This is gonna be a bit of a rant.
I am, I will admit, a nitpicker. But recently I was watching “Conan the Barbarian”, and it struck me how much more work they put into that than Jackson did into Lord of the Rings.
That is, “How much work they put into the pulp, racialistic nonsense of the least intelligent member of the Lovecraft circle, and how very little they put into one of the masterpieces of English literature!”
I realize Conan is bound to come out ahead, because it can’t help but be better than its source while LOTR is doomed to fail, but still. They seemed to be taking the Conan film so much more seriously.
Nobody seems to be willing to invest any time and effort on anything in movies anymore, or take even a tiny risk. All the action movies star the same people they did when I was born–Harrison Ford, Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis–and there don’t seem to be any possible replacements.
All the science fiction movies lately have been euro sf (dystopias with low tech, therefore no need for a budget) or mere eye-candy (high tech, but none of it realistic), and neither has had much in the way of story. As for fantasy, it’s all been children’s stories except Jackson’s LOTR–and that was fairly mediocre. What, I ask, of the great heritage of fantasy fiction? Yes, most of the High stuff is actually pretty bad, but there’s the pulps: Leiber, Smith, maybe another Conan film, Jack Vance’s Dying Earth–heck, I’d be thrilled if Wizards of the Coast would license the first Dragonlance trilogy (Raistlin, anyone? Tasslehoff?!)! But no, more kid books.