The film industry is stuck in a quagmire of ‘dark reboots’ and superhero films and mainly a combination of the two. I’m sick of it. I hate going to see heroes (but they’re flawed heroes remember!) growl at each other before sending their foes to bloodless PG-13 deaths. I don’t go to the cinema to be reminded that the world is a miserable place where people pay taxes and get raped, I go to the cinema to be excited and enjoy myself. Even the films I like that I see nowadays don’t make me walk out the movies feeling like I had a good time.
Starship Troopers did. If you haven’t seen it you should. Needlessly violent, funny, self aware and exciting. Short summary: future nazis bombard kids with propaganda for army. Kids join army and fight hideous spider aliens that bite people in half. Bad acting and ridiculous gore throughout. It works on so many levels. It’s an engaging action movie, it has fairly well thought out satirical elements about propaganda and unquestioningly serving your nations interests. Sound a little dark? Not really, it’s mainly shot at daytime with a cheerful colour palette. Contrasted with the fascistic nature of the society depicted and insane violence this gives the film a weird vibe, but a completely engaging and never depressing one.
More movies should learn from this. You can carry a serious message with levity. In fact, most of the director Paul Verhoevens other films also do this. Robocop for example. I’m just sick of watching another Batman clone where everything is a shade of dark blue or orange and muscular (though never comically so) heroes talk tough at each other and deliver lines about things and oh I don’t care.
Go watch Starship Troopers and be inspired to make something fun please Hollywood. Comedy and SERIOUS STORIES are not mutually exclusive. Experiment more!