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monkeyfoot 4/17/2012 7:14:46 AM

Well done article, Jarrett (are you new here?). It's a topic that is often bandied about in commentaries on this site.

I have Monkeyfoot's Rules of Remakes that I usually go by, but nobody follows.

-If a movie is really old, obscure,foreign, or FX are not to today's standards, they can be remade.

-A source from another medium can be adapted again for the screen. This means plays, novels, etc. New filmmakers can mine different things from the source.

-Franchise Characters can be be re-made as long as the public wants to see them. Characters like James Bond, Batman, Superman, Tarzan, Sherlock Holmes, etc. These characters are meant to have continuing adventures 'til people are sick of them...then give 'em a rest and bring them back again.

As was noted in the article, the span between remakes seems to have shortened and I don't know why. Maybe it's the need for a surefire title that people recognize in order to make profit. I don't know. I know I don't like it but there is nothing I can do about it. Or as a wise old Vulcan woman once said,"The air is the air. What can be done?"

phantomx69 4/17/2012 7:16:18 AM

i like to see remakes of 70's and 80's B scifi movies, starcrash, spacehunter, stella star!  saturn 3! even cloak & dagger would be cool!

karas1 4/17/2012 8:52:39 AM

Abrams' Star Trek movie was made with you in mind Jarrett.  You knew nothing about the prior versions of ST so he could show you anything.  It was a superior mindless action flick but a miserable version of Star Trek.  Since you didn't know the difference you were bound to be pleased by what you saw.

Does Spiderman really need to be rebooted?  It was a popular franchise which made money and the studio wants to make more money.  But after 3 films the actors and director want to move on to other things.  What to do?  You could either recast the role and hope that audiences will accept an actor other  than Tobey Mcguire as Peter Parker or you can reboot.  Or you can let the franchise rest and choose a different Marvel character to make a movie about.

Now, I'm familliar with the origin of Spiderman and I saw Rami's movie so I really don't feel the need to see another movie about the origin of Spiderman.  I'd rather see a Spiderman movie with a new plot and accept different actors in the roles.  Am I a typical movie viewer?  Apparently the suits don't think so.

There is a difference between a remake and a reimagining.  Avatar is a reimagining of Dances With Wolves, not a remake.  You can watch both films and while there are a lot of similaraties there are substantial differences.  It is a different experience to see Dances With Wolves and to see Avatar, especially if you see the latter in 3D. 

They remade True Grit a few years ago.  I saw the original with John Wayne and I saw the remake.  They were both fine films but having seen them both I'd have to say that the remake was unneeded.  The remake was so similar to the original that it didn't have anything new or different to say.  It was the same film with different actors.  Both versions are good, but seeing them both is unnecessary.


gauleyboy420 4/17/2012 9:00:58 AM


Thats not true. I've watched and enjoyed ST, ST-NTG, and Enterprise my whole life. I don't consider myself a trek(ie/er) but I grew up on ST and love the bejeezus out of it... I also LOVED JJ's Trek... Just because you didn't like it, doesn't mean it was made for non-trek fans...


as for re-boots, I'm fine with them if the first movie SUCKED, like Ang-Hulk... We needed and deserved a good Hulk Movie, and I support re-boots in times like that. As much as I (make myself) enjoy Superman Returns, we deserve a new one too.

For comic movies it's wierd because you can look at it many ways. On one hand you could have it serialized and pull a 007 where we switch creative teams from year to year, but that could lead to Moonraker (JK)

OR you can look at it like when the creative team switches from your comic book (although this site barely covers comics anymore, and I'm not sure how many of you still read them) but when one creative team leaves Spider-Man, he looks different (different cast), sounds different (different writer) and has a diferent director (editor) so re-booting comics movies isn't as big a deal as say remaking Ghostbuster... BTW, No NON-Venkman Ghostbusters, unless there is a whole new cast and it is a continuation (new generation) not a re-make...

shac2846 4/17/2012 9:33:21 AM

 Gauley you have been away for awhile. The site it under new management and they have a comicscape article with spinner rack for the past three weeks. 

Wise, I think your wrong to a certain degree. I bitch about lack of new stuff and I also see new movies just about every week. I stand in line for the big ones like i will this year (Avengers, Promtheus, Spider-Man, DARK KNIGHT RISES) but I try and support the small ones too like Cabin in the Woods and The Raid: Redemption. With a film like the raid it is an excellent action film something that any action junkie would be frozen stiff in their seats from the shear awesomeness. Yet the film hasn't even come out wide yet and they are already develping an american version. It's sad. The director is developing the film into a trilogy and it's likely his sequels will overlap into the american version. If we gave some of these flicks even a fraction just a fraction of the attention that a franchise like Transformers gets it might,  might encourage hollywood to at least look into more original stuff. 

I was a huge Avatar fan and and even bigger James Cameron fan but will be the first too admit I thought Avatar was easily one of his weakest scripts. Having said that I think the people bitching about it's lack of originality will find the sequels appealing. Now that the orgin stuff is out of the way I doubt Cameron would double back on himself and rehash the same story. At least his track record doesn't lead me to believe that.

violator14 4/17/2012 9:39:51 AM

Gee.. we 'never' talk about this crap.....

I still don't get why Avatar always gets harped on for "not being original"

How about the 100's of movies where the spy (who is the best at what he does) kills the agency that betrayed him?? How about the 100's of movies where the vampire sucks blood of innocent people, and then the slayers have to kill the vampire?? How about the 100's of movies where the master assassin kills the bad guys who killed his family member?? How about the 100's of movies where there is a superhero with an alter ego who has to fight the evil villain?? How about the 100's of movies where the guy chases the girl at the end of the movie and confesses his love for her in a public crowd and it ends with a happy ending?? How about the 100's of movies where a serial killer/being goes on a murdering rampage and needs to be stopped?? Aren't these all remakes too????  How about who gives a crap!!!??

InnerSanctum 4/17/2012 10:05:29 AM

 One thing I might point out, Avatar was a very subpar movie when the 3D effect was removed.  I don't hate it, I just don't think it was a good movie in 2D.  

And, I'd have to disagree...it is the rare treat when a remake is "succesful", or even adds to the original.  Not saying it hasn't been done, but it definitely is not a proven formula, or a guarantee.  

Higgy 4/17/2012 10:27:21 AM

I'm surprised no one else caught this.  Second paragraph, first line.  Spider-Man is not a Marvel/Disney production.  Sony owns the writes to Spidey right now man.

monkeyfoot 4/17/2012 10:35:11 AM

Violator, I completely agree. It has been commented before that there are only a certain number of drama interactions that can exist between human beings. The classic Boy meets Girl, Boy loses Girl, Boy gets Girl, for example. Sci-fi expands this a little more with other possibilities. There is also what's called the "monomyth". This is the story of a hero's journey through trials and tribulations to eventually come out transformed and triumphant. This one and other myths appear to be in mankind's subconscious because you find examples in every culture.

Some of these are storylines we've seen time and again in movies and TV. If we think it's bad we say, "Oh that's just (fill in the blank) underwater or in space." But if it works for us it is a fantastic film or book done by a great actor/director/writer. What makes these re-tellings work for the indivdual is the spark, that special something, the storyteller gives to it. It's the difference between say having actor Ben Stein read you Goldilocks & the 3 Bears in his monotone style or having Jim Carrey, Robin Williams, or (fill in the blank) tell it in a way that keeps you locked in as if in a trance.

The basic idea of Avatar is an old storyline that goes even further back than Dances With Wolves, so you can't say where it was "stolen" from. Which one you like will depend on your indivdual tastes and if the teller can hypnotize you successfully. That's what we want in any story remake or not. 

batkruse 4/17/2012 10:43:56 AM

Sorry about that Higgy. I was under the impression that ASM had reverted to a DISNEY production. My bad...

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