Comment On Why We Are Happy To Be Caught In A Web Of Movie Remakes

Why we are happy to be caught in a web of movie remakes

From The Amazing Spider-Man to Total Recall, is our thirst for familiar stories growing, or are fresh ideas simply drying up?Enthusiasm for The Amazing Spider-Man has been tempered by a caveat. In the words of Roger Ebert, "We didn't really need to be told Spidey's origin story again." It's only five years since the same studio gave us the third instalment of a different version of the same arachnid hero's exploits. The pace of cinematic coprophagia seems to be hotting up. So does its volume.Last week on this site, Ben Child bracketed Sony's reboot with the forthcoming remake of Total Recall. However, also coming shortly are remakes, reboots, reinvisionings, reimaginings, reinventions, retoolings, rethinks or reinterpretations of Carrie, The Great Gatsby, Godzilla, Dirty Dancing, Red Dawn, American Psycho, Judge Dredd, Tomb Raider, Frankenstein, Akira, My Fair Lady, All Quiet on the Western Front, Rebecca, Short Circuit, Barbarella, Starship Troopers, The Seven Samurai, Scarface, A Star is Born, Suspiria, RoboCop, The Birds, Death Wish, Westworld and plenty more. All this has revived a familiar complaint: why can't we have fresh stories instead?The bleat can be overdone: it's not as though everything is second-hand. An analysis of American-made releases in 2010 found that 60% were neither remakes, sequels or prequels, adaptations from other media, English language copies of foreign titles, 3D retrofits or even retellings of ancient myths. All the same, that leaves 40% that were indeed one of the above, and it's those films that took the lion's share of both multiplex screens and studio budgets.Moans about this state of affairs are long-standing: Ebert's own TV show was grumbling away on this theme back in 1976. Yet even then, retreads enjoyed an august history. Since 1903, Hollywood has made 29 versions of The Three Musketeers. After all, filmgoers have got to know why they're buying a ticket. Trusting your favourite stars and directors is all very well, but there's nothing like buying into a story that you're sure you already like, especially if you've grown to love the characters.In theory, knowing what's going to happen ought to ruin narrative impact. Fury about spoilers on this site suggests that for many, it does. Still, others seem to delight in being told the same old tale over and over again. Those who've tried to get their kids off to sleep without a 48th retelling of an all-too-familiar favourite will recognise the syndrome. Joseph Campbell's The Hero with a Thousand Faces helped persuade film-makers like George Lucas that their job consisted of retelling mythic stories. Box-office returns have taught them they can even keep the same protagonists and titles.If anything, a thirst for the old, old stories is actually growing, as "retromania" feeds an appetite for cultural archaeology. Once, the young were repelled by their parents' faves, but in the era of YouTube and Netflix, archive artefacts have acquired their own kind of cachet.It's easy to blame a "creative vacuum" in Hollywood on corporate greed, but ultimately it's demand that shapes commercial realities. Directors may prefer to innovate, but producers need to feel confident that the public will welcome their output. In the 1970s, with the studio system in decline, auteurs enjoyed a day in the sun. The likes of Roman Polanski could get something like Chinatown made without too much difficulty. Since then, big business has tightened its grip, and much bigger budgets mean that there's much more at stake.Nowadays, studios tend to be valued largely on the intellectual property they possess, so they're forced to sweat their creative assets. Remaking their older titles boosts brand value and therefore the total worth of the business. Hence the milking of old faithfuls like The Omen, Halloween, The A-Team, Fame, Fright Night, Conan the Barbarian, Arthur, The Green Hornet and Straw Dogs. If Sony had decided to park Spider-Man for bit, the rights would have reverted to Marvel; it couldn't have afforded to let that happen. Thus it is that unlike Polanski, directors like Marc Webb, who've cut their teeth on a jeu d'esprit like 500 Days of Summer but want to get on, find themselves entangled in franchise-land.So, we can all look forward to déjà vu over and over again. You know you like it really. Some of cinema's greatest triumphs have been remakes, including The Fly, Airplane!, Heat, The Magnificent Seven, The Thing, Ben-Hur, A Fistful of Dollars, The Maltese Falcon and Some Like It Hot.ScreenRant has had a go at setting out rules for what might constitute an acceptable reiteration. These come down to the insistence that something new must be added to what is old. By this measure, The Amazing Spider-Man does pretty well. I'd tell you why, but some of you don't like spoilers.Action and adventureScience fiction and fantasyDavid © 2012 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

  • CBS Sci-Tech: Forrest Hayes case: Was Google exec's death an ... - CBS News
    The Google executive's death caught the ... WEB OF SECRETS The wealthy Google ... with boys were not always happy ones ... a scene out of a ...
    01/24/2015 - 12:34 pm | View Link
  • CHINA: Crime And Punishment - Strategy Page
    ... illegally but were caught and shot ... to appear on Chinese web sites. ... Chinese is even less happy with North ... pleased with the fact ...
    01/23/2015 - 5:27 am | View Link
  • Zooey Deschanel engaged to Jacob Pechenik - WSPA
    ... men in Hollywood have been less than happy in their praise. Movie-goers ... the hottest viral videos on the web. ... U.K. Vanessa de la Vina ...
    01/22/2015 - 11:12 am | View Link
  • Patriots advance to Super Bowl with ‘Deflate Gate’ Scandal - WSPA
    ... men in Hollywood have been less than happy in their praise. Movie-goers ... the hottest viral videos on the web. ... U.K. Vanessa de la Vina ...
    01/20/2015 - 9:49 am | View Link
  • Bieber Spoof - WSPA
    ... men in Hollywood have been less than happy in their praise. Movie-goers ... the hottest viral videos on the web. ... U.K. Vanessa de la Vina ...
    01/20/2015 - 8:38 am | View Link
  • More
  • The Parkways of Greater Boston, Ranked Worst to Best
    A lovely reminder of the joys of driving in Boston.
    01/13/2015 - 4:08 pm | View Link
  • 2015 Golden Globe Awards Winners
    The 2015 awards season kicks into high gear this week with the 2015 Golden Globe Awards ceremony, hosted by everyone’s favorite celebrity BFFs, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. We’ll be updating this post as winners are announced, along with some of our commentary. Hit the jump to join in on the fun! 8:00: Tina and Amy […] The post 2015 Golden Globe Awards Winners appeared first on /Film .
    01/11/2015 - 8:03 pm | View Link
  • Happy 46th Birthday, Kyle Richards! Watch A Vintage Clip Of The RHOBH Star Acting In A Horror Film HERE!
    Before Kyle Richards was a cast member of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, she was a 1980's scream queen! In 1989, Kyle starred in the horror flick, Curfew — a movie about about two brothers seeking revenge against members of the legal system who sentenced them to death row. [ Related: EXCLUSIVE! Kyle Spills Secrets To A [...]
    01/11/2015 - 10:45 am | View Link
  • ‘Lego Batman Movie’ Will Answer the Question “Can Batman Be Happy?”
    Batman may be the most miserable major superhero out there, especially in his current, Christopher Nolan-influenced incarnation. This is, of course, despite the fact that he has all the fame, fortune, good looks, and intelligence that an ordinary person could possibly want. So if all those things can’t make him happy, can anything? It’s a […] The post ‘Lego Batman Movie’ Will Answer the Question ...
    01/9/2015 - 5:48 pm | View Link
  • SR Geek Picks: 2015 Movie Trailer Mashup, 2014 Character Deaths & More
    Welcome to Screen Rant’s “Geek Picks,” where we collect the finest movie-related geekery from around the Web. Today you’ll find The Lion King in real life; a memoriam for all the characters we lost in 2015; things Studio Ghibli taught us; and a supercut of films we have to look forward to in 2015. All that and more on this edition of SR’s Geek Picks!
    01/6/2015 - 10:16 am | View Link
  • More
  • The Most Popular Happy New Year Ecard, Viewed By 2.7 Million People At
    It's one of the hottest viral videos on the web. Plus ... College are using a game from the movie "Harry Potter" to learn. Charleston band Heyrocco just got back from a tour in the U.K. Vanessa de la Vina caught up with the band in Greenville to talk ...
    01/20/2015 - 12:00 pm | View Link
  • Kafui Danku’s ‘Happy Deathday’ premieres, receives warm reception
    Whiles watching the premiere of her latest productions at the Silverbird cinema, Accra mall in the company of other movie enthusiast, it became apparent per the reaction of viewers that the production caught on well with the people. ‘Happy Deathday ...
    11/15/2014 - 11:16 am | View Link
  • Hump Day Report: Happy Halloween
    Rants and raves about burning topics that have caught ... a movie, show or DVD that has fired up my imagination, an intriguing personality, or what’s happening in the region. — Lori Hoffman, Associate Editor, Atlantic City Weekly. Happy Halloween ...
    10/29/2014 - 5:32 am | View Link
  • Clap Along with Pharrell’s Happy Song [WATCH VIDEO]
    Back then, it has already caught a lot of attention ... Hit play to hear “Happy” and you’ll feel better in no time! Clap along with with Pharrell’s “Happy” song too!
    03/26/2014 - 11:59 pm | View Link
  • Why we are happy to be caught in a web of movie remakes
    Last week on this site, Ben Child bracketed Sony's reboot with the forthcoming remake of Total Recall. However, also coming shortly are remakes, reboots, reinvisionings, reimaginings, reinventions, retoolings, rethinks or reinterpretations of Carrie ...
    07/9/2012 - 9:51 pm | View Link
  • More
  • Naked Happy Girls: New York Undressed Sexy Private Home ...
    Naked Happy Girls: New York Undressed Sexy Private Home Innocent Natural Sunny Erotic Real & Playful Hardcover – August 31, 2003
    01/25/2015 - 11:50 am | View Website
  • Charlie Chaplin – Official Website
    Charlie’s Mother: Hannah Chaplin. Hannah was a singer and character comedienne in the British music halls with the stage name of Lily Harley, and she did enjoy some ...
    01/25/2015 - 6:35 am | View Website
  • Funny Crazy Happy Video
    I love to post Thai Ads because they are really funny and creative. This is a very creative, entertaining and funny commercial about economical wisdom.
    01/25/2015 - 1:27 am | View Website
  • News | My Chemical Romance
    Official site for the East Coast rock band contains news, show dates, pictures, lyrics, audio clips, and a forum.
    01/24/2015 - 6:53 pm | View Website
  • NPR: Pop Culture Happy Hour Podcast
    Pop Culture Happy Hour is a lively chat about books, movies, music, television, comics and pretty much anything else that strikes a nerve, all in a weekly roundtable ...
    01/24/2015 - 6:00 am | View Website
  • More

Comment On This Story

Welcome to Wopular!

Welcome to Wopular

Wopular is an online newspaper rack, giving you a summary view of the top headlines from the top news sites.

Senh Duong (Founder)
Wopular, MWB, RottenTomatoes

Subscribe to Wopular's RSS Fan Wopular on Facebook Follow Wopular on Twitter Follow Wopular on Google Plus

MoviesWithButter : Our Sister Site

More Movies News