Friday, July 18, 2008

Dude, Where's My Hockey Mask, pt. 2

It seems there's an announcement that bears mentioning: Michael Bay is remaking the original Friday the 13th. I would say this is pure conjecture, except there's confirmation. Now, for this reviewer, this is pretty fine news for a couple of reasons: 1) I loved Transformers, and 2) the original Friday the 13th needs to find new blood (pardon the pun) in the same way that the Batman franchise did after suffering through the Val Kilmer/George Clooney incarnations.

Can you ever remake an original, as campy as it might be? Can a film ever be remade, or is something new made? As low-budget as the original two films are, they're...what's the word...charming? the right degree of campy? fart-tastic? I'd argue that since films are each unique instantiations, singular visions which are not repeatable, what Bay is putting together promises to be not a blow-for-blow filming of the original, but some kind of social commentary or bleed-fest all its own. I'm hoping that Jason Vorhees doesn't wind up being a metaphor for child welfare or single-parent families.

And thus, in honor of Michael Bay's honorable effort, I give you the top 5 films I'd love to see someone give a facelift to, in no particular order:

Plan 9 From Outer Space--I love Johnny Depp. If he's in the film, I'm watching it, and Ed Wood was the most bizarre of his films that there is, I think, with this film was the subject of the film. By all accounts, it was the worst of the worst B movies, and is dying to be reborn.

Simon Birch--I nearly threw up watching this, because it was a complete and total butchering of one of the most fantastic books I've ever read: A Prayer for Owen Meany.

Dune--I've never read the book, but been told the film doesn't come close.

The Stand--this one only made it to the mini-series level, but still, the miniseries was awful. The Stand is almost universally recognized as one of King's masterpieces, and if Dreamcatcher can wind up on celluloid, so can this.

Catwoman--I wasn't born with enough middle fingers to rank this one.

Honorable mention:
Ishtar--Dustin Hoffman has to find redemption from this.


John Barber said...

I'm generally opposed to the remaking of movies - especially current ones. But I do like your list.

Funny thing, though, about SIMON BIRCH. I love A PRAYER FOR OWEN MEANY like it's one of my own children. I've read it probably a dozen times. Yet, I also have a lot of love for Simon. In my twisted mind, I can separate the two somehow. I don't particularly associate them. I see OWEN as more of an inspiration than anything. And the Christmas play scene in SIMON is brilliant. Plus I love me some David Strathairn.

Pepe Guzman said...

myles - first of all, have you ever seen the original FRIDAY THE 13TH? last i heard, you had never seen the first or second FRIDAY films. both are absolutely beautiful and brilliant. the original FRIDAY film, alone, birthed an entire genre, writing the rules that all future slasher films must abide by (ie. premarital camp counselor nasties leads to death, killers in the woods walk instead of run in a chase, nipples lead to blades in less than three minutes). not to mention, the original FRIDAY is already a scary mo-fo. it took me a few days to get over the first person point of view murder scenes. spooky. gruesome. great.

with this said, i heartily disagree with you, myles: FRIDAY THE 13TH part 1 does not need a facelift - it is a pivotal piece of americana as it stands. if bay is working up a remake on this we can only hope he uses it as a road to rebleed parts three through.....

also, let's get one more thing straight: if bay is planning a true remake of the original film, there will be no jason vorhees to speak of. jason merely made a cameo appearance at the end of part 1 - and not as a slasher. so, if bay thinks he's going to take mommy dearest out of the mix, he's going to have a little army of hockey-masked fans to answer to.

alright. i'm done preaching. good call on the CATWOMAN. morgan freeman's fox delivers a single line to bale's bruce wayne in the new BATMAN that made me and latonya elbow each other in hopes that, yes, indeed, someone is hoping to bring back the CATWOMAN - sans halle berry.

i would be fine to exist in a hollywood sans halle berry from here on out. unless the X-MEN need her for storm. but that's just me talking.

the hamster said...

SHITE! pepe will not be happy that i just attributed all those FRIDAY thoughts to him!

the hamster wrote the pepe post above! the hamster did it! not pepe! i'm at pepe's house and didn't think to check the publishers name.

the hamster said...

i just read that story that you linked to at the beginning of the post.

bad news: screenplay writers for FREDDY VS JASON are set to do this script. one of the top five worst films i've ever seen.

good news: director of TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE: THE BEGINNING. one of the top five most disturbing and nauseating films i've ever seen. made HOSTEL look like my little pony.

bad news: blending parts one and two just to get jason in the mix.

good news: fresh fodder for hockey mask parts to come.

the hamster said...

myles - hey, i reread my statement and realized that it sounded a bit attacking. when i brought up the question of you having seen the original two films or not, i meant to follow that with a high recommendation to take in a double feature while the lady is out of town. we are baby sitting today, and i got distracted while i wrote the comment. i think my distraction allowed me to sound a bit more offended than i actually was. sorry, bro. keep the jason vorhees news coming.

Anonymous said...

Here's a few:

1) X-MEN 3. The first two films were great, with multiple levels in them. The third was pure crap + special effects. It butchered all the character development set up in the first two. Ratner ruined the series, and everyone was hoping for a nice, clean, entertaining trilogy. Bryan Singer, let's just pretend you never left this project for Superman Returns (which wasn't all that great), and let you have your own crack at a third X-MEN film.

2) SILVER BULLET, the Stephen King werewolf movie from the 80's starring Corey Haim. Yeah, it was fun to watch, but would be a great remake because, not since this film has Hollywood made a true werewolf film where you actually get to see the monster (American Werewolf in London was good, but that was it's main problem). Recent films have pitted them, the most terrifying of actual mythic monsters, against vampires, masquerading as Native Americans, or retelling a Shakespearean drama. The chilling feel of a werewolf movie is found in this once a month killing, and the mystery of who is behind it, and the slow discovery that there is a blood-thirsty monster prowling the woods of your small, rural town. Man, Hollywood just needs to simplify...

3) ORDER OF THE PHOENIX - Not really a remake. Just give me a friggin' extended version, or add an hour or something. The book was 800 pages, and you hand me an 100 minute movie??? It was good, but that only goes to show you could have added a little bit more. Not everything ... but a little bit more.