In days of yore, in a hamlet called Hollywood, a great movie would come along that would become a classic for the ages (cue fanfare music and drums). A movie that is so well made, that it is remembered for all times. So, why, oh why, does Hollywood seem to think that it is necessary to remake said movie? And, as if remaking it isn’t enough, they have to totally screw up the whole story, that if you were the original, you would not want to be associated with the remake. You would be in Cabo, in the movie protection program, your name changed to protect the innocent.
I mean, the scripts stink, the stars are very poor choices, and the overall feel of the movie would never even make you believe it was actually an attempted remake of the original. And, believe me putting a big name actor into the remake does not make it good. I mean, sheesh, come on Hollywood. Stop recycling old movies, tearing them to bits, and leaving the mayhem for moviegoers to deal with. Come up with something fresh, something original, something…wait I forgot who I was talking about. My bad! So, with that in mind, let’s take a look at the top 15 horrible movie remakes (if my stomach can handle it, that is).
15. Charlie And The Chocolate Factory
This movie is so wrong on so many levels, I honestly do not even know where to start. First off, I loved the original. I do not know of any kid my age (no, it is not important for this article for you to know my age – get over it!!) who didn’t love this movie, and rooted for Charlie to find that so treasured, so needed, so golden (my precious!) ticket! Sorry, slipped into another genre for a moment there. Anyways, this movie is a classic, and to this day one of the best feel good movies out there. Well, until the remake came along. Jeez, the remake. Other than the fact that the main actor creeps the ever loving crud out of me, it’s headed up by Tim Burton. That right there tells you the psychological creepy level is going to go through the roof. Then, wait for it, they cast Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka. What? Huh? Umm…why? I mean to be honest, if I saw his character, handing out chocolate to children, I would drag my child as far away as I could. This man more than tilts the scales on strange.
14. A Room With A View
The original version of this movie was the epitome of style and grace, oozing of class and sophistication. And, then comes some executive in Hollywood, who had what he thought was the idea of the decade – let’s remake Room with a View. Oh, and not just remake it like it was, let’s put our modern day grubby hands on it, and really kill the original’s legacy. Let’s make sure that the script stinks, and that the movie has to rely on the well-known actors. I am sure when Helena Bonham Carter and Daniel Day-Lewis were approached about starring in this remake they thought it would be a GOOD thing. Wonder what they are thinking now? Maybe I shouldn’t have had that extra glass of wine at the concept meeting? I would almost bet good hard earned money they were both either inebriated or just not paying attention when they were handed the script on this one. I don’t believe any two people could look any more uncomfortable than these two do. Almost makes me cringe for them. YIKES!
13. Pride and Prejudice
I can remember the collective groans in my high school literature class when it was announced that we would be reading – Pride and Prejudice (shudder). With the book version even the cliff notes didn’t help give you a leg up. There was a deeper meaning to everything anyone said, and so many deeper meanings I continued to lose count… and interest. So, they make a movie. Not much easier than the book to follow. And, there is where I thought it would end. But, no, they have to bring that traumatic time in every high schoolers life back to the big screen, making us cringe in fear. This time around, it made even LESS sense, which I would have thought would have been darned near impossible. So, to cover up the totally awful retelling, they thought, “lets cast Keira Knightley! She is young, hot, and coming off the success of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.” Maybe the creators should have had Captain Jack chuck this remake off the Flying Dutchman for them, because resting in Davey Jones locker is a good place for it.
12. Planet of the Apes
What fan of the genre does not still get chills when Charlton Heston spits out one of Hollywood’s most memorable lines, “get your hands off me you damn dirty ape?” Man, just writing it gave me a total body chill. Love the movie, love the man, and how can you think of trying to improve on a something that set the standard for sci-fi movies of its time, and for those to come. Well, most wouldn’t, but most are not Hollywood. The remake was much more dark and dank than the original by leaps and bounds. Kind of like what you feel at the bottom of a well, which is where I would have rather been than to have to set through this version. But, then again, it IS a Tim Burton movie… pretty much nuff said!! The original had an air of hope, whereas the remake has a stench of, well, you know. And, this is another example of putting a currently well-known actor into a position to carry the movie. I really do hope that Mark Wahlberg (always Marky-Marky to me) fired the agent that advised him to take this role.
11. The Wolfman
In my mind, nothing can compare to the original Wolfman. It was filmed during an era where a horror movie was still one that was made to instill a visceral reaction of fear, not all this blood and guts that they call horror today. They should call it for what it is, sensationalism, that does not rely on the script, but on the body count. (sigh). Although there were two remakes before it, and this version had more than enough big name stars, it left me howling (for someone to let me out of the theatre!) I mean, I just do not know what to say about his one. The storyline dragged in places almost like the Wolfman himself had it by its neck, choking the very life out of it. You are thinking to yourself, just show one good monster, and maybe this movie will be worth it. But, no such chance. That would be too easy. Hollywood would rather waste your time and money, which is what they undeniably did with this remake.
10. The Truth About Charlie
Another case of throwing two well-known actors together and thinking you can get a movie out of it. Although Mark Wahlberg and Thandie Newton are phenomenal actors in their own right, in this movie their chemistry is down-right dismal. It created a spark alright, but the kind that would send them both up in flames, looking to stop, drop and roll. Yes, it was THAT bad! Another thing, when Hollywood remakes these movies, and sets them in a current time period do they not know that will not always play into the overall acceptance of the movie? Sometimes, I say sometimes, they can pull a former movie into the current period, and make it work. This one is not one of those movies. The writers tried to keep the same storyline, and I guess they thought the same feel, but introduce modern day language and colloquialisms. For goodness sake Hollywood, have you not learned a lesson in all your attempts at this type of retellings? I am thinking the answer is NO! So, you just keep spewing out remakes of what once were beautiful classics, doing the original a massive disservice. You keep on, keeping on, because you are Hollywood, and nothing you do could ever be wrong. Yeah, right (that is sarcasm by the way LOL!)
9. The Goodbye Girl
The original of this movie is one that Hollywood should have definitely let be. With the chemistry that Richard Dreyfuss and Marsha Mason exuded in this film, there is no way another duo could do it justice. Now, in this case, Hollywood didn’t even attempt to change the script. That would mean actually vesting in the production. They knew the original was perfect as is. But, then they thought, let’s just throw a couple of new faces into the story, but keep the dialogue the same. Let’s not update it, or at least act like we care one way or the other. Come on people! If you are going to take the time to film a remake, at least TAKE the time! Can we please just stop going through the motions, and then act all surprised when the thing is a major flop?
8. Ice Castles
Some movies, set in a certain time, draw from the events of that time to help their story along. Ice Castles is one of those types of movies. During the 70s, ice skating was a big deal. It was on the cusp of producing some of the best skaters in Olympic history. This movie was timed perfect, and the box office showed that. Then, Hollywood chose to remake it, and just throw it out there. They decided to really shake things up (because as we know that always works really well…right!) They get what they think is the perfect concept, let’s totally change the whole dynamic of the characters, thus turning the over-all tone of the movie into a real stinkaroo. Gone are the sensitive, innocent characters that you cried with and rooted for (who didn’t cry when she got her vision back and came to him…sniff). Now, in modern day Hollywood, the script writers get this, what I can only term as a notion that making the two main characters’ brass, abrasive, and down-right unlikable would really help the story along. WRONG! Hollywood totally dropped the box office ball on that one. I cannot believe that the film industry expected people to sit through this drivel and then not feel like they had been robbed at gun point. There is no way they can honestly tell me that they thought this was anywhere near a decent remake of such a beautiful story. Puh-leaze!!
So, you want to have Fame and live forever? Well, sorry to burst your bubble, but it is not going to happen with this remake, unless you mean living forever as being chained to an absolute flop. The original had substance, guts, and yes I will say it, moxie!! This one, well let’s just say it is not even in the same zip code. To say that the remake is merely a whisper of a ghostly vision, watered down and made a hodge-podge of mediocre dancing and singing scenes would, well, give this one way too much credit. In all honesty, this film would have been better served, if just to not have been made as a theatrical release at all, but to be made as a television one off show. More like something in the vain of todays So You Think You Can Dance or the ever popular Glee. This remake was nowhere near box office quality, not to mention the quality needed to make it anywhere in the ball park of the original. If I were an actor in this one, I might consider seriously leaving this one off my acting resume.
6. Conan the Barbarian
Oh, the visions of rippling muscles, flexing biceps, and Arnold trying his best to deliver his dialogue in as close to understandable English as possible, brings back the memories. The fact that the original producers of this one not only attempted this fan favorite, but got it right in such a way will go down in history as a cult generating classic. So, why did Hollywood feel it had to mess with perfection? They were so far ahead of the game already they were looking at it in their rear view mirror. And why try to remake the original, almost line for line? Why not take the main character and give him a new adventure? Conan has been around a long time, there was something else they could have written for him, surely. On second thought why not write an all-around barbarian story, leaving Conan’s name off of it? They might not have seen such a dismal return at the box office if they had. And Jason Momoa? Come, seriously? SERIOUSLY!?!?
5. The Women
The original version, as well as the remake, casts only women for the main roles. I mean, look at the title of the movie. Although men do play a part in moving the plotline along, they are not shown on screen. A really feminist, feel good movie if ever there was one. Although the main casting choices were great in the original, in no way, shape or form can that be said about the remake. Not only did they try an update it, and failed, but they bring in “girl of the moment” Meg Ryan, queen of the chick flicks. They must have needed someone who was good at boo-hooing and whining in this role, which if that was the case, kudos. I don’t think you could have done any better in your choice. Oh, and to beat all, for the movies coup de gras they case none other than Jada Pinkett Smith. I don’t think they could have scraped the barrel any lower for an actress to appear in this movie. Unlike Meg, who is the resident boo-hooing whiner, Jada takes up the mantel in most of her movies as the uptight, always in a foul mood individual. Basically, in a nutshell, the script stinks, the choice of actresses stink, and remake stinks (drop the mike! LOL!)
I can remember the first time I saw the original of this movie. I about laughed my butt off! In every respect of the role Dudley Moore WAS Arthur, the boy inside a man’s body who never grew up. A role that was made for him, portrayed by him, and made to go down in history as a sure classic. So, when Hollywood got this big brainstorm “Hey, we need to remake Arthur, because we haven’t defiled the memory of enough of the good ones yet.” And, defile the memory they attempted to do, that is for sure. As if just remaking the classic was not enough, they put in boozing, bad mouthed, ill-tempered Russell Brand as Arthur. True, he is much like the main character in his own life, minus the bad mouthing, but otherwise, not sure what made them think this was a mediocre choice, let alone a wise one. He can’t act, he can’t carry himself in the manner the role dictates, and he is just so unlikeable in the role it is unbelievable. Helen Mirren, love her heart, is cast as the nanny to Brand’s character, and even though she if one fine actress, even she could not bolster this movie up.
3. The Bad News Bears
When the original Bad News Bears came out, it was a time when movies still had the guts to say what they wanted, when they wanted, about who they wanted, at whoever they wanted. They had a good ol’ I don’t give a crap attitude when they made films. If it was controversial all the better, let’s make a movie about it. Those were the days when stories of guts and grit came out of Hollywood. Nowadays, everyone is so worried about saying something to offend someone, something that might be interpreted in the wrong way, that they just do not say anything anymore. Such is the case of this horrible remake. It is almost as if the writers went through the motions of writing a script, but without really having an actual plotline. This was a movie, only in the sense that it was on the screen, and contained actors belching out nonsensical dialogue. Otherwise, there honestly was no point to it at all.
2. The Karate Kid
Mr. Miyagi, the holder of hopes and dreams of bullied adolescent males everywhere. You can believe with this remake, that Pat Morita is doing cartwheels in his grave. This is one classic that gets a resounding NO! You cannot remake perfection, so don’t embarrass yourself, or the movie goers by even thinking you can. There was no way this movie was expected to be box office gold. It was more of an opportunity for Will Smith to get his son, in the title role, seen by Hollywood, so as to launch his career. Although, the jury is still out on whether it launched his career, or left it DOA. Whoever in tinsel town thought that they could find someone who could even match up to Ralph Macchio’s interpretation, well, they should be fired. While you are at it, fired the fool who though that Jackie Chan would be able a good choice for Mr. Miyagi. Jeez, I mean, honestly?
1. Clash of the Titans
My, oh my, saving the worst one for last. This movie stunk!! I should just leave it right there, but I honestly can’t. The original had such a meaty storyline, with little reliance on special effects. The hero was likeable, and the damsel in distress was even halfway tolerable. But in the remake, the viewer could not stomach either one. To say that the movie was, meh, would be giving it way too much credit. The characters are not even remotely likeable, the damsel in distress was so whiney I just wanted to chuck her off a cliff somewhere and be done with it, and to be honest, way too many special effects in this one for my liking. Oh, and again, some executive, who already knew from the script that this one would flop worse than a fish out of water, decided let’s put Liam Neeson in there, as Zeus. He will be able to give the movie some gravitas. (Clearing my throat…) Nope, you dropped the ball on that one. In fact, Mr. Neeson’s portrayal of Zeus was so bland and cardboard like that it only served to hurt this movie even more, if possible. No, there was no way this one was going to work, period, end of story.