A Comparative Analysis between Films and Games

quinn797 argues that Run Lola Run is like a save point in a video game. In the movie, Lola “respawns” three times and the situation changes each time. This is similar to how a save point in a video game works because when you die or restart in a video game, you can change the situation that caused the death/reset. Quinn797 uses the example of the father and secretary in the film. In the first “loop”, the father is revealed to be having an affair with the female secretary who is pregnant. The second loop, the secretary is having a different affair alongside the one she is having with Lola’s father so the baby isn’t his. The final loop is interrupted by a phone call so the full conversation doesn’t happen so the father believes that the baby is his but we don’t fully know. This is similar to the concept of a video game save point/respawn system because in a game you can do multiple loops and change the outcome of the situation.

Reading a book, specifically a choose your own adventure, is also similar to the respawn system in video games and Run Lola Run. In a CYOA books, you read along and you can pick which path you go down. You are able to go back at any point and change your fate because it is as simple as turning back the pages of a book. For example, if you pick a path that ends in your death, you can “respawn”  at the beginning of the book. No matter what happens (barring you ripping pages out of the book) you can always change the path you take. If Run Lola Run was a CYOA book, every time she would die at the climax, she would just flip back to the scene in her apartment then take different path.

But these three media times are very different. In Run Lola Run, Lola doesn’t really change her fate by choice. Her story changes due to external reasons rather than of her own volition. In video games, when you respawn, you can actively change your fate because you learn from each death. With CYOA books, you have the active choice in your fate but it isn’t from learning. It is by process of elimination that you work through the different parts of the book.

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