So I just got out of watching the “new” movie remake “The Thing”. I am now thoroughly convinced that Hollywood has run out of original ideas. Before I went to “The Thing” I knew I wanted to write about it, but didn’t have an angle. After the credits I knew how this blog would end up. I also happened to watch the original for reference since it had been years since I last saw it… I highly receommend it even if your not going to see the new incarnation.
I’m the type of person who likes to see who directed a film before I go to a movie and learned ahead of time that The Thing’s new director is Matthijs van Heijningen Jr. I was surprised that a virtual unknown was commissioned to take on a horror classic and walk in the footsteps of horror great John Carpenter. I was alarmed, but hopeful that I would get an unexpected surprise like I did when I saw (a then unknown) David Slade’s “30 Days of Night” which I thought was phenomenal.
SPOILER ALERT: The entire movie is set as the prequel to the 1982 original. That being said, one would expect a movie with a different plot and different sequence of events… at the very least different fricking scenes! Van Heijningen was either trying at an homage or direct rip off of Carpenter’s work, I can’t tell which. Carpenter’s best scene (IMO) where the scientists were tested one-by-one, revealing a monster in disguise… hacked. Carpenter’s scene where a member of the group is isolated until tested… hacked. If the main function of this movie is to lead up to the opening scene of the 1982 original, then why would Van Heijningen use virtually the same scenes?
Here’s a pretty good list of some bad hollywood remakes, which begs the question: Why do they keep doing this to us? I am starting to think that there are really no original ideas left in Hollywood and all that’s left is unoriginal re-hashed movies that catch our eye with new computer generated graphics or trendy 3D. The last movie I can remember seeing that I thought had a truly original concept was “Inception” from writer/director Christopher Nolan.
Nolan also impressed me with his other original masterpiece “Memento” which he directed and co-wrote with his brother Jonathan Nolan. The irony is that Nolan has also directed the latest run of “Batman” remake movies: 2005, 2008, 2012 (which I think are the best versions in addition to Tim Burton’s 1989 version). Nolan also recently worked as a story writer for “Man of Steel”… yes… a Superman remake prepped for a 2013 release (no official trailer available yet).
I guess I’m just tired of it. Either: A) Hollywood thinks we’re stupid and will spoon feed us the same regurgitated plots like a mama bird because we continue to fork out the $11.00 a ticket, or B) They really have run out of original ideas and are scrambling like crack heads with a $10 bill to find their next fix. Either way… it’s just bad business.
What are the best and worst movie remakes in your opinion and do you want to keep seeing the same storylines updated by technology? Is this a lack of originality, or just moviemakers capitalizing on the “franchiseness” of classic titles.
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