Friday, 20 January 2012

Workshop QOTD: To remake or not to remake?

I'm finally going to get to see The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo tonight. Now I love Fincher, always have since 7. Even when he misses it is still with so much style and verve that it's really captivating (yes The Game I'm talking about you). He really is one of the most interesting directors around. Generally I hate Hollywood remakes so it is with some trepidation that I am going but if any one can pull it off the Fincher can. I'll let you know tomorrow if I think he does.

The problem with Hollywood remakes is that they're taking something alien and trying to turn them into something palatable for American audiences. To me this means that they don't trust the audience to have a little intelligence, a little taste and so they always dumb things down. In doing so they always feel like something is lost in translation. Of course I am generalising here but you get the point (Wickerman anyone?)

A good example of this is Verbinski's take on The Ring. Now for a Hollywood film it's a really good film in it's own right but even so it can help falling for the old Hollywood tricks and as such it loses all sense of dread and terror that makes the original so scary. That sense of normality that made it get in your head and twist around your brain and squeeze the life out of you.

Also foreign films have their own unique tone and pacing depending on where they come from, some fast, some slow but all different. I love that sense of experiencing the world through a different set of eyes. I just think it would be very dull if all films were tonally the same as the boardroom suits would like. Mind you even films within Hollywood vary massively and long may that last.

My biggest bug-bear though is that they have to re-make them in English because they believe the audience won't go to see the original 'cos they gotta read, as if the audience are either too stupid or too lazy to read. Personally I like having to read subtitles it makes me feel like I'm experiencing a new world, a different culture something that is new to me or not quite understood by me and I have to keep up but maybe most people don't.

So what's your fave Hollywood remake? Why does it work? Does it maintain any sense of the original? Is it better?

Thank God they've decided to shelve the US remake of Akira is all I can say.

Bye-Bye for now

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