So I got this email from Dan over at Top 10 Films, asking if I’d like to be involved in a Blog-a-thon he was organizing. It was based on the concept of Houdini’s Magic Ticket, which was a central plot conceit in the Arnold Schwarzenegger film The Last Action Hero: the question is this – if you could go into any film you wanted, and/or be any character you wanted, which would it be? Simple enough, you ask, but the problem is that there’s almost too much choice to make a single decision on. How many thousands of films, hundreds of thousands of characters, in all the films released worldwide in a given year, have the potential to be a film you’d enjoy spending time in? You could co-pilot the Millennium Falcon with Han Solo, fighting the TIE fighters in Star Wars. Or you could join Brad Pitt’s Basterds for a tilt at knocking off Hitler. Maybe you wouldn’t mind spending a bit of time traipsing through Austria with Maria and those annoyingly cheery von Trapp children. Or, if you’re a slightly less straightforward person, you might enjoy spending some time in a Tim Burton film, perhaps, or maybe – God forbid – inside a David Lynch flick. The possibilities are, indeed, endless.
So where would I go in film, if I could? The doorway to another world, an inherent ingredient in cinema, is now open to me, allowing me the possibility of endless permutations – part of me thinks James Bond’s world might be cool, while another part of me thinks a trip to the Federation in a reborn Star Trek might be cooler. If I was a sadist I might try traipsing across the desert of Arabia with Lawrence, or perhaps accompanying Brendan Fraser on his hunt for the Mummy. Oh, so many choices. So many to choose from, and I can’t make up my mind.
I know what my wife would choose. She’d want to be the female lead in The Notebook, although perhaps without the Alzheimer’s. It’s easy for her. Romantic empowerment aside, I’d find it tough to agree to go along with the schmaltz. No, I think I’d prefer something a little more, well, exciting. I know, I know, going into an action film, much like the young lad from Last Action Hero, is fraught with bullet-ridden danger, but c’mon, who wouldn’t like to help John McLane kick ass in Die Hard? So my choice, being an action-loving male that I am, would fall towards a film of the more blustery nature.
If I had a single film to pick from, of all the films I’ve seen, I think I’d choose to go into The Matrix: I’d be Neo. Cool dress sense, hot girlfriend, amazing powers and the ability to do anything I want, makes for a heady, almost dizzying expectation. Yes, I think The Matrix would be one cool film to be in. Sure, my “reality” would be all grunge-living and running from giant killer robots, but the upside is that I would have to sleep with Carrie-Ann Moss, so excuse me fellas while I stock up on condoms.
Part of the Magic Ticket Blog-a-thon we have on offer here today includes a series of 8 questions, designed to get the fantasy juices flowing, I guess, so I’ll do my best to come up with some adequately amusing responses. Ticket at the ready, here we go:
1 – What Character would you most like to be sat next to on a plane?
Nothing makes a flight more enjoyable (other than the booze served by the hostesses) than a good conversation with somebody, so I guess if I had my choice it’d be somebody with intelligence, wit and the ability to keep filling up the silence. Therefore, my choice would be Kermit The Frog.
2 – What character would you most want to enjoy a passionate romance with?
For most of my teenage years, I was in love with Jennifer Connelly in Labyrinth, so I could put my hand on my heart and say, without word of a lie, that I’d like to get all romantic with her character from that film.
3 – If you were a cop, who would you want as a partner?
Bruce Willis. Some might say Martin Riggs as played by Mel Gibson, but I don’t think I wanna stake my life on that man at all…
4 – What animated feature would you love to walk around in?
Tough one, real tough. The animation fan in me would love to check out the work in Pinocchio or Cinderella for realsies, but I think for sheer entertainment it’d have to be the Disney version of Tarzan. As far as CGI animation goes, I’d have to go for any of the Toy Story films, because hanging out with Woody, Buzz and the gang would be a real hoot.
5 – What adventure/mission based on Earth or Fantasy would you most like to go on?
It’d be easy to say Lord Of The Rings here, because that trilogy was so frickin’ awesome and massive that it almost transcends cinema itself. Trouble is, if everyone had access to a magic ticket, I think Middle Earth might be a bit crowded with rubberneckers and sightseers traipsing through the nice green grass of Hobbiton. My pick, and this is slightly out of left-field, would be to take on the journey of The Last Starfighter (you know, the one where Alex plays computer games as a recruitment test for killing alien villains in a far off galaxy, before actually deciding to stay and live in that far off galaxy) and become a universally recognized hero. T’was my favorite film as a kid, and I still think it’s an awesome story.
6 – What movie gadget would to you love to try out or steal?
The TARDIS. (Purists may argue, but it did feature in 2 cinema-screened feature films back in the 60’s, so it could be classed as a “movie gadget”…)
7 – What film’s plot would you alter, and how would you do it?
Now THIS is a tough one. It’s a completely subjective argument to say how I’d modify a film’s story, because as soon as you alter the story, it’s not that film. If I had to, I’d probably choose to alter a film like Snakes On A Plane, and have the snakes win, or something. There’s films that could be improved with some slight tinkering, a change of cast or something, but I’m not quite sure which film I’d alter to such a degree.
8 – Which film would you most want to be transported into, simply to be part of that world?
I’ve already said The Matrix, but if I had a second go (because this is fantasy, not reality, and in my fantasy I’d have more than one chance to go into a film) it would dead set be one of either Starship Troopers or Moulin Rouge. I love both those films, and I think I’d make both an awesome bug killer and pantomime pop-song singer harlot.
For more on this Blog-A-Thon, visit Dan’s magnificent page linking them all up, right here!!