Edgar Allan Poe chasing a serial killer? Abraham Lincoln hunting vampires? Sure, why not? This is Hollywood, where nothing is sacred, least of all real historical fact. In today’s Roundtable, we make our own suggestions for ways that Hollywood can bastardize history for our populist blockbuster entertainment.
The year is 1898. Marie Curie and her husband Pierre have just discovered radium. A few years later, Pierre is killed by a horse and carriage. To cope with her loss, the Nobel Prize winner buries herself in her work. However, the prolonged exposure to radioactive materials begins to physically alter the young woman into something… monstrous. Her height, weight and mass rapidly increase, her skin turns to scales, and dorsal fins even sprout from her spine. She opens her mouth and spits an atomic ray of fire that singes the tip of the tail, now curled around from her backside. Alas, Marie Curie is no more. Look out, Tokyo, here comes ‘Curzilla: Queen of the Monsters’.
‘Wilford Brimley: Oatmeal Assassin’ – Diabeetus led to an early retirement from the field of international murder-for-hire, according to documents found in the actor’s desk. A new documentary is being created, using the plane tickets and a list of names of the men, women and children who all died under the most unusual of circumstances: drowning in their oatmeal. Is Brimley responsible for these bizarre occurrences, or is his presence more an omen, the names a series of souls haunting the legendary man? The Boston Red Sox guest star as experts in the field of choking.
I’ve always wanted to do an adventure movie featuring Howard Hughes as an Indiana Jones/Tony Stark kind of character, the idea being that the entire time he was thought to be reclusive and hiding out in Vegas hotels or relieving himself in milk bottles while watching ‘Ice Station Zebra’, Hughes was actually flying around the globe in the Spruce Goose, romancing women, smuggling artifacts from remote jungle harbors, and leading a life of adventure and danger. I still think it could be a really fun movie or historical fiction novel.
The JFK assassination is still pretty strange, so I think the President’s life could be twisted in a fun way as ‘JFK: Time Traveler’. Mr. President funds a secret military program that makes time travel possible. His one condition is that he is the only man who can be sent through time. When the future reveals the world destroyed by this powerful ability, he goes back and shoots himself from the grassy knoll, putting an end to the program before it ever starts. Directed by Duncan Jones and starring that guy from ‘My Week with Marilyn’ (simply because he’s the only actor who somewhat looks like JFK).
‘George Washington Carver: Chupacabra Slayer!’ – When an unruly Chupacabra is caught eating all of his treasured crops, including his beloved peanuts, legendary agricultural scientist George Washington Carver (Academy Award winner Morgan Freeman) gets to work. He may be famous for pioneering over three hundred uses for peanuts, but this summer he’ll pioneer over three hundred ways to kick ass! Armed with only his wits, grace, and an endless arsenal of experimental peanut powered weaponry, he’s going to hunt down the elusive beast and carve it a new one.
We’ve seen plenty of stories about that other George Washington, but here’s a film about the one who really matters. You know, the one with the bigger pair of nuts. Action packed and educational, you definitely don’t want to miss ‘George Washington Carver: Chupacabra Slayer!’ – or just ‘Carver!’ for short. Better yet, ‘CRVR!’ for easier Twitter use. We don’t need no stinking vowels. You know what? Screw the letters completely; it’s just ‘!’. When you see your friends after the flick, and they ask you what movie you saw, just scream at them! They’ll know. They’ll know.
M. Enois Duarte
On one late, stormy night, the genius Stephen Hawking sits at his desk grading students papers, when he suddenly hears the sound of a large machine inexplicably turned on. Rushing to investigate, the theoretical physicist discovers that one of his students has been secretly working on a time machine, and the thing has been mysteriously activated. Moving in for a closer look, as wild blue lights of electrical currents circle around a center in the shape of an empty black hole, Hawking is helplessly sucked in by its gravitational pull and disappears.
When he awakes, he quickly surmises his student’s stupid science experiment has transported the world’s smartest man to the 23rd Century! It’s a world where nations still fail to find peace and now use enormous, 30-story machines to fight their battles, piloted by a single soldier inside. Slowly realizing he has somehow acquired a natural talent for working with machines, Stephen agrees to help the government being invaded by a Fascist regime, called Halliburton Fox Procter Gamble, trying to steal the country’s supply of drinkable water. They build for him a machine that meets Stephen’s symbiotic needs, and they called it Mecha-Hawking!
This is ‘Stephen Hawking in the 23rd Century’, directed by Steven Spielberg from a script by James Cameron & J.J. Abrams. Produced by Peter Jackson and Jerry Bruckheimer with music by John Williams. Micheal Bay sits on the sidelines of the production, wishing he’d come up with it first.
We all thought it was clever when the creators of the ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ named their goofy comic book characters after famous Renaissance artists. However, what you may not have realized is that the comic and resulting cartoon series were actually based on little-known, actual historical fact. No, fair enough, none of these brilliant men were mutant turtles, nor were they all teenagers at the same time. (Some people may even tell you that one died an elderly man before two of the others were even born, but pish-posh to that.) Yet buried in the secret annals of history is the fact that they were indeed ninjas!
In the year 1493, word of Christopher Columbus’ discovery of the New World has just started filtering back to the Old World. Europe is abuzz with excitement – except in the halls of the Vatican, where recently-christened Pope Alexander VI is informed by his cabal of holy advisors that they’ve known about this mysterious continent for centuries, and it harbors a terrible secret. Nearly a millennia and a half earlier, in an epic battle that has been deliberately purged from the official historical record, Jesus narrowly saved the world from the Antichrist, ultimately banishing his enemy to the land across the ocean. But now the Devil’s razor-fanged son Shredder has hitched a ride back to Europe on one of Columbus’ ships!
The Pope quickly calls back to duty the retired master assassin Donatello (nicknamed “Splinter” for his ability to shatter an opponent’s bones with the slightest touch), who had faked his own death a few decades earlier and now lives in seclusion. Far too old now to face the Antichrist on his own, Splinter recruits a crack squad of the greatest warriors in the land (all posing, as he had, in secret identities as artists) and trains them in the martial arts techniques that he had studied in the Orient.
Can the trio of Michelangelo, Raphael and Leonardo defeat the greatest supernatural evil the world has ever known – and, perhaps, perfect a recipe for scrumptious pizza while they’re at it? Find out this summer in ‘Renaissance Ninja Artist Assassins: Redemption’ (the “Redemption” part tacked onto the title for no reason at the last second by the American distributor) – featuring the hit single “Moanin’ Lisa” by Li’l Titian.
Be honest; you’d buy tickets to all of these, wouldn’t you? If you’ve got better ideas for Hollywood revisionism, give us your pitch in the Comments.