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      CommentAuthorZ
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.1)
    Good thing, or bad thing?:
    <a href="http://news.google.com/nwshp?ned=us&ncl=1137099365&hl=en&topic=e">City of Men</a> (follow-up to <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/City_of_God_%28film%29">City of God</a>) .

    What really prompted this thread was someone adding Michael Bay to the '<a href="http://freakangels.com/whitechapel/comments.php?DiscussionID=314&page=9#Item_5">Things that should not exist</a>' thread without any basis or examples or links.

    Found some good reasons to end his existence <a href="http://nymag.com/daily/entertainment/2008/01/michael_bay_is_now_pillaging_o.html">here</a>:
    <blockquote>Not content with pointlessly remaking <a href="http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117979807.html?categoryid=13&cs=1"><em>The Birds</em>, [..] and <em>Friday the 13th</em></a>, Michael Bay’s grave-robbing Platinum Dunes now turns its relentless remake rampage on a franchise where it actually matters who’s playing the killer by launching a new franchise based on Wes Craven’s 1984 A Nightmare on Elm Street. Variety seems to suggest that Robert Englund will not return as Freddy Krueger. Boy, they'll regret that decision when they wake up dead. </blockquote>
    Without any tantrums about childhood-stealing Hollywood remakes, is there any room for discussion as to whether we need these sequels and remakes or not?

    <em>City of God</em> was a great movie, but I'm not sure how you follow something like that. The remake of <em>Psycho</em> was miserable (then again, Naomi Watts is far and away a better actress than Anne Heche).

    Thoughts?

    - Z
  1.  (1202.2)
    Well all remakes are not the same,

    The higher budget remake of an older film, sometimes adapted to a new demographic then the original film was intended.
    The shot for shot remake, done almost like a film school experiment.
    The cultural translation, sometimes to get rid of subtitles sometimes just to get rid of various British accents.

    Sometimes a film is all three. It is mostly about avoiding risk I think, making a film that has been "proven" to work already. I do like a few remakes (the American Ring is excellent), but is hard for me to justify them artistically.

    Sequels, first need to be distinguished from movies where a follow up is intended - trilogies ect. In all accuracy a sequel is only a film never intended when the first film is released. I am a bit more open here, as some truly great sequels have been made, and as superhero fan I can hardly dismiss the value in a great story using existing material. The ideal is that the new film builds upon ideas in play in the first. And when it comes to corporate owned properties, well why not.
  2.  (1202.3)
    There's a Hellraiser remake on the cards as well, I imagine they'll fail to get Doug Bradley to play Pinhead. I can't see Nightmare on Elm Street faring all that well without Robert Englund and I can't see Hellraiser faring well without Bradley (Englund and Doug Bradley are tied for most times they've portrayed the same character in a movie).

    Given that Michael Bey managed to fuck up remaking a children's cartoon I'm mostly awaiting this with fatalistic despair.

    I'm less worried by a Friday 13th reboot since that particular franchise has never been as solidly tied together in the first place.

    Finally Rob Zombie's remake of Halloween was pretty good and did something different with the character whilst still ticking all the boxes. Remakes aren't always a bad thing.
  3.  (1202.4)
    the italian job remake was pisspoor.

    i actually enjoyed the remake/adaptation of the ladykillers, the original is still fantastic though...



    the thing about remakes i thikn though, is that people tend to choose already fantastic films to remake, i'd like to see somebody pick a really bad film and make it better. like films with good concepts that never really made it.
    • CommentAuthorTim Murr
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.5)
    <blockquote>the thing about remakes i thikn though, is that people tend to choose already fantastic films to remake, i'd like to see somebody pick a really bad film and make it better. like films with good concepts that never really made it.

    Yea, I think John Carpenter's The Thing is a good example of that. And Herzog's Nosferatu always gives me a grin.
    I don't really get ticked off over remakes, I mean, aren't you glad Nolan remade Batman?
    • CommentAuthorstarfire
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.6)
    <olivertwisted>
    im assuming you're referring to Transformers as the michael bay movie in question. As a fan of the cartoon as well i thought he did a pretty good job of taking something nostalgic and giving it a modern twist. also keep in mind it was designed to be a blockbuster, to make money, which it did. also, the remake of Halloween was so disappointing. most horror movies are disappointing, remakes or otherwise.
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      CommentAuthorCOMTE
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.7)
    I think there's a justification for doing remakes IF, AND ONLY IF the original was not successful or particularly noteworthy OR the production team intends to either be MORE faithful to the source material (if there is such) or has a truly original take that is significantly different from the original. People forget for example, that the Bogart "Maltese Falcon" was the third version of Hammett's novel put to film - mainly because nobody remembers the first two, and probably didn't back in 1941 either.

    So, IMO Carpenter's remake of "The Thing" was noteworthy, because it attempted a more literal interpretation of the original; unlike the most recent remake of another Matheson piece, "I Am Legend", which really didn't bring anything new or significant to the table, aside from using the original title.

    "Solaris" was a worthy, albeit (IMO) unsuccessful attempt to remake Tarkovsky's original, which frankly I don't particularly care for in the first place (I'm not much of a fan of Russian literature in general; it's just generally toooooooooo slowly paced for my taste), because it really did try to reframe the story in a way that would make a little more sense to an American audience.

    And don't even get me started on "The Italian Job" remake - ugh! Charlie would have given Arthur as much explosive as he needed to "blow [more than] the bloody doors off!" that one.

    In general, the idea of remaking a film that was previously successful, with already-proven audience appeal, just seems both lazy and greedy, IMO, and I can't think of a single example where the remake surpassed the original.
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      CommentAuthorEgon
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008 edited
     (1202.8)
    I almost had a tantrum defending Hollywood remakes in the Akira thread yesterday. :\

    But Patton Oswalt put it best re: the recent Chipmunks movie.

    "This Friday, ALVIN AND THE CHIMPMUNKS opens at theaters everywhere. And already hipster assholes are whining about how "their childhoods are being raped" and "how mercenary can Hollywood be"? ALVIN AND THE CHIMPMUNKS is a blatant, soulless, money-grab -- the only reason it even got MADE was because there was an family-movie-shaped-hole in the release schedule.

    But for people to whine and bitch about the movie runing their childhoods is even more disgusting. The only way the ALVIN AND THE CHIMPMUNKS movie is ruining your childhood is if you're 70 years old, or retarded. In fact, if you liked Alvin and the Chimpmunks to BEGIN with, maybe you need your childhood raped."
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      CommentAuthorJoe Paoli
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.9)
    Without sequels, there'd be no Bride of Frankenstein, Godfather II, or Aliens.

    Without remakes, Carpenter'd have no Thing nor would Cronenburg be Fly.

    Let the idiots hack away, occasionally we get genius.

    I'll also subject myself to ridicule by saying I enjoyed The Italian Job remake. It had a lot less soul than the original, but was still a competent heist film. There are things that don't translate to the next generation, and remakes can speak to them in ways the original can't. They may even serve to get them to see the original, which probably would never have happened otherwise.
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      CommentAuthorAlexis
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.10)
    Remember the remake of "The Island of Doctor Monroe" with Brando in it. It's bad. Really bad. So bad I start to like it again. It is to Brando what "Xanadu" is to Gene Kelley. But yeah, sometimes the remake or sequel is better. The question is, should we remake the bad movies and try to make them good, or remake the good movies our of nostalgia?
    • CommentAuthortmofee
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.11)
    I've seen City of Men. The show, I mean. It wasn't bad. It's a TV show, I feel it's more of a companion piece. Not as full on as City of God. It's much lighter than the movie..
    • CommentAuthorMaC
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.12)
    Remakes have long since stopped even having a remote chance of being good. Why people still hold out hope while admitting that just about every remake/reimagining in recent times has been awful is a little beyond me.

    What it boils down to, is that 90% of remakes ARE blatant cash grabs with directors from Spice Girls music videos tossed on them and no-name cast members. They seem to be less about trying to make a good movie and more about creating low-investment but high-return buffers to make the profits better. The studios aren't even trying anymore.

    The remakes I can honestly say I've enjoyed?

    The Thing - John Carpenter. The Fly - David Cronenburg. The Departed - Martin Scorcese.

    What do they have in common? Directors of talent, good casting? What do 90% of all remakes nowadays not have? Any of those things.
    • CommentAuthortmofee
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.13)
    I didn't like the remakes of Psycho or The Omen. Both bored me. The only good bit in the new Omen movie was the hospital scene.
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      CommentAuthorExploder
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.14)
    It's a rare remake that actually does something interesting. I think generally speaking the only time a remake is better than the original or at least approaches the idea of the original from a different aspect is after some statute of limitations has been surpassed. Remaking a nineteen fifties film in the eighties or nineties has just enough time between original and remake to allow a talented person (or persons) to look at the same ideas from a new, modern angle. That's pretty much the only time that remakes work. As far as turning something into an American film... I'd much rather see a film in the context of the culture in which it was created. It's way, way more interesting to see something completely foreign than something watered down for American appetites.

    Also, why bother with a remake when you can make a sequel? I know that the remake will probably do better at the box office just because it doesn't have the taint of serialisation, but still. You might as well do a sequel, especially if the last sequel (or original) was released within thirty years of the new one. That's the whole point of sequels; they explore similar themes from new points of view. At least, that's the idea. There's also the reasoning that killing two more Autobots will grab an extra hundred million dollars.

    You could also just forgo the entire sequel/remake idea and just come up with an entire new movie. Look at Doomsday - It's Neil Marshall doing his version of a Mad Max style post-apocalypse, and it looks like a whole lot of fun. Way more fun than if he'd just remade Mad Max or tried to sell the world on a Thunderdome sequel.
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      CommentAuthorAlexis
    • CommentTimeFeb 28th 2008
     (1202.15)
    Also, 90% of all art is bad. I think this is true of movies, TV, writing, comics, paintings, photos, everything. your odds aren't good.
  4.  (1202.16)
    Im with offtandiscord. I want to see horrible, horrible movies remade well.
  5.  (1202.17)
    @starfire

    I was indeed talking about Transformers. Mostly I just didn't like the way the damn robots looked or the way in which the action sequences were directed. It certainly made great bucket loads of cash which as you say was pretty much what it was designed to do. I've no problem with things getting redone from scratch, indeed I'd far rather that a remake took some liberties and went in a new direction with the original material. I enjoy my horror though, a genre that is filled with remakes, sequels and thinly veiled 'homages'. I genuinely thought Halloween was an interesting way to make a slasher flick that referenced the original without being slavish. But then I'm a zombie movie fan and by my reckoning I've sat through somewhere around forty subtle variations on either Night of the Living Dead or Zombie Flesh Eaters with every evidence of enjoyment.

    It's interesting to compare and contrast television franchises with movies. I'm not a big Star Trek fan but managing to produce seven seasons each of The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine and Voyager definitely impresses me. That's a huge amount of material. Obviously you can argue that Star Trek fans as a group are not the most discerning viewers but they managed to notice that Enterprise was unwatchable and turn it off. Obviously Next Generation was itself a remake.

    But I think the pillaging of the past to create the films and TV shows of the future is getting worse. Paul Anderson of Aliens Vs Predator infamy, is currently remaking Deathrace 2000, a classic bit of sci-fi nonsense that ought to be pretty straightforward to update for modern eyes. The most viewed TV pilot in ages in the US was a remake of Knightrider, the hottest TV sci-fi property in the UK is Doctor Who. I'm just guessing but I reckon the biggest grossing movie of the year might just be The Dark Knight.

    It ain't necessarily a problem but I think pop culture could do with something new to cannibalise at some point. If we don't sooner or later someone is going to consider making Alien Vs Predator 3 and I don't think that's something anyone wants to have to live through.
    • CommentAuthorstarfire
    • CommentTimeFeb 29th 2008
     (1202.18)
    @olivertwisted

    it was supposed to be big, have explosions and make you remember how cool it was to be a kid. i'm afraid we have to agree to disagree on that, i liked Transformers. And i hated Halloween. but like i said not many so called horror movies are that good anyway. i will agree with you on the fact that its time to stop rehashing movies that have been made 2 and 3 times and still suck.i am looking forward to dark knight, i love Batman( the comic book) and the last movie. also Christian Bale doesnt hurt.The graphic novel of Dark Knight Returns was one of the reasons i started collecting in the first place. and i dont think ANYONE want more alien vs. predator.
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      CommentAuthorroque
    • CommentTimeFeb 29th 2008
     (1202.19)
    I'm usually not big on remakes, but I'm praying for someone to remake the Silent Hill movie, going back to the source material. I don't care that it only came out two years ago.
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      CommentAuthortedcroland
    • CommentTimeFeb 29th 2008
     (1202.20)
    I'm usually not big on remakes, but I'm praying for someone to remake the Silent Hill movie, going back to the source material. I don't care that it only came out two years ago.


    Hulk.