just with zombies added in. I know that’s bloody obvious, but the thing is, both halves of the story worked by themselves, and the constant switching back and forth was seamless and added a lot to the humor of the book. The movie… does not look to have any of that. It’s just a zombie film as set in 19th century England. Not that that can’t work as a concept, that would actually be kinda cool, but all signs point to this being a rather drab zombie flick that relies on the ‘joke’ of it being P&P but with PG13 Zombie violence in it without actually doing anything to make that joke work. On the page, the joke’s enough. Here, you need more, and I’m not seeing it. And PG13? Really? Really?

You’d be down with Arnold Schwarzenegger returning to play Conan The Conqueror.

Edward Tripp : FACT – I would be down for this provided it would be the conclusion to the Arnold led Conan movies. The premise of an old and grizzled Conan struggling to keep his throne intrigues me. There is nostalgia factor in seeing him take the role that made him a star once again. Arnold and Conan go hand in hand like Vince and his love for muscular men. The potential to see King Conan make his last stand in one final epic battle would be enough for me to see this film. I hope that the cast and crew they sign will give this series the proper sendoff it deserves or at least set it up as a passing of the torch. Hail to King Conan.

Mathew Sforcina : FACT – Yeah, in an industry awash with remakes and reboots and ripoffs, it’s always nice when they actually continue the story rather than retread it. Not that Conan hasn’t been rebooted at least once, but it would be nice to have a functional reboot pay off the original work and then make a new storyline rather than just tell the same story again. Hopefully we get a passing of the torch to… Well, Dwayne Johnson would be logical choice, right?

You have no interest in the Cabin Fever remake.

Edward Tripp : FACT – This one really made me scratch my head when I heard it announced. For one it will be based on the same script as the original 2002 version except with new characters (and actors of course). So most of the suspense and shock value of this remake is pretty much thrown out the window. Adding to this fact the debut trailer helped further spoil the movie. Without Eli Roth directing this feel more like an “Eli Roth presents” a Travis Zariwny film. There really is no logical explanation why this film is being remade. Maybe it’s simply a money grab geared towards the younger horror film audience.

Mathew Sforcina : FACT – I can’t help but wonder if the “same script, new characters” thing is a curveball, and it’ll actually be wildly different, the virus is a curse or something. Not that it matters, I’m not a huge fan of the gory horror flick, and thus had little interest in the original and even less in this remake. I presume Eli Roth wants to do it with a decent budget this time? Hey, more power to him, but I could not care less. Unless I’m right about the curveball, in which case I care very deeply.

SWITCH!

Hail, Caesar will be a very good Coen Brother’s comedy.

Mathew Sforcina : FACT, I think. I mean, if you’re asking if this will get to the heights of the Brothers’ best comedy work, then that’s a possibly. But if you are asking if it’ll be a good comedy, as made by the Coen Brothers? That’s almost a shoe-in. I’m a fan of the Coen Brothers, and the talent they’ve got involved in this one almost guarantees it’ll be at worst an ok Coen Brothers film which is normally a good bet. So yeah, I’m looking forward to this one, and it should be good by normal standards. But by Coen Brothers… That’s a little harder to judge just yet.

Edward Tripp : FACT – At least on paper the formula of The Coen Brothers + great ensemble cast = great comedy film. Their work has always been entertaining and based on the trailer I can’t find too many reason why Hail, Caesar won’t be a fun time at the movie. I liken it to a more comedic Ray Donovan with the backdrop of 50’s Hollywood. It will be a nice change of pace from the upcoming superhero film season and will likely it will finish in the top 3 of the box office for the next few weeks. If you need a movie for your Valentine’s Day date that will be entertaining and not just tripe may I suggest this offering from the Coen Brothers.

You would like to see Top Gun 2 made.

Mathew Sforcina : FICTION – I’ve honestly never seen the appeal of Top Gun. It’s never struck me as being good. Sure, the action beats are well made, but the utter dreck that is every scene not involving planes in the air just ruin the film for me. So no, a sequel holds little appeal for me. And yes, I know I said not three questions ago how I appreciate films that aren’t straight remakes and instead follow on and such, I get that if I’m all for Conan 3 I should be on board for Top Gun 2, but I feel the need. The need to not care about a Navy recruitment advertising campaign.

Edward Tripp : FICTIONTop Gun encapsulated the true essences of the 80’s. Flash forward to the present day and I can’t motivate myself enough to see a modern Top Gun sequel. I can see it already trying desperately to appeal to the “younger” movie audience and loaded with CGI (it’s Bruckheimer after all). Tom Cruise is better off spending time making the follow up to Mission Impossible: Rouge Nation. There has never been a time that I have clamored for a Top Gun 2….The Rock 2 on the other hand…

Joseph Fiennes is a horrible choice to play Michael Jackson.

Mathew Sforcina : FICTION – If you’re arguing that this is a horrible choice based on the fact that you think Fiennes is a bad actor or that you don’t think he can play the role, fine, I can see the argument but I don’t agree with it, he’s a competent actor and there are plenty of worse actors out there. But the main issue isn’t that, it’s the race thing. And I can understand the racelifting issue, and I agree it should be considered when casting roles. But the problem here is that unless you’re doing something silly like using CGI or filming the film solely POV, while Michael Jackson was African-American by nationality and race, he looked more like Joseph Fiennes at the end of his life than he looked like Chris Brown or whoever. Regardless of why his skin was that color, it seems odd that you’d go through a lot of make up just to be able to hire an actor who was of the same race as Mr. Jackson. If Fiennes had to go through blackface or anything, yes, this would be a horrible choice. But in this one case, I don’t think the blanket hammer of racelifting applies. I eagerly await being told off by the comments below.

Edward Tripp : FACT, but not because of the acting acumen of Joseph Fiennes. This has more to do with the producers seemingly being oblivious to the unavoidable backlash in this casting. Being a minority I can understand the reasons behind the backlash towards the casting. If they cast a non-Asian actor to play Bruce Lee I’d be furiously tweeting my displeasure. Since whoever in role will likely undergo hours of make-up and prosthesis to recreate Michael Jackson’s appearance during the period would casting a black actor or actress have produced the same level of response? Chances are probably not. It all seems like a sad attempt to generate some buzz around the film in today’s social media driven society. Well congrats it did just that, but I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news. Not all buzz is good. To create this much hate towards a project before it even shoots is not a good way to promote a film. Creating a controversy does not always equal cash. I hate seeing Fiennes, a talented actor, being used as a lightning rod to drum up publicity for what is at best a silly parody film. In the end this will be largely forgotten as the news cycle roles on and election season picks up.

And there it is. Edward and Mathew agree more often than not. Thanks to them both for taking part. See you all next week.

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