February 2014 Movie Prequel Guide: A Checklist
Over the weekend, we flipped the calendar from January to February 2014. While that means a few things, for moviegoers and Film Equals followers, it’s time for a new Prequel Guide. As always, I’ll breakdown this month’s book-to-film adaptations, remakes, sequels, and everything in between. I’ll categorize the prequels into Essential, Useful, and Extra based on necessity.
In chronological order, here we go:
‘The Monuments Men’ by Robert M. Edsel – George Clooney’s next directorial effort is based on a novel by Robert M. Edsel…which is, of course, based on true events. If you want a complete history, I’d check out the book first.
‘Vampire Academy’ by Richelle Mead – Vampire Academy becomes the next in the long list of popular book adaptations this year (and beyond). Although this probably won’t be anywhere near the other franchises, there is potential for this thing to blow up. ‘Vampire Academy’ is the first of six books, so read it if you get a chance.
The RoboCop film franchise – The latest RoboCop film reaffirms that Hollywood is definitely running out of ideas. From the outside, it looks a lot like last year’s Total Recall. If you want something to compare it to (and probably some ammo against the newest film), I’d watch the three film franchise that ran from 1987-1993.
RoboCop: The Series – There was also a live-action TV series that ran 22 total episodes if you want even more!
RoboCop: Prime Directives – You can also find four episodes of this 2001 miniseries.
RoboCop: The Animated Series – For animated fans, there are 12 30-minute episodes of The Animated Series.
RoboCop: Alpha Commando – The most RoboCop TV episodes come from the 1998-1999 animated series. There are 40 total episodes.
Video Games – The franchise continued with various video game iterations as well.
Comic Books – Marvel, Dark Horse, and Avatar Press Comics all released differing lines of RoboCop comics if you want to check those extras out.
About Last Night (1986 film) – Steve Pink’s newest, About Last Night, film is actually a remake of a 1986 film that starred Rob Lowe and Demi Moore. I’d watch the first if you haven’t yet.
‘Sexual Perversity in Chicago’ by David Mamet – Although it may be hard, both About Last Night films are based on a 1974 play. It was written by David Mamet.
‘Endless Love’ by Scott Spencer – Another movie, another book that came first. This source material is by Scott Spencer and released back in 1979. Again, if you have time, it might not be a bad idea.
‘Winter’s Tale’ by Mark Helprin – Add Mark Helprin’s 1983 novel to the list, as a version of Winter’s Tale will come to screen this month, too.
‘Thérèse Raquin’ by Emile Zola – Next up would be a film adaptation of Emile Zola’s novel (then play). This one might be tougher to get into since it is noticeably older than the others (and in French). Still, to many it is considered a classic.
‘Kaze Tachinu’ by Hayao Miyazaki – Miyazaki’s revered animated film The Wind Rises (which showed up on the Academy Awards nominations) was based on his own manga series. Like the books, you should try to read them before the movie. That series was actually based on a short story by Tatsuo Hori, so that might be worth checking out, too.
Alright, get to work before this weekend (and beyond)!
Follow me on Twitter @jmacle