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‘Scene’ It

Hollywood needs new ideas, approach to keep moviegoers entertained

August 1, 2009
By ANTHONY GAYNOR, Staff Writer

The smash success of comic book and novel adaptations, the remakes of classic movies and television series have filmmakers scrambling to find the next blockbuster from cartoons, books and toys I grew up with. Although, it is nice to see some childhood favorites hit the big screen, where are the original stories?

The recent blockbuster smash "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" and its predecessor "Transformers" were based on the classic 1980s Hasbro toy line. I loved the first movie and seeing the gigantic robots duke it out. The sequel provided much of the same, but I realized while watching the movie the adaptations will never live up to my memory of the beloved toys and cartoons.

In early August, another classic toy from the '80s will grace the big screen in "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra." The excitement to watch my childhood heroes Snake Eyes and Duke battle Cobra Commander and Storm Shadow are rising but I cannot help but feel disappointed already.

I am not against all the adaptations. Peter Jackson's "Lord of the Rings" trilogy was epic, and one of my favorite movies of all time, "Fight Club," was based on a novel under the same title. The recent adaptation of the graphic novel "Watchmen" was a great film experience and director Christopher Nolan's "Batman Begins" and "The Dark Night" brought Batman to life in a new light. What I am starting to notice is there is no originality left in Hollywood.

I have one message for filmmakers: Enough is enough. We have sat through adaptations of novels, comic books, toy franchises. Is it too much to ask for an original idea or premise for a movie? While searching the Internet and making use of the Internet Movie Database (www.imdb.com), I have located a few movies that are lined up to be remade or what seems to be Hollywood's favorite term "reimagined."

We have already seen cult classic horror films "Halloween" and "Friday the 13th" be reimagined and not live up to their predecessors. I found myself asking why when I found that "The Evil Dead" is hitting theaters next year. The famed horror director Sam Raimi, who constructed cult hits "Evil Dead," "Evil Dead 2" and "Army of Darkness," is gearing up to remake his classic "Evil Dead." On the IMBD site it states "The Evil Dead" is in production and lead actor in the originals, Bruce Campbell, will be attached to the movie. Campbell played the classic shotgun- and chainsaw-wielding character Ash and I do not think there is an actor that can capture the character and make it as memorable.

Horror movies are not the only flicks being "reimagined" by Hollywood. Remember the 1984 classic movie "The Karate Kid" in which Mr. Miyagi teaches a young Daniel Larusso martial arts and helps in life lessons? Well if you don't you will get a chance to see a reimagination of the movie in 2010 similarly titled "The Kung Fu Kid." Rumors online point to Jackie Chan playing the teacher and Will Smith's son, Jaden Smith, playing the roll of the teenager.

Another 1984 movie that will be made modern is "Red Dawn." The original movie featured Patrick Swayze playing the lead role of Jed and leading a group of teenagers against an invasion of Soviet Union soldiers. The group of teens dub themselves "Wolverines" and utilize guerrilla warfare to fight them off. In the reimagining, Chris Hemsworth will take the role of Jed which will be his second reimagining of a character. Hemsworth played Captain Kirk in the 2009 release of "Star Trek."

Kevin Bacon starred as Ren McCormack in the 1984 flick "Footloose," the classic tale of teen rebellion in which Ren fought to bring rock and roll and dancing to a small town. Actor Chace Crawford will take the role of Ren in the 2010 reimagining.

One of my favorite cult classic movies "The Warriors" is also listed in production for an update. The original movie debuted in 1979 and was the inspiration behind a video game released just a couple of years ago. In the original, a gang dubbed The Warriors is framed for killing a gang leader and chased through New York City by numerous other gangs to get to their home turf of Coney Island. The movie is based on the 1965 novel by Sol Yurick which bears the same title.

If you have not seen these movies or you just don't remember them, do yourself a favor and rent them. Try to check out the original before watching the remake. Enough is enough Hollywood, give us an original film and stop flooding us with things we have seen and already love.

 
 

 

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