Game Over 

Hitman: Another Videogame Movie. Sigh.

Videogames and cinema are fundamentally different entertainment experiences. One is based on interactivity, the other on passivity. And whenever Hollywood attempts to cram a videogame into a movie—as they have done with Super Mario Bros., and Street Fighter, and Tomb Raider, and Doom, and now Hitman—it is a colossal fuck-up. It does not matter that cinema is incredibly versatile, nor that the burgeoning art form of videogames is changing the very definition of what can be classified as entertainment. All that is irrelevant: Turning a videogame into a film is like trying to make a chocolate cake when the only ingredient you have is orange juice.

Hitman commits the worst crime that any movie is capable of: It is boring. Fantastically, astonishingly, yawn-inducingly boring. There is no story to tell, and there are no characters. Instead, there is a rudimentary concept (a bald guy who kills people) and generic settings (decayed Russian cities, cheesy nightclubs, etc.). In the Hitman videogames, the player's task is to skulk through these locales, finding creative ways to kill people. They aren't very good videogames, but at least one can take the bland, uninspired concept and attempt to have fun with it, change it, control it.

In the Hitman movie, the audience is given that bland, uninspired concept, and then forced to simply watch it. There is a hitman, played by Timothy Olyphant, who is pathetically unthreatening due to the fact he looks like an eight-year-old boy. There is a Russian love interest who valiantly battles a mascara addiction. There are so-so action sequences that are punctuated with splatters of brain and splashes of blood. There are even some tits, just to ensure that the film's target audience (actual eight-year-old boys) will not walk away disappointed after BitTorrenting the Hitman film between Xbox Live sessions. There is a steadfast refusal to respect the mediums of either videogames or film. Game over. No one wins.

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