GLOCCOVNAA is an abbreviation for 'Great Life of Conflict, Climax or Virtually Nothing At All'. That was the long and ridiculous name I came out for my blog when I was 18 years old. Do click on the colourful icons on the right to check out different types of posts in this blog.

20 October, 2012

Remakesploitation

I got this term from Brad Jones, the phenomenal Cinema Snob himself. Remakesploitation is the term used by him to describe the exploitation of previously successful ideas to spawn new films years later based on that idea, with or without the exact same premise. This practice is old, and by old I mean 70-80 years old. Famous movies like House of Wax starring Vincent Price in 1953 and Scarface starring Al Pacino in 1983 were also remakes! I have a couple of issues about exploitation of remakes.

Thought of this topic after watching the original Total Recall (1990) on the net.
1. What counts as a remake?
A remake is a method of making new production based on ideas and material from past movies, TV shows or cartoons. Remakes can be done to any form of media, but I am only addressing films.
Great movie, great remake... in StereoVision 3D
2. What do they remake?
Most of the producers and film makers would only remake films worth remaking, namely popular and famous ideas in films. There are some rare occasion when they remake previously unknown films, but that is really taking a huge risk. Almost every genre have remakes, for example, Psycho (1960 & 1998), King Kong (1933, 1976 & 2005) and Batman (way too many to count). There are various type of film remakes:

  • Movies - movies: Planet of the Apes, The Fly, A Nightmare on Elm Street
  • TV shows - movies: Mission: Impossible, The A Team, Charlie's Angels
  • Cartoon movies - movies: Transformers series, 101 Dalmations
  • Foreign movies - movies: The Ring, The Grudge, The Departed
  • Movies - Cartoon movies: The Prince of Egypt, Star Wars: Clone Wars

Psycho (1998) was a lazy shot to shot remake of Hitchcock's Psycho (1960).
3. Why remake a movie when the original was already good?
There are many reasons to remake a movie. Some movies like Halloween (1978) created the craze for slasher films and spawned 7 sequels. By the time they got to Halloween: Resurrection (2002), the idea was getting stale and the films got too boringly repetitive. So in 2007, Rob Zombie tried to reboot the franchise by using the idea and characters from the first movie. Many people think this and other remakes are film maker's efforts to "milk the old cow" while some others inject totally new ideas into the concept. Not all remakes are of original film which are good like the coming Crazy Fat Ethel remake in 2013. James Rolfe, the Angry Video Game Nerd, once said that film makers should remake bad movies instead of good ones because there are many bad movies with good stories but were not narrated effectively.
The mentality is simple.
"When you got a good idea, make as much money out of it as possible"
4. Why would people go to watch a remake if it is the same thing?
Let me use Peter Jackson's King Kong as an example. Peter Jackson is an awesome director and he has always admired the Dynamation (stop motion photography) of Ray Harryhausen, especially those in King Kong (1933). His 2005 King Kong movie is an appreciation and homage to his favourite film. The Hammer film production company were also well known for their remakes of horror movies in the 1950s, 1960s and the 1970s. Dracula (1958), Frankenstein (1957) and The Mummy (1959) starring Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee were all remakes of the originals by Universal Studios in 1931. But they were in colour and had slightly different stories. So people watch remakes in hopes of a film with new and inventive plot, visual effects and even overall story line.
Dracula Montage
Every single live action Dracula so far... 1922-present
Total = 32 actors (as of 2012)
5. Are there any remakes that are better than the originals?
This depends very much on personal judgement. There are definitely many remakes which are better in my opinion. The recent movie The Amazing Spiderman is the first that came in my mind. The Sam Raimi version wasn't bad, but new one has much better character development, story line and visuals. The other two I remember are The Thing (1982) and The Fly (1986). These remakes and their originals are all fantastic classics. The only better point of these remakes is their vast improvement in visual effects. I haven't watched Dredd 3D yet, but I heard the story and visuals are good as well. Of course the general consensus that remakes are worst than their originals is accurate most of the time. I am still anticipating the upcoming Man of Steel and Robocop movie in hopes that it can be as good, if not better than the original.
the design looks nice enough, hopefully the movie doesn't disappoint.
**Update**
I just came back from watching Dredd. Although both this and the 1995 Stallone version were entertaining, Karl Urban's performance in this movie is too awesome to ignore. The effects for the Slo-Mo in this movie are nicely done and if you like action movies that depict actual killing and death, this is the movie for you, not the 1995 Judge Dredd. Be aware that this is an adult action movie, so there are many gory and realistic death scenes.

So that's what I think about remakes. Hope you enjoy the huge Dracula montage I made as well :P

lalanandaFRY
20/10/12

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