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This week, the folks over at CineFix released an NES-styled rendition of Brian De Palma's 1983 gangster flick, Scarface. The movie's most iconic scenes have been carefully recreated using the 8-bit aesthetic that Mario taught us to love. But pixilating a drug lord doesn't make him any less violent.
Check it out:
When it was released in 1983, Hollywood wanted nothing to do with Scarface. Critics panned the film for its language and violence, and writers like Kurt Vonnegut and John Irving reportedly walked out of the theater. So, the fact that I just giggled my way through a light-hearted, 8-bit version of the infamous chainsaw scene should probably make me feel guilty. But it doesn't.
I even watched it again just to make sure. It was still funny.
At some point within the last 20 years, Scarface became a cultural phenomenon. Even a pixelated version of Tony Montana is instantly recognizable, and the phrase "Say hello to my little friend" has been etched into the pop culture zeitgeist.
Plus, everything is better when its in 8-bits. Ducks are easier to hunt. Space Piracy is a viable career path. Plumbers and can throw fireballs. And becoming a drug lord in the 1980s seems silly.
These days, an 8-bit drug lord feels antiquated and charming, but this game probably wouldn't have been possible back in 1983. The Atari 5200 had been on the market for less than a year, and the NES wouldn't hit American shores until 1985.
In fact, it wasn't until 2006 that Scarface got an actual video game tie in. Scarface: The World Is Yours was billed as a quasi-sequel to Brian De Palma's film, and it picks up immediately after Tony Montana's death scene. Apparently he doesn't die. Video games always provide a second chance.
The game was popular enough to inspire a sequel, Scarface: Money. Power. Respect, which landed on the PlayStation Portable in 2006. But the Scarface franchise has been silent for the last nine years.
Luckily, CineFix is around to fill the void. If you enjoyed their take on Scarface, don't forget to check out their YouTube channel. The 8-bit versions of Donnie Darko and Pulp Fiction will scratch a similar itch.