If you haven’t noticed, Hollywood seems to be in a bit of a “original content” funk lately. Reboots, sequels, and prequels, oh my! But (and I’ve talked about this before), the newest, HOTTEST trend in Hollywood seems to be just flat out taking a script that has already existed, changing a few character traits and re-shooting the whole thing lock, stock and two smoking barrels (they are probably doing it with that movie, too).
Let’s check out the latest iteration of this trend. Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you, R.I.P.D.:
The film is so close to Men in Black that I honestly thought it might be a tie in well into the 2 minute mark. It isn’t. Although, that would be pretty cool actually. Like if Agent J were to find out that there are many threats humans aren’t aware of, and his department merely deals with aliens whereas another deals with paranormal? It wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility given how bureaucratic the alien agency is depicted as being. That could be a fun film. Instead, we have a unoriginal rehash that’s only stab at originality is that Jeff Bridges is for some reason (probably explained in the film, but poorly) an Old West type.
While researching this article (Yes, I do research! Sometimes…) I discovered that R.I.P.D. is actually based off of a comic book of the same name. If you haven’t heard of it, that’s okay, neither had I or apparently anyone else on the internet. The entry for it for the website www.comicvine.com is downright depressing. That doesn’t excuse its plot lines similarity to Men in Black though because it came out a full three years after the hit movie came out in 1997.
In any case, this film is just another example of Hollywood attempting to cut corners in writing talent by recycling the old and not even in a new way. It should come as no surprise, but it’s disappointing still.