Remake These!

Posted: March 8, 2011 in Uncategorized

A Remake Chronicles Extra By Adam-Troy Castro

As we await the next entry, which covers a french comedy and its American remake, we provide a partial list of movies that should, should, be remade, either because they were made poorly the first time or because they can speak to our present time. Understand that this is not about their box office prospects, but about how much we’d like to see them.


An empty suit.

The Candidate. The process of running for Senator gradually turns an  idealistic young lawyer into an empty suit, disillusioned, depressed, and unable to make a move without his handlers. How much more true is this today, with the 24/7 news cycle? The same material also merits a sequel, Mr. Redford; we can imagine the same guy, an elder statesman who has spent decades in Washington occupying his chair without ever accomplishing a damned thing. Mr. Redford? Please?

One of the best movie beat-downs of all time.

Bad Day At Black Rock. A mild-mannered and disabled WWII vet travels to a hellhole small town to visit the father of a fallen buddy, and discovers that the father has been murdered for the sin of being a Japanese man in the wake of Pearl Harbor. As good as the original film is, and it is very very good, can you not imagine the same situation with an Iraq or Afghanistan War vet who makes a similar journey only to discover that the father of his fallen buddy was murdered for the sin of being a Muslim?


Thanks for the gift, you alien assholes.

The 27th Day. Aliens give five “random” human beings the ultimate weapon and bet them that they can’t resist the temptation to use it before its power goes away. In the 1950s film, the only nonwhite member of the five commits suicide right off. The movie cheats in other ways, as does the novel, but wouldn’t it be epic drama if the five really were more representative of this troubled planet? Like one African whose country is in the midst of Civil War, one angry middle-easterner, one battered American wife, one North Korean and one Haitian kid?

Looks familiar.

 A Face In the Crowd. A self-serving tv personality whips up the masses, for his own personal gain. The greatest performance of Andy Griffith’s career, this film was prophetic in its time. A modern take would speak directly to the political media of our time.

That’s an ugly mug.

Jonah Hex.  A first-rate comic book character becomes a truly awful movie that sullies the reputation of the source for all time. Ha, ha, very funny. Now where’s the real Jonah Hex movie?

  1. Steven H Silver says:

    One film which has been remade but still deserves a competent remake was “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.” Imagine how much more pertinent the remake would have been had it focused on a same-sex couple in modern society.

  2. jensaltmann says:

    When I saw Trancers again last year, I thought that that one needs to be remade with a real budget.

    • Trancers was a great version of the Philip K. Dick story-yes, that’s right, you heard me, a great version. Obviously, the whole WWIII thing between the Soviet Union/Warsaw Pact and the USA/NATO was by now outdated with the end of the Soviet Union, so they made it about a planet deep in space settle by people from Earth. And let’s face it, a battle between a corporate entity and an alliance of anti corporate peoples speaks to what happens today in light of recent events concerning globalization, capatalisim out of control, etc All in all, I’d say that another version of this story might be a good idea..if it hadn’t already been done very well first.

  3. Russ Handelman says:

    FANTASTIC VOYAGE could be a good candidate for remake. It could benefit from imrpoved special effects and a better attention to scientific detail (present in the Asimov novelization but not in the movie), as well as updating of the Cold War politics and dated gender issues. The discussions about religion vs science among the crew would be perhaps even more relevant today.

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