Formula for success

We watched the Indiana Jones trilogy over the weekend — well, sort of. Everyone voted to skip ahead to Last Crusade after about 50 minutes of Temple of Doom. (We watched it long enough to see the movie’s one amusing moment — Indy groping a statue instead of Kate Capshaw — before deciding we’d be better off pretending that chapter of the series never happened.)

Anyway, in the course of our viewing I finally realized why video games are still a ways behind film as “art.” The answer is so simple I can’t believe I hadn’t figured it already: Video games lack Wilhelm Screams. That classic high-pitched yowl, injected randomly into each and every one of our nation’s murder simulators, would go a long way toward legitimizing the medium. This is truth.

18 thoughts on “Formula for success

  1. I’d ask for an example of this “Wilhelm Scream,” But I’m pretty sure I’d just get rick-rolled.

  2. Oh goodness, I disagree with your Temple of Doom hatin’ so, so hard like adamantium. And Temple of Doom is the single most influential movie for videogames, too!! (Sorta!)

    I think I heard somewhere that Golden Axe uses a David Caruso scream…

  3. And Temple of Doom is the single most influential movie for videogames, too!!

    So that’s why video games are so far behind movies as art! I mean, you’ve got the minecart sequence, the stupid magical stones plot, even the turn towards ‘dark’, ‘dramatic’ and ‘extreme’.

  4. So let me get this straight….You watched Raiders of the Lost Ark, Then Temple of Doom, and then Last Crusade Right?

    Not Temple of Doom, Skipped Raiders and then Crusade? If so then that is so wrong.

    I always like Temple of Doom just as much as the other two since the other two characters with Indy had as much screentime as Indy and weren’t your typical sidekicks.

  5. I just happen to be reviewing a game right now, Summer Sports for the Wii, that allows players to taunt each other with Wilhelm screams sent through the Wiimote speaker.

  6. Also, who in their right minds watches Temple of Doom before Raiders? Yeah, I know, chronology… but it’s too jarring to see beefy post-“Return of the Jedi” Harrison Ford drop several years from his face and 30 pounds of muscle from his frame.

  7. Actually, hearing it again, I’m not sure the Wilhelm and the one used in Summer Sports are the same. It’s definitely a public-domain scream effect, one that is used in a lot of ridiculous Halloween decorations, but I don’t know if it has a name.

    I guess I have a new project!

  8. More platformers should include the Goofy Holler when you fall off a ledge.

    Heck, it might improve the sound of Toad’s voice for future Mario platformers.

  9. I recently (2 years ago) also decided to watch the Indiana Jones trilogy. I didn’t even finish Raiders of the Lost Ark. It completely did not hold up for me at all. I was extremely bored by the one hour mark and decided to do something else. I’m kind of sad it didn’t have staying power for me. Actually, I should at least try the Last Crusade again since I always liked that one the best, but I’m afraid of wounding my nostalgia further.

  10. Ah, the Wilhelm Scream, the very thought of it makes me smile with the image of a thousand Storm Troopers all falling into a great crevice, wailing that high-pitch wail. Joy.

  11. “Yes, but they have Yourraaaghs. See Starcraft’s Firebat.”

    See, I always called that the Dark Forces scream, because there was nothing quite as amusing to an eleven-year-old boy as turning on the invincibility and standing on top of mines.

  12. Was never much of a fan of Temple. Kingdom of the Crystal Skull will hopefully make it a “true” trilogy. ;)

  13. Bah, Temple of Doom is great entertainment. It may not be on the technical level of the other Indy films, but it’s still fun when taken by itself.

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