The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of Industry Remakes

I’m sure that I am not the only one who is tired, so very tired of all the remakes being cranked out by Hollywood. I was looking over upcoming films, as I sometimes do, and to my disgust almost all of the major ones are remakes.

Why doesn’t Hollywood want to pay for new ideas? I know that previously done concepts and ideas show tried, true and lucrative for the film industry but come on; how much stuff can you recycle before there is absolutely nothing creative left? And when did it become standard practice to remake remakes. Just because you wait forty years to redo a film, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s still the same story.

I think the biggest problem here is the lack of good original storytelling. What happened to telling a compelling story, to putting together words and ideas that have substance? Has Hollywood really become this lazy? Back in the days when the industry was basically an assembly line of cookie-cutter movies, cast with all the same actors and produced by one of the five major studios, the new up and comings brought about a much needed cinematic revolution. I think we are in dire need of this once again.

I understand that the film industry has been losing money and they are afraid to take risk on new projects as opposed to spending the funds on something they are more confident will produce revenue, but is it really necessary to sacrifice quality and creativity for money? Doesn’t that defeat the entire purpose of making a film? Films are supposed to be a visual expression of art; a story told through moving pictures. With that being said, it seems to me that the art of storytelling is dying, or rather is being slowly murdered with each release of a shoddy and unapologetically bastardized remade film.

Don’t get me wrong I am not opposed to the occasional reboot; some things need to be done over because they were so poorly done the first time. We’ve all seen those movies that could’ve been great if they hadn’t of sucked. Those are the ones I mean, films like Spiderman.  The first Spiderman was good for what it was, when it was but they clearly dropped the ball on that one. There were visible production mistakes, dialogue errors and editing faux pas. Let’s hope they do a little better this time. I can say, and I’m sure everyone would agree, that the reboot of Batman was one of the greatest treats ever, the same for Star Trek. But these successes are too few and far between.

Technological advancements have definitely helped turn some old classics into still classics that are now visually stunning. That is only possible though, when the story remains or is altered into a good story. Special effects don’t really mean anything if you have a shitty story. The reason the King Kong remake was a good one was, not only because of its visual appeal but because it still had a good story. The characters had depth and there was an emotional attachment. I am Legend would fall into that same category, as well as The Wolfman. Then on the other hand you have remakes that should have never been, like Psycho for instance, which was simply terrible. And that’s quite mind-boggling. How do you take a great classic film and make it terrible. Who does that?

I don’t want to see any more remakes of Annie, which I hear is being done, and will star Willow Smith. Annie is one of the best musicals ever made and it has already been remade-and it was terrible, by the way. That’s a little girl with a heap of talent and potential so why aren’t they writing something new for her? There is so much talent out there that isn’t being used to its potential because there is a lack of good new material.

There are good stories out there, new ones. I don’t think they are looking as hard as they should be for them. They seem to be quite content reprocessing stuff that doesn’t need to be reprocessed. What’s wrong with leaving classics as they are? I know some of them weren’t of the greatest production quality but they had good stories and that meant more. The Clash of the Titans remake was the worst thing I’ve ever seen. I watched it twice just to be sure I was giving it a fair shot and I will never be able to get those hours of my life back. I would rather watch the original with the sub-par acting and horrific effects than sit through something as poorly executed and written as the remake. My head hurts just thinking about it.

To add injury to insult, it is rumored that Hollywood has in production remakes of Carrie (why), Point Break (why), The Neverending Story (why) and Scarface (why). These films are all classics in their own right (one of which is already a remake). What exactly would be the purpose in remaking them, especially when there is no guarantee that they won’t be poorly done.

I just want to say that there is something to be said for originality and creativity. When a good writer gets to collaborate with a good director and some great actors magic can be made and that by its self will get people in theater seats. The list of good original films is long and wonderful but unfortunately the list of awful films is even longer. We, as filmmakers, directors, producers and writers can make it shorter by comparison if we start now.  Not a suggestion, a plea for results.


4 responses to “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of Industry Remakes

  1. “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of Remakes”……………

    Jeremy Renner as Blondie

    Alan Rickman as Sentenza / Angel Eyes

    Danny Trejo as Tuco

  2. I hope you are writing some fresh new material, and in fact I know you are. I can’t wait to take a trip to the set!

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