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  • The Movies was the first game I had played in years that had me giggling at the computer monitor with ardent glee. I was fascinated by it, and could hardly get going as a player, because I was so perplexed by just how unique it is. In a time where Hollywood is struggling with ideas and music is manufacturing pop idols after pop idols for destitute cover versions, it's great to know the gaming industry comes up trumps with things like this, when it gets constantly criticised for ripping off the film industry.

    There's so much to do. As the producer of your studio you must hire actors, extras, writers, crewmen and directors to film your movies. And builders, janitors and Scientists to help upkeep your studio. The music played throughout very nicely suits whichever decade you are playing in, be it the jazzy 30s or the rockin' 60s. The PA is wonderfully ironic. Early days you here a man frowning upon the movie industry, as he was once on the stage, don't you know. In the 50s it is at it's most hilarious with a Joe McCarthy style anti-communist paranoia. Little touches like this are what give "The Movies" it's genius. But the real genius lies in the film making. I was just sitting there wondering how on earth we had got to this. It's so much fun. And really funny. There are obvious problems, but I'm sure they'll be tended to in the inevitable sequels. The main problem with the game is it'll probably take over your life. I can't remember the last time I went to sleep.
  • Yes you can make your own movies. Yes there are limitations. There are two main aspects of this game.

    1. Making movies 2. Running a movie studio "The Sims" style

    1. Making movies. This part of the game is the best in my opinion. You have total control over the movie making process. You pick your actors and customize their clothes, names, hairstyles, makeup, body type, facial hair, and much more. You then can begin creating your movie. You pick the sets (which range from a beach, city streets, alien planets, westerns, war movies) and then you can customize the sets in case you want to add a coat hanger in the room or a set of chairs. Then you chose from hundreds of scenes to put in your movie (some as small as a person looking to the left, some as big as a western cowboy shootout). you pick which actors you want to be in every scene. you can also change their clothes or look for every scene. there are romantic scenes, fight scenes, funny scenes... you get to chose. when you are finished, you then go to "post production" on your movie. you can add music to your movies (the game provides sample music and you can upload your own as well), you can cut scenes for length (in case a fight scene is lasting too long, you can edit the length of each scene. you can add in sound effects which the game provides. finally you can put your finished movie online or just export it to your computer in windows media viewer format to show your friends. you have 99% total control over the movie.

    2. the studio. i don't use this part too much. you can chose to either build up your studio from the ground up... hiring actors, directors, building sets, trying to win awards in the game, budget your money, etc. for people like me who just want to make movies, there is an option where your studio is already built and you have tons of money and don't have to worry about your actor's mood swings (like in The Sims).

    overall i give it a 9/10. i take only 1 point off because there is no blood (the game might report blood, but the only blood in the game is on a costume where the blood is splattered on the front)
  • Warning: Spoilers
    The Movies was a game that seemed so interesting to me. I've been trying to make machinamas since I could figure out a computer. With this game, Lionhead Studios gives you the power to sit in the directors chair and direct your own films. Hire people to write scripts, or make your own with the Custom Scriptwriter. Make feature-length movies, include your own cast and give them make-overs, names, and put them in your movies.

    CONCEPT - 10/10 - An Awesome concept for a game. It really is a wanna-be director's wet dream, excuse the terminology.

    GRAPHICS - 8/10 - The graphics are semi-par. Not the best, but not the worst. Think The Sims. People are well designed, you can see stubble on male faces and the hair on people's heads have strands instead of being one plop on bushy hair. Movie props are a bit boxy, especially the cars. But, nothing to really complain about.

    INTERACTIVITY - 7/10 - While they do give you the chance to make your own movie, the scenes are mostly compiled of pre-animated sets instead of custom animation, which makes movie creation a little odd and editing especially difficult. But you learn to get used to it and you can make wonderful movies. If all else fails, you could make the most ridiculous movie every compiled of random out-of-place scenes.

    SOUND - 9/10 - Some of the sound is brilliant, while other songs are a little annoying. The radio DJ's that pop up every once in a blue moon are semi-humorous and crack a few funny ones.

    OVERALL - 8/10 - As for the game itself, it's an awesome idea with some minor flaws. I can't wait for the sequel.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I have mixed feelings about this game. On one hand it's an easy, relatively powerful movie-making tool and allows players to make films of many genres, like action, western, war, horror, sci-fi. But it becomes repetitive: once you have made a couple of movies for genre, which is admittedly fun, you'll find yourself using the same scenes over and over again.

    How does the movie-making tool work? First you pick a set among those available, then choose a possible scene, for example one with characters shooting at each other. Then you make secondary choices about the sequence (for example, which props and costumes are used). Finally, you assign actors to the roles. Assemble enough scenes together and you get a movie, which you can even dub.

    Making your first films is entertaining. The limit inherent in this system is its lack of flexibility: once you have used, say, all possible ways in which a monster kills a character (let's say five-six scenes, each one with three-four variations), your horror movies will all start to look identical; when you have tried all possible duels, your westerns will become repetitive, and so on. Sure, you can have rain or fog, different hats and guns, but the scene will be more or less the same, no matter how much you play with editing.

    Still, The Movies and its expansion Stunts & Effects - which introduces new sets, scenes and the Free Cam (to choose camera movements) - are fairly enjoyable for a while.
  • This game is brilliant. In addition to having incredibly deep movie and star-making engines, this game features a historically accurate (and quite funny) satire on American history in the form of radio announcers. I might only like this game because I'm a total film buff, but I've wanted this game since it was first released, and it has barely disappointed me (I wish you could put the camera ANYWHERE you wanted. That would be awesome). Now, it is common knowledge among gamers (especially subscribers of "Electronic Gaming Monthly") that film critic Roger Ebert doesn't see video games as a form of art. I like and respect Ebert, and I'm not so sure whether games are a form of art or not myself, but I'd like to see what he thinks about this game. It's probably as close to art as a game can get.
  • Got this on Christmas day 2005 and the expansion pack, Stunts & Effects, six months later. This came out after years of delays and was well worth the wait. I like many others still play this game today and don't feel it has aged one bit.

    Gameplay-wise it allows you to not just create movies (upon unlocking the custom script-writing office) but you can also take control of actors mood-swings, wages, drinking and food problems in the campaign mode. However you can tweak these options in sandbox mode if you want to just go straight into making movies. A great touch is that every once in a while the game hosts it's own Oscars ceremony (campaign mode only). The only downside is that the developer's website, The Movies Online, is now kaput because of not enough users. Netherless the game is still excellent in single player mode. Escpecially good as it's at a cheap price with it's Stunts & Effects pack. I highly recommend it.
  • It is one of the very few attempts where a game is about the movies industry. The game is very detailed, and it represents the whole movie making process very well. It is very accurate concerning the movies history and the technology used in your movies fits in the era you are. I really enjoyed the idea of a radio station broadcasting the news and giving you information about the movies industry.

    However, it is not so simple, and it might take you some time to play the game without difficulties. You will have to take care of many things at the same time, such as movie making, lot maintenance, taking care of your stars etc. The competition also, during the award ceremonies is tough, and you'll have to be tolerant in order to achieve your goals.

    There is also the choice of making your very own movie. In fact, you must chose carefully scenes that are relevant. You can not chose a standard plot and work on it, however, you can work on ready movies and improve them. You can also add soundtrack and other sounds, as well as subtitles. It is a good attempts that gives the player the chance to make his own movie, but if you think you can create something like "Lord of the Rings" or "Godfather", you'll be a bit disappointed.

    To conclude, it is a great game that everyone should play, especially Sim game and movies lovers.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Excellent game every time I watch anything about Hollywood I remember playing the movies,great Sim,love training my actors % actresses and building new studio lots.very addictive & fun game,the movie making is really good adding your own audio is very fun also and adds a touch of creativity to the game which others don't have.achievements and awards(Oscars) keep you pushing your actors % actresses to improve so you can unlock new items,such as plastic surgery and PR,plop a script or movie into the PR office for it to get publicity and thus boost it's income,you can also plop your characters into the PR shop to boost their popularity.Other features include stunt training if you buy the expansion.this helps your actors become better at doing their own stunts in movies this game will give you plenty of fun for years like it has for me and many others. :)
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This in my opinion has to be one of the greatest computer tools ever made and it is not a "video game" like the idiots who control this website think it is. it is far more than a "game" and with modding tools and such you can make even better movies it may be a "game" in normal mode but in sandbox it's mostly just having fun (especially when you know how to mod)it can be frustrating sometimes but it is very fun and is a great thing to spend time on anyway it's a great program and certainly is one the most creative entertaining fun funny great fantastic and complex programs of all time! 10stars! it's great it's fun and it is not a "video game"
  • I was talking with a friend about another game before when he said, "How can you like it? I'm addicted to it, but I don't like it!" I didn't understand what he was saying until I played "The Movies." Where to begin? This game is one of the most insanely frustrating games I have ever played. It's meant to work as both an RPG simulator game and a movie making tool. I haven't played many RPG sims, but this is a lot of aggravation to go through to make a movie. Let's start with the bugs. Sometimes the actors show up as black blobs instead of actors. Sometimes, when costuming the actors for a scene in the movie, the actors torso will appear as a formless white shape so that you can't see what their costume looks like. Actors will sometime play roles or wear costumes that you didn't assign to them. In the movies, the actors will make annoying mumbling noises unless you insert a microphone and dub over them. The microphone leads to a whole different set of bugs all together.

    When the game starts, you have to build a studio from scratch. You also need to hire employees to write scripts, act in the movies, direct the movies, be extras for the movies, build and maintain buildings, clean the lot, and research movie technology. Directors and actors fall under the same category in the game, but you'll probably use them interchangeably. In fact, you'll probably use all of your employees interchangeably, because only a handful of applicants apply for the jobs on your lot. Making movies stars out as a lengthy process of putting screenwriters to work on a script, casting the script, making sure the script has enough employees attached to it, and then filming on the sets you pay the studios budget to put up. Once the movie is finished, it's reviewed. And then the reviews torment you for using a maintenance man as a star and a screenwriter as a director because you didn't have enough actors and directors to commit to making multiple movies at a time, something you'll need to do if you want to make any money at all in the game.

    You also need to let your employees have fun without getting drunk, and letting them have fun will stretch out the amount of time it takes to make your movies. You also have to build trailers and nurse relationships between the actors to keep them from quitting. Plus, running the studio is often interrupted by an awards ceremony. It's fun at first, but after a while I ended up fast forwarding through the ceremonies to see if my studio won anything. The game starts in the 20's and continues to move through time until it goes into the future and doesn't stop. Also, movie-making processes evolve faster than they did in real life, and there's no way to choose which technology you want to incorporate into which movie, so don't count of producing a film noir in glorious black and white in the 1940's.

    It's possible to attempt making movies without stressing over the strategy element in the game's "sandbox" mode. Unfortunately, options in the sandbox mode must be unlocked by earning certain amounts of money, winning certain awards, garnering good reviews, and babying movie stars in the main game mode. You even have to unlock the ability to write your own "scripts." This process consists of stringing together different animated sequences, ranging from a secretary seducing her boss to a zombie getting stabbed in the head. There are thousands of combinations of animations possible. Still, there aren't enough possibilities. While you get to control certain elements, such as violence level during fight scenes and the raciness of love scenes, it's impossible to control basic elements such as whether an actor is exiting stage left or stage right. Also, each script can be based only around three main actors, and each actor only gets one primary costume. If you want an actor to wear a different costume in certain sequences in the movie, you must change their clothes in each of those individual scenes. The same goes where choosing a custom backdrop for the scenes. And the options for dressing the sets with props are almost impossible to use.

    I've restarted the game twice already. The first time I restarted it was because I did so miserably in the strategy portion of the game that my studio spent a century being multi-millions in debt and I only had three tiny sets to film on. The second time I restarted because my brother accidentally saved over my game in the confusing save screen. After that, I was forced to start earning items I had unlocked all over again.

    There are several other frustrating elements of the game, such as being unable to change simple mistakes, like an actor being in the wrong costume, during filming or post production but only during the screen writing process. Also, in the main game, custom scripts will take more time and money to produce, meaning that making movies the way you want to make them will actually hurt you in the RPG strategy element.

    The game certainly has its moments. And it definitely is addicting. The first week I owned it I lost sleep trying to come up with strategies to save my studio from financial ruin. But it really isn't worth losing sleep over. And while I'm addicted to it, I can't recommend it to others.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Okay, who ever has played The Movies original game and you have not tried it yet. Either borrow it, buy a copy. This is tons much better than the original game.

    You may think it is a brand new game, but the only way you can play it is if you bought the original because it is an expansion pack. It is just giving you more choices to choose from then the original. You can either start in like in the original game, or do a quick start, which has you able to start in 1960, which is when you are able to start with all the effects. Or if you go to sand box, and go over year 1960, you will have more stuff and all the stunts things will be set immediately for you.

    It is a whole lot better. You can have buildings blow up, cars blow up. Heck, you can have people blow up. You can have stunt men and a hospital for the injured. Stunt man or not. You can have movies like Godzilla with the miniature city set. You can have blue screens, or green screens. And tons and tons and tons more for you to choose for.

    This game is a whole lot of fun, you have so much stuff. It is just so cool. The game-play is a lot better. The sets are better. And Heck, the expansion pack is better.

    A whole lot more. So get the game soon. It is definitely worth it.

    Get it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Warning: Spoilers
    'The Movies' is the first really successful movie-making game out there! It makes you feel like you're a big budget studio head. You get to manage your studio and keep it up in the charts by boosting you're prestige, star-power and capital. You're stars have to be kept happy and stress free (and don't be stingy with their salary either!!!). There are many other aspects of the game like the vast amount of sets, costumes and scenes that you can use to create your own 'Epic'. Once a movie is finished the stars have to rehearse it, then it has to be filmed, then the PR has to be boosted and finally it is to be released at a corresponding marketing value to it's PR. The best feature in the game is the 'Advanced Script Writing Office' in which you are able to make your own masterpiece, or quite simply edit an already scripted one. In this script office you can prune the movie down to the finest detail with props, set dressing and extras! The 'Post Production' is where you can add in subtitles, Voice Overs (if you have a microphone), music, sound effects and cut scenes to make your movie ready for 'Hollywood'! With the game, comes the ability to post your movies online and make your own studio page in the online community. Once there, it will be reviewed and given a place in the charts as well as earning you VIRTUAL credits, which is not real money, but allows you to purchase new props, costumes and even sets from the online 'Propshop'! Overall, 'The Movies' game is an exciting strategy game with chances for success in the online competitions. So if you want to become a 'movie-making' legend then buy it today! Star Rating: *****
  • Peter Molyneux, the very same gaming God that brought us Populous, Powermonger, Theme Park & Hospital. Just a shame his more recent games have been poor - average at best. Since starting his own game company (Lionhead), he had released nothing but tat. Just look at games like Fable and Black & White for proof.

    Now don't get me wrong, The Movies is FAR from a terrible game...it just that is's FAR too simplistic. Often I feel like I'm playing a game designed for 10 year olds.

    The basic plot is that you have to run a film studio starting from 1920 right up to 2000. You start off making VERY low budget films using the technology that was around in 1920...which was not much. But as you play, you get to research all sorts of new technology from colour films to CGI and everything in between.

    The game is really 2 games in 1. You get a basic management style game, not too dissimilar from past Pete game like Theme Park. In which you get to place various buildings and hire various staff. The main problem with this part of the game is that it's too much like Theme Park and has a very similar style and set up too...Theme Park was great in 1994, The Movies was released in 2005, and nothing much has changed. So you are really just playing an 11 year old game with new graphics. The 2nd part of the game is the most fun (which is not saying that much). You get to actually "write" film scripts. You do so by first selecting your film genre from 5 types (including Sci-Fi, Horror and Action). But where as this is the best part of the game, it's also the most flawed. again, it's just TOO simplistic. All you do is select certain scenes, then select which "actors" play which parts...and that's about it. It hardly stretches the old grey matter. There are too few scenes to choose from and not much difference between film genres other then different scenery. So you end up making films with the same old scenes over and over and over. As you research new tech, you films do get better and eventually you can even edit them yourself. You can even add your own soundtracks and dialogue too, then upload them to the official The Movies site for all to see and comment on...but as I said before, there are too few scenes to choose from so you do end up with a LOT of repetition, no matter who made the film. There is now a Stunts & Effects add on around...it does not add anything really worth shouting about, and why were stunts and effects not in the game in the first place...other than to try and ween a bit more cash from the paying public?

    The Movies is a average game that has been made FAR to simplistic just to cater for a wider and more casual audience.

    The Movies is a game with great ideas...just not implemented well. Instead of working on poor "add-ons" for the game, get working on an all new The Movies sequel, and this time add some decent gameplay and cater for more than 10 year olds with the intellect of a gnat.

    Maybe one day Mr.Molyneux will once again become the gaming God he once was. Just that NOTHING released by Lionhead recently has even come close to the game he once used to produce.
  • ZachGroom22 June 2006
    the major problem with this game is that it's not the great movie making game that it claims to be. the main goal is to become the richest studio in the world.

    if you are an artistic film maker with a vision, this game is not for you're movie creating abilities. rather, you financial abillities. sure you can edit movie that already have scripts, but you can never create your own story.

    you can however make a short with some movement, and sounds and dialoge, but if your thinking that you can make really cool, profound pictures, this game can't do it.

    and another very real fact of the main stream is carried over to the game. the writers. in the game your writers mean nothing. all they do is sit in a little room and give you gold, and yet like the stars, you can not look at a writers mood, change there salary, or really have any other concers than writing.