Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Some Movies Should Just Be Left Alone

The 00's (can't really call them the two-thousands can we?) have been the decade of the remake in Hollywood. Off the top of my head, Dukes Of Hazzard, Star Trek, King Kong, War of the Worlds, Halloween and countless other re-hashings of old movies or TV shows have sprouted up in the past ten years. It seems that nothing is safe from a re-imagining these days. Some like Star Trek and Battlestar Galactica really improved upon the original material while others (Friday the 13th, Land of the Lost) should have never been made.

I'm fine with letting directors and producers try to make a concept fresh and relevant again but there are some movies that just seem to be too classic, memorable and well.... recent. These films should be left alone. Last week, the new poster was revealed for the upcoming Karate Kid remake (rumor has it the producers may go with either The Kung-Fu Kid or The Karate Kid as the final title). The original 80's classic with Ralph Macchio and the late Pat Morita was a solid underdog story that featured some of the most memorable bad guys in film (Cobra Kai). "Sweep the Leg" and "Put him in a body bag!" are still catch phrases I use to this day. The film was a quintessential '80s popcorn flick and is still very watchable 25 years later.

In steps Will Smith and his son Jaden to throw up all over the original film. Don't get me wrong, I'm a Fresh Prince fan for life and was all-in on Smith's film career early on after seeing him in Bad Boys in the theater in college, but what is he thinking here? The new film puts Jaden in the lead role with Jackie Chan as his mentor. The synopsis from IMDB is as follows:

Jaden Smith's character moves to Beijing with his mother, where he encounters a bully situation similar to Macchio's in his new locale. Smith's character will be named Dre instead of Daniel, and take lessons from Chinese martial arts master Mr. Han, played by Jackie Chan.

I'm sure they're going to try to make this hip for the new generation but in reality the cheese of the 80's version is what makes the film so timeless. Do we really need to update all our classics to allow the Zac Effrons and Miley Cyruses of the world to re-enact what was already done well? I hear that Effron was in talks to re-do Footloose. What's next? I know, let's cast Michael Cera as Ferris Bueller. Or remake Aliens with Michelle Rodriguez as Ripley. Anything to make a buck. Instead of resurrecting these story ideas, studio executives should invest in original concepts like District 9 or The Hangover.

I'm calling for a moratorium on remakes of any movie that was released after 1980. There should be a 30-year window of time that must pass before any film can be considered to be "updated" or "rebooted." I refuse to acknowledge Will Smith's son in the role of Daniel Larusso and I hope that film tanks in the box office when it's released. I believe that my fellow children of the 80's would agree with me on this and may we never see another Weird Science, Teen Wolf or Goonies grace the big screen in our lifetime.

1 comment:

Stacey said...

Word. Couldn't have said it better myself.