I kind of don’t get it. I’ve watched much of the film embedded below, and it looks to me mostly like director John Hillcoat took cinematics from the first half of Red Dead Redemption and mashed them up with a couple of nice in-game camera angles and gets a directing credit for “A film made from” the game. I must be missing something here, but even the lamest World of Warcraft machinima I’ve seen appears to have more of an original spark than this. Shouldn’t the people who made these cinematics be getting the credit for the movie?

Also, weird nitpick – having finished the game it’s unsettling to see John Marston walk into a door in Fort Mercer and end up in the basement of the mansion in Tumbleweed. I know that’s lame, but it’s the same experience New Yorkers or Los Angelenos get when watching a movie set in their town take serious liberties with the geography.

This originally aired as a half hour paid programming block on Fox this weekend. I wish it was a little more original; it would have been fun if Rockstar had given Hillcoat their engine and their voice actors and let him make a little side story set in the world of John Marston – maybe a Landon Ricketts short! – instead of a condensed adaptation of the game’s first half.

By the way, I’ve been considering writing a critique of the game as story. Not as game – Alex is working on that – but as a piece of storytelling. I think it’s one of the only video games ever made worth deeper thought on that front. Would anyone be interested in reading that?