In the year 2000, I graduated from film school with two screenplays and a passion for movies. I watched John Woo's Hard Boiled or Face/Off every week, and dreamed in Anime. I worshiped Neon Genesis Evangelion, which was still fairly new to video. I consumed James Cameron and even Jan de Bont. The four years I'd spent in college had been filled with brilliant action movies. And I wanted to write and someday direct a film worthy of the great action directors who had come before me. It was a lofty goal, of course, but all dreams should start big. I was in love with Movies, and who wouldn't be in 2000?Three years later, I've just gotten out of T3, and I've realized why I'm so sad when I'm at the video store: The thing that's killing my passion is the very source itself. Terminator 3 is an awful movie. There's no love or drive or reason for it to exist. There's no poetry. And the script is awful. Just like Matrix Reloaded. Or X2. Or Star Wars II. Or any of the Movies I've looked forward to in the last 3 years.
Now, before I get lectured or emailed -- you have to know that I'm not an independent film fan. I like Action Movies. And they used to be good. It's possible that I'm the one that's changing, but I really believe that action movies used to be amazing. What moment in Windtalkers can compare with Castor Troy spitting in his own face in fury and despair? What single second of T3 (more expensive than T2 -- and, I know, not directed by Cameron) can match the joy of John Conner telling the Terminator to stand on one foot? Yeah, it's neat that Neo can fly. But what ghost-bad-guy-twin-albino moment can hold a candle to Agent Smith fighting Neo in the subway circa 1999? What the hell happened to all the film directors? Was LA sprayed with some kind of lazy haze?
I'm pissed off. But I'm not going to complain anymore. I've got my copy of Final Draft again. And I'm going to fix this. Whether a rewrite of Revelation, Actioneers, or an entirely new action film, I'm going to take it upon myself to have the best possible screenplay when I come back to LA. To hell with T3. It sucked. And we're all being dulled by mediocrity.