Paul Verhoeven’s Starship Troopers is held in high regard around these parts. It’s something of an unsung masterpiece, with Verhoeven and writer Ed Neumeier taking a spotty sci-fi pulp and refitting into subversive propaganda. It’s a brazen ode to fascism, which was sort of Verhoeven’s point – it wasn’t until 11 years of a war on terror that shit’s now getting eerily familiar.
But strip away the overtones (as well as the violence, the nudity, the soul) and what are you left with? Toby Jaffe, producer on both the Total Recall and Starship Troopers remakes, is about to tell you. Via Empire:
“The more expensive a film is, the harder it is now to make it that violent,” explains Jaffe, also one of the team behind the Colin Farrell’s Total Recall. “With Recall in particular, we made a conscious choice to keep it tonally closer to something like Minority Report. It gives the studio, and us as producers, the opportunity to reintroduce it in a new way.”
That’s quite the Shyamalan-esque twist: “You thought we were remaking Total Recall, but really we were remaking Minority Report all along!”
I have no doubt the logline for a Troopers reboot will be they’re going back to Robert A. Heinlein’s novel for inspiration. And I also think that, under the right guidance, such a film can be a good time. Even so, perhaps we should all fork over our ticket-buying dollars to fare like Looper or Elysium and remind Hollywood that there’s an audience for original science-fiction. “Brand-recognition” is becoming an exhausting phrase to keep writing.