Hands off, Hollywood! Classics that should NEVER be remade
This week, we ran the sickening news that the Hollywood machine has moved one step closer to making our nightmare of a Total Recall remake a reality. With so many in the works, and with disturbing whispers in far off corners of the internet reporting that Robert Pattinson is due to take the lead in a hideous new version of Die Hard, it is becoming impossible to guard our favourite movies from the dreaded “re-imagining” process. Here are those which the money men must leave well alone, and what we imagine their new and shiny products to look like…
The 80’s adventure is a beloved childhood memory for legions of fans. Corey Feldman has been talking up a belated sequel for a while, but this seems to have been politely ignored so far…
Thought we’d seen the last of the High School Musical gang? Think again! This laugh-a-minute romp from the Disney studios transplants the entire cast, and relocates the tale to (where else?) New York, as they race the Fratellis to find the treasure. The audience longs for the CGI Sloth to freak out and slaughter the group, but the best they are treated to is a climactic 3D song and dance sequence, which is in no way relevant or affectionate to the original, but clinches the Christmas no. 1 spot with ease.
Consistently popular comedy from the 1980s, featuring an awesome ensemble cast including Dan Akroyd and Bill Murray himself. The third film in the series has been touted for some time, and reaction has been positive in comparison to similar projects, but to attempt to replicate the original would be sacrilege.
Ben Stiller takes the fore as sarcastic Venkman, with Justin Timberlake as an “ironic” Spengler and Michael Cera doing his best to channel Rick Moranis as Louis Tully. All pretty troubling, until Katherine Heigl’s take on possessed Dana leads to fans screaming for Stay Puft to turn up in the spectacular 3D finale so they can all go home and watch the animated TV show instead.
A film noir for the modern era (well, the 1970s), Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway take the leads with stunning performances in Roman Polanski’s unflinching portrayal of corruption, and shows that in life, it’s not always a happy ending….
Robert Pattinson’s hard-nosed PI is drawn into a web of intrigue, as he is hired by Kristen Stewart to investigate the water supply conspiracy. All plot points concerning adultery, murder, and incest are abandoned altogether in order to attract a more teen friendly PG certificate. The film is now 90 minutes long, and centres around a 30 second kissing scene between the leads. A total waste of time and film stock, but the box office goes through the roof as teenage girls across the country flock to see R-Patz with his shirt off in the films second key sequence.
The Blues Brothers
A box office flop on release, The Blues Brothers is nonetheless some of the most fun that can be had in film – a top class soundtrack, spectacular chase scenes at every turn, and cameos from what seems like hundreds of film and music stars. Any film that features Dan Akroyd, John Belushi and John Candy is on to a winner from the start…
In an unspeakable affront to the memory of John Belushi, Jack Black is cast as Jake Blues, who stumbles his way through some CGI- heavy car chases (in 3D!!!) with brother Elwood, played by Sean William-Scott, who forgets to play it straight. The film is finally and irreversibly derailed when the the producers attempt to make the soundtrack more accessible to the youth audience with a delightful Rap sequence in the middle of “Sweet Home Chicago”.
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
The Matthew Broderick role which comes closest to making him “likeable”, this typically John Hughes comedy is notable for some big laughs, and excellent supporting turns from Jeffrey Jones (Principal Rooney) and the underrated Alan Ruck (Cameron)
Who else to bring the rougish charm of Ferris Beuller into the 21st century than…Justin Bieber! When Ferris decides to skip school for a day to embark on a series of adventures, the cheeky chappy gets to travel all across the city of Chicago, taking in the sights and sounds, and even finds time to perform a new single in the parade scene! Yay!
Withnail & I
Revered British comedy about two out-of-work actors living in Camden in the 1960s, who decide to take a break in the country. Featuring career-best performances from Richard E Grant and Paul McGann, the two play wonderfully off each other with sparkling dialogue and a subtle script that requires repeat viewings to catch everything.
Rampaging mercilessly through one of the most beloved scripts in British cinema history, Martin Freeman as Marwood does his best “bemused” face at every turn as Russell Brands “hilarious” Withnail drops a string of badly judged f-bombs, trampling all over the majestic obscenity of the original. Even James Corden’s Cameo as drug-addled Danny is not enough to save this…
The Shawshank Redemption
An epic, poetic and touching meditation on friendship, faith and the indomitable nature of the human spirit. Wrongly accused, Andy Dufresne seeks to escape the injustice he is faced with, and befriends another convicted killer, the prison fixer “Red”.
How to approach a tale of such emotional magnitude and still appeal to a young teenage audience? Make it a comedy! Relocated to an all-girl prison, can Paris Hilton and Nicole Ritchie’s feature length episode of “The Simple Life” touch all the right nerves as Paris BREAKS A NAIL on laundry duty, and Nicole comes THIS CLOSE to freaking out when her cellphone is confiscated? One thing’s for sure, if they can hold down their jobs in the prison library long enough to distract the guards, then hilarity is ensured as they plan their escape!
Dark and Haunting horror film about a pair of Catholic priests doing spiritual battle with the devil, who has taken possession of teenage Linda Blair. Dealing with faith and the notion of an omnipresent evil, this is a powerful film which still packs the scares today.
When young and idealistic catholic priest Father Karras (Sam Worthington) is called to the aid of possessed teenager Regan (Miley Cyrus, branching out into “edgier” roles), an epic battle between good and evil is fought out. Highlights include the huge 3D stream of pea soup vomit, and Cyrus’ rather too enthusiastic delivery of some of the originals most foul-mouthed dialogue.
It would be horribly optimistic to say that Star Wars is immune to this process, but given that George Lucas just can’t leave his masterpiece alone surely its only a matter of time before we see…
When Zac Efron’s farm boy Luke Skywalker receives a distress call from rebel leader Princess Leia (Gemma Arterton….again), he must turn to Ryan Reynold’s rouge smuggler Han Solo, along with Andy Serkis’ mo-capped Chewbacca to free her from the clutches of the evil Darth Vader (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson). The original fan base hate it, but a new legion of 10 year olds pour into the shops to be the first to get their hands on the inevitable wave of merchandise…