For those who haven’t heard, Hollywood has recently seen fit to remake the classic 1987 action movie Robocop. Original director Paul Verhoeven had no involvement and the whole thing appears to have little resemblance to the original flick. Originally slated to hit theaters last month, the movie has been pushed all the way back to February 2014 which rarely bodes well. It’s the latest in a long line of movie remakes that are usually vastly inferior to the original. But are there any remakes that are actually any good? Discuss…
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The original Robocop was a brilliantly shlocky sci-fi film that made headlines for its balls-to-the-wall violence. It was also notable for its satirical take on the media, privatization and moral decay, making it a hit with brainy cinema buffs and bogan action fans alike. The new movie appears to have swept most of these themes under the carpet. The studio has also plumped for a PG-13 rating which means virtually all of the elements that made Robocop special have been stripped away. You can check out the latest trailer for yourself below:
Maybe we’re being too hasty. Perhaps we’ll all be pleasantly surprised and the shiny new Robocop will deliver on all of its promises. With that being said, the history of remakes suggests we’re probably right to prejudge it.
In recent years, we’ve had to suffer through a seemingly endless deluge of dodgy reboots as a creatively-dead Hollywood returns to the well, over and over again. Some of the worst offenders include Total Recall, The Texas Chain-Saw Massacre, Death At A Funeral, A Nightmare On Elm Street, Straw Dogs, Clash Of The Titans, Death Race, Conan The Barbarian, The Omen and Planet Of The Apes [note: we’re referring to the Tim Burton version — the 2011 version is actually a prequel and is worth checking out].
And then there was the Nicolas Cage-starring remake of the 1973 cult classic The Wicker Man which frankly defies all description. Check out the below highlight reel for a taste of the gibbering insanity. It’s not intended to be a comedy. No really.
In addition to Robocop 2.0, we also have remakes of Carrie, Gremlins, All Quiet On The Western Front, The Black Hole The Crow, Godzilla (again), The Wild Bunch, Old Boy and The Never Ending Story to look forward to. Is absolutely nothing sacred?
The cynic in us thinks it will only be a matter of time before we get a remake of Jaws — with a completely CGI shark, natch. They’ll probably give the Hooper role to Katy Perry and get Nickelback to do the end-credits soundtrack. Just thinking about it gives us nightmares.
But anyway, all these terrible movies got us wondering about the good-to-bad ratio when it comes to remakes. Are there any examples that are halfway decent or — god forbid — actually better than the original? Off the top of our heads, the only examples we can think of are John Carpenter’s The Thing (which amusingly has since been re-remade badly), David Cronenberg’s The Fly and Sergio Leone’s A Fistful of Dollars (although the last one is treating the term ‘remake’ very loosely).
To help lift us out of our reboot malaise, list your favourite movie remakes in the comments section below. (Note: we’re only interested in titles that you’ve actually seen, so no scouring movie sites for suggestions.)
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