The remake is kinda sorta the bane of my existence.
By kinda sorta, I mean that I don’t really like them, but I pay them no mind, really, until someone decides to remake a favorite film of mine. I’m not sure what’s inspiring all the remakes.
There’s an appropriate little anecdote about my feeling on remakes. As I’ve undoubtedly mentioned before, I worked for a Blockbuster for almost two years as a manager. A gaggle of teenage girls wandered in, looking for scary movies to watch with their boyfriends on a weekend night and approached the counter with some questions.
Teen Girl #1: Do you have House of Wax?
Me: Which version? You want the one with Elisha Cuthbert, right?
Teen Girl #2: …Yeah, that one. There’s more than one?
Me: Uh huh.
Teen Girl #1: What about The Texas Chainsaw Massacre?
Me: The one with Jessica Biel?
Teen Girl #2: Yup…is there more than one?
Me: Oh, yeah. Made in the late ’70’s.
Teen Girls: Ewwww.
The teenage girls sauntered off and reapproached their counter with their movies in hand. They talked animatedly about how excited they were, and one struck up a conversation with me about the “other” movies.
Teen Girl #1: So, have you seen the other movies of these?
Me: Yeah, I liked them a lot, especially the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
Teen Girl #1: But it was made so long ago. This one has to be scarier, right?
Bingo. If you’re looking for an answer as to why people make remakes, it’s that right there. The remake, I realized, is made for people my age who have never seen the original film who don’t care to see it — they view the remake as being more “modern” and therefore, better. I personally have never viewed it that way. If I want to watch The Texas Chainsaw Massacre again, I’ll watch the original TCM again, not a remake.
I don’t loathe remakes; in fact, I’ve liked some better than the originals, believe it or not. But I can’t help and cry foul on a Will Smith produced Karate Kid remake featuring his own son. Why is it necessary to mess with the original?
Stepping outside the horror genre, why was it necessary to remake The Poseidon Adventure? We already had a made for TV crap version and the original version with Gene Hackman and Ernest Borgnine. The original is not cinematic perfection by any means, but it is a fantastic piece of fried cinema cheese, complete with a wailing, OMG devastated Shelley Winters, people falling into Christmas trees and totally and unintentionally hilarious Gene Hackman. Did we really need to make it a “serious” piece of action movie?
I don’t think so. The problem with all these is that they rarely improve upon the original, because there’s nothing to mess with the original on. (Seriously, makers of Poseidon. I knew it was a losing fight when you couldn’t zombie-like resurrect Shelley Winters and put her in this movie.)
Isn’t there anything, ANYTHING else that we can spend better time and money on? Apparently…not.