Some films are simply classics and should stay that way, but remakes are a way to either recreate a film that was not well known and give it a new found popularity, or to recreate a beloved film with the intention of introducing it to a new generation. However, there are remakes that turn out bad and in some way tarnish the legacy of the original film altogether.
Here are my top 5 worst remakes:
The original 1972 film The Poseidon Adventure starring Gene Hackman was a great disaster film, but 34 years later the remake called Poseidon does not live up to expectations. Like many, I was a fan of the original and I dismissed the remake before I saw it, seeing it as just another chance for filmmakers to flex their CGI muscles. However after seeing it, it did confirm that I was right and with a number of annoying small changes to the plot not even the director Wolfgang Peterson (Das Boot, The Perfect Storm) could salvage such a poor script.
The Grudge (2004)
In recent years, American film makers have been fond of remaking horror films from South Korean and Japan. The remake of The Ring was surprisingly good, which left high expectations for the remake of Ju-on: The Grudge. The remake stars Sarah Michelle Gellar but unlike The Ring, this remake fails to recreate the creepy atmosphere of the original and in its effort to recreate the eeriness, it just ends up being utterly boring.
Horror films are constantly being remade, but the one that should have definitely been left alone is John Carpenter’s 1978 classic horror film Halloween. Halloween set the benchmark for all slasher films to come and with a string of not so successful films in the franchise, director and musician Rob Zombie decided to start from scratch and reboot the whole series. With a slightly different plot to the original, the remake focuses more on Michael Myers’s childhood and what led him to be the serial killer we know. For me, I didn’t need to know the extent of Myers’s difficult childhood and the ambiguity of him killing his sister in the original was enough for me. In some ways, this remake only has the spirit of the original, but even as a horror film in its own right, it is disappointing.
The Hitcher (2007)
The Hitcher was a great horror film of the eighties that took a common American practice and highlighted the worst case scenario that could occur from it. The remake is about a psychotic hitchhiker called John Ryder (Sean Bean) who terrorises a young couple. Like most remakes, there are a few changes to the plot, in this case the way in which they first come into contact with the hitchhiker. The film however is not as chilling as it was the first time around and with big shoes to fill, Sean Bean did his best to imitate Rutger Hauer’s menacing performance, but doesn’t quite manage it.
Clash of the Titans (2010)
Sam Worthington (Terminator Salvation, Avatar) and Gemma Arterton star in the remake of the original 1981 fantasy adventure film. In comparison to Ray Harryhausen’s stop motion animation of the original, the remake’s use of CGI may makes the original seem a little antiquated. However the flashy effects do not compensate for the number of areas in the plot that are different from the original. This film will definitely be enjoyable for a younger audience, but for those who remember the original, it is just a glorified imitation.